Whether you are going to set up a new business, or just want to donate something for a noble cause, you can do this efficiently even if you do not have enough cash. All you need is to think of some unique ideas to raise funds from your friends, relatives, and also from the public. Let's have a look at the various ways in which money can be raised for different purposes.
Fundraising for Charities
Before you begin your fundraising drive, try to collect all possible information regarding the cause, as well as the way the money is going to be spent. This would increase your credibility in the eyes of the public. Here are some simple, yet effective ways to raise money for a charitable cause.
Yard Sale: A yard sale is an excellent idea for raising funds for a charitable cause at the expense of some unwanted stuff around your house. You can take the help of your friends or family members to organize a yard sale. It is preferable to organize it on weekends, as this would give you more time to explain your cause to the people coming to your yard sale.
Online Survey: You can also make a little extra money by participating in online surveys. Many online survey agencies allow participants to cash in their survey points, which can be used for donations.
Bake Sale: A bake sale or sale of any other food item is another great idea for raising funds. With the help of your friends and relatives, you can organize a food sale, and collect a considerable amount of money for a charitable cause.
Charity Auction: A charity auction can help you raise a substantial amount of money. However, be sure to get a great collection of products to make it successful. You can request your friends or relatives to donate their second-hand items, or approach local corporate firms to donate products for the auction in return for free advertisements at the event.
Organize a Play or Dance Competition: Another fundraising idea is to organize an event, like a play or a dance competition. Such events easily attract all types of individuals, whether they are interested in donating or not. It would also provide you a great platform to generate public opinion, or support for your cause.
Art Exhibition: A successful art exhibition can bring in a lot of money for a charitable cause. You can organize a children's art show or a participatory art event, where local artists can be given a platform to exhibit their talent in return for a small entry fee.
Raffles: A raffle is basically a lottery that people buy to win a prize. Each raffle ticket contains a specific number. A copy of each number is placed in a container, from where tickets are drawn one by one and then checked against the prizes with numbers attached to them. The holders of those tickets then win the prizes. It is an immensely popular game that can be organized for raising funds.
Charity Car Wash: This is perhaps one of the simplest ways to raise funds and create awareness for a charitable cause. Organize your charity car wash at a high traffic location and fix a particular amount for washing a car. To attract a large crowd, you can sell tickets beforehand and create posters stating the price and the reason behind organizing the car wash. If people know that you are doing this for a charitable cause, they will be more interested in getting their cars washed.
Gift-wrapping Service: You can make a decent amount of money for your charity by offering a gift-wrapping service during an occasion like Christmas. Just be sure that the fee you charge for wrapping gifts helps you make a sizable profit, besides covering the cost of the materials required for offering this service.
Online Charity Malls: Online charity malls allow people to make donations for their favorite charities while shopping online from some famous merchants, like Amazon, Staples, and Target. The malls receive a percentage of the revenues from the stores where people make their purchases. They also donate a portion to the charities. Some well-known websites that offer this service are eScrip and OneCause. So, you can sign up with some reputed online malls and get donations from people who like to shop online.
Fundraising for School
Raising funds for your school can be great fun. Here are some useful ideas for the same.
Talent Show/Sports Day: Talent shows, or concerts, are some of the popular events that can be organized in schools for fundraising. Organizing sports events like volleyball, cricket, baseball, football, etc., and selling food items by arranging stalls can also help you gather a lot of money for your school.
School Fair: Organizing a school fair is another great idea, where you can earn a lot by selling tickets/coupons. However, you will need the help of a large number of individuals to make it a grand success. Money can be generated through sponsors, and also by selling different items at the stalls.
Book Sales: You can also ask the students or your neighbors to donate their unwanted books, and sell them to collect some money for your school.
Barbecue: This is a simple, but effective way to raise funds for your school. You can set up a barbecue and ask for donations from people who want to attend it. The amount left after covering all overhead costs can be donated to your school.
Fundraising Calendar: By producing customized calendars, you can not only raise funds but also promote your school by displaying the educational facilities it offers. You can sell such fundraising calendars to your friends, relatives, colleagues, and even to local stores, and collect a considerable amount of money.
