As we begin to say farewell to 2010, many of us are thinking back on what we’ve done for our sponsored kids over the past year. We’ve written letters, sent cards, mailed in family gifts, and participated in the Compassion blog.
Some of us became volunteers. Others traveled far and wide, visiting our children in person.
But many of us are still looking for our place in this ministry. Many of us feel a pull on our hearts and we’ve prayed for an opportunity to do more for children in need. We have talents and gifts. We are ready to bring them to the table.
I have a suggestion.
I’ve become inspired by the stories of ordinary, everyday people who, with nothing more than an idea and some elbow grease, organized events and brought in funds for children in poverty:
- The homeschooling mother of four who planned a 5K run for Compassion’s Child Survival Program in Ethiopia;
- The summer Bible study group who organized a yard sale to benefit the Global Food Crisis Fund;
- The little boy who started a penny drive at his school when he heard that the people of Haiti needed tents after the earthquake;
- The blogger who donated $2 for every comment left on her blog in one week;
- The businessman who started the Junky Car Club, encouraging people to trade in their luxury automobiles for budget cars and donate the difference to children in need.
If you are reaching for that next level of involvement in Compassion’s program, I challenge you to find your opportunity in the area of fundraising.
We have this spot where we can share our fundraising ideas and experiences. Bake sales, aluminum can drives, Compassion parties, golf tournaments, lemonade stands — this is the place to bring it.
If you’ve organized an event already, please share what you did. What worked? What didn’t work? What would you do differently?
- If you have fundraising ideas, big or small, please share them. If you have an idea that you would like to implement, comment here and communicate with others who may be able to help or encourage.
- If you have an event coming up, post the date, time and location.
By simply posting, you are doing something for the children. You are offering information that may inspire others to great heights. And children in need will reap the benefits.
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Back in high school, we often do raffles. It is one great way to raise funds. And it is quite exciting since we offer great prizes for it too.
My dad and I organized an individual bike-a-thon event. All you have to do is ride 15 or 25km and enlist people to sponsor you $1/km! All the money raised will go to sponsor children. It all has to be done by September 30, 2012 (I am hoping to make it annual). Because you ride by yourself, not as a big group, you can participate too!!!!!!! I will be riding 25km, and I am looking for sponsors. Or you can ride. If you would like more info, you can comment back. Or you can leave your e-mail in a comment and I will e-mail you. Or contact me on Etsy- my shop is madefromscratch4u.etsy.com BTW, I am also selling handmade bracelets to support a CSP. Thanks!
My name is Randy paul and I am first and foremost a full-time missionary with my wife, Tawny. We serve the low-income and impoverished in Albuquerque, NM and also work cross-culturally with the native Americans on the local reservations.
We are CONSTANTLY trying to help other missionaries and Christian servants raise funds to fulfill their calls. Thanks for the great site! The comments here are AWESOME, as well!
I wanted to encourage you to not grow weary in well-doing!
I am commenting here for another reason too:
We are excited to present you with our organization, Sell To Serve. This is an off-shoot from our primary missions activities and functions as a ministry support group. We base our operation on the concepts defined in Acts 4:32-35.
Our main tool for ministry support is our online auction platform. The primary focus of the auction is -FUNDRAISING- and specifically assisting people raise funds for ministry needs.
WE ARE A NEW SITE. We need and welcome both sellers and buyers to register and help build the Sell To Serve community. Be part of this grass-roots movement! By spreading the word about our site to YOUR friends and family it help US to reach our ministry goals, as we funnel 60% of our revenue back into the Christian Church and missions arena.
Our fees are about 1/2 of what ebay charges and the first 4000 registrants receive additional discounts!
Come visit us at http://www.selltoserve.org !
We’ll be hosting a fundraiser for the entire month of February for our sponsor children, Sara and Ravi. I would love for you all to join us, visit, guest post, share your Compassion stories.
I’m just crocheting hats for sale. It is what I have and hopefully it will be something that people are willing to donate for.
Any help in spreading the word is much appreciated.
I just looked at your blog post on this. Very cool. I will help spread the word. cool Etsy shop too. I circled you 🙂
I sell cards on Etsy. My name is hyperlinked to it.
We are holding a national golf-a-thon on June 18th next year and this is an excellent way to raise funds. We are organizing everything including making a national website for all non-profits to use. We invite your group to organize some players to attend the fund-raiser and be part of this record settting day of fund raising. If holding a golf tournament is worthy of consideration check out our http://www.golfprizepackages.com for your complete menu of golf tournament needs.
I work with a small group of young ladies at my Church. They would often get together to make bracelets for me to take on some of the mission trips I went on. One day we started to talk about the possibility of making jewelry and selling it to raise money for them to start sponsoring their own child. J4Hope was started after several months we had enough to sponsor someone for a year and by the end of the year we had raised enough to sponsor about 4 years. We have expanded our cause to raise money for the Bite Back campaign. We get the official Bite Back bracelets but we also have 2 other alternative that give different price points. Then the money from these go to the bite back campaign. Plus along the way we use the Compassion table covering and have materials and child packets at each event. Our youngest member gave a talk in school this year on child slave labor and included Compassion in the talk as a way to help keep a child and their family from having to resort to this. It has been an interesting journey so far.
I recently held a yard sale. I advertised it as a charity event and stated (and did) donate 100% of all the money raised to Compassion. I also setup a table that had a few child packets and lots of information and brochures on it. The sale was actually a pretty good sale and we were able to raise an amount that made my family happy.
My school would talk to different restaurants that are open to doing fundraising events. I know that Culver’s and Chili’s will give a group a time slot during a day of the week, (ex. Thursday, 7/15 from 6PM-8PM). The would have have volunteers come help from that organization to help with serving and bringing out orders during that time so that all a percentage of all incoming purchases during that time would be donated towards