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Posted By: Abigail on February 21, 2019


Just because you are a small church doesn't mean you can't do big things. While you may not have the resources large churches have, you can still use fundraisers to help raise money to support your various programs and projects.

Rather than use traditional fundraising techniques, unique out-of-box fundraisers will help strengthen your church community and keep members engaged!

Here are six unique fundraisers for small (or big!) churches.

A Work-a-Thon

Sure you've heard of walk-a-thons - they're a nonprofit and school staple - but what about a work-a-thon? A work-a-thon is when workers and students collect pledges in exchange for hosting a large work-day. Here, participants will gather supplies and do work around the community. For example, they can do yard work or housework for elderly members or church repairs. It's a great fundraising tactic for small churches because donors know they are supporting the church and providing helpful services to community members.

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Babysitting Nights

Parents - especially young ones - often avoid date nights or important events because they are unable to find a reliable babysitter. So, why not host a babysitting night? For this fundraiser, ask nursery workers or members (or teenagers) with childcare experience to volunteer several hours of their time. Have parents pay for their alone time sans worrying about finding a quality babysitter!

Volunteers raise money for the church, parents get a date night, and the kids are able to play with their friends! Don't just limit it to regular babysitting - you can incorporate a movie or arts and crafts for the kids.

A Sporting Event Party

Who doesn't love watching sports? Since people often pay to watch or attend a major sporting event, why not raise money for your church in the process? Make a night out of it by hosting a party and charging money for tickets. To keep costs low, limit ticket prices to a few dollars and ask members to bring their own snacks or drinks. Members will get to watch their favorite sporting event with some snacks and their favorite friends. You can even turn this event into a weekly or monthly party!


Cook-offs are the ultimate small church fundraiser. Put a unique spin on it by hosting a themed cook-off. For example, while chili cook-offs are classic, why not host a BBQ cook-off, or one that highlights your local agriculture. For example, if your town is famous for blueberries, host a cook-off or baking contest where contestants have to use that ingredient in their recipe. To raise money, you can have contestants pay an "entry fee" and attendees can buy a ticket to attend the event and taste the recipes! To make it even more fun, give prizes to the first, second, and third place winners.

Host a Craft Night

Craft nights are great fundraisers because you have so many options! For example, you can host a painting class, knitting night, or even a pottery night. Reach out to local vendors to see if they would be willing to donate their time (or discount their normal flat rate fee) and charge guests to attend the event. Check out your local craft store or college to gather ideas for a craft night.

Craft nights can be a bit more expensive than cook-offs or sporting events, so they are a great option for smaller groups such as choirs or ladies' groups.

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Throw a Ticketed Dinner Event

While Wednesday night is often reserved for church dinners, why not offer a special kind of dinner a different day of the week? Ticketed dinner events - such as potlucks, fish fries, or spaghetti dinners - are a great way to raise money for your small church. A ticketed dinner event allows families to have a night off of cooking and helps keeps members engaged in the church. Have members purchase tickets in advance to keep costs low.

These are just a sample of unique fundraising events for small churches - the possibilities are endless! Do you have a favorite out-of-the-box fundraising idea? Let us know in the comments below.


PS - With Continue to Give, you can keep track of all your fundraisers and fundraising ideas using our online giving and Church management tool. Learn more about Continue to Give here.

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