Recycle Drive: By hosting a recycle drive, you can make money while participating in an event that can help save the environment. You can ask your friends, neighbors, and students of your school to get their trash, such as plastic bottles, broken phones, old computer parts, CDs, and DVDs, and old shoes, and earn money by selling them to companies that collect such items for recycling.
Quiz Contest: A quiz contest is enjoyed by the young and old alike. So, you can organize a quiz contest and charge a small registration fee from the participants. The collected sum can be used for your school. You can contact local firms or businesses to donate things that can be given as prizes to the winners.
Knitting/Sewing Class: If you have some special skills like knitting, sewing, or making crafts, then you don't have to look elsewhere to collect funds. You can offer a few classes on knitting or sewing, and earn some money for your school.
Art/Craft Fair: If you are great at making craft items, then why not sell them to make some money for your school? A craft fair is a great place to sell such items at good prices and raise funds.
Fundraising for Businesses
To set up a new business, you will definitely need a certain amount of capital to start with. Your savings and assets are the two most important sources for business capital. Along with these, you can also consider raising funds for your business. Here are some efficient ways to raise funds for a startup business.
Friends and Relatives: Before you try any outside source, you can always ask your friends or relatives to help you out. Be professional in your approach, prepare a formal agreement for the loan, and offer a decent return or share in the total profit, whichever is convenient for you.
Private Investors: You can also look for a professional or private investor to invest in your business endeavor.
Search for a Business Partner: If your fund requirement is considerable, you can search for a business partner. But here, the business would be in partnership, and you will have to consider a lot of factors, especially those regarding profit-sharing. Right at the start itself, everything should be clear and in writing.
Crowdfunding: The popularity of crowdfunding as a means of raising money for a business is increasing in the recent times. To get crowdfunding, you have to create an online fundraising page and propose your business idea in a crowdfunding site. Interested people will then invest in your project. Crowdfunding can also involve selling a small amount of equity to several investors. Kickstarter, Indiegogo, RocketHub, and Razoo are some of the popular sites for crowdfunding.
Angel Investing: Angel investors are those that offer funds for startup businesses. Angel investors are typically established and experienced entrepreneurs that can provide not only funds but their valuable advice and connections for a startup business. Golden Seeds, Tech Coast Angels, and Investors' Circle are some famous angel investing networks that can connect you to potential investors. AngelList is a social network for raising equity or debt investment, where you can create a profile and connect with investors that can be interested in your project.
Bank Loan: A bank loan is perhaps one of the most common sources of business capital. The SBA (Small Business Administration) of the United States is a government agency that guarantees a loan for a small business. So, you can get your loan guaranteed by SBA or offer some kind of a security to the bank to get your loan approved.
Revenue-based Financing: Revenue-based loans are more convenient than bank loans for a small and growing business, as they are not attached to a fixed interest payment. The interest payment on revenue-based financing is usually a percentage (generally 2 to 5%) of the gross revenue of the company for that particular month.
Second Mortgage: A second mortgage is basically a type of subordinate mortgage. It is subordinate in the sense that in the event of a default, the second mortgage would receive payment after the original or first mortgage. Generally, how much loan you can borrow for a second mortgage is calculated by deducting the value of the outstanding mortgage from the value of that particular property.
Venture Capital: Venture capital refers to the capital made available for new enterprises with high risk and high growth potential. Venture capitalists who invest in such businesses receive equities in return for the funds they invest.
Credit Cards: Credit cards are usually not considered a very good source of capital for a startup business. However, if you fall short of a small amount of money, then credit cards can be used to fill that gap. They can be considered a temporary source of money till you get other types of financing for your business.
You can also make good use of social media for raising funds. For example, you can create a Facebook page or an attentive Twitter feed, as these have the potential to reach out to a large number of people. Selling products online can also be a very successful fundraising idea. So sit back for a moment, think which one of the above ideas would serve your purpose, and then take your pick. Here's wishing you a grand success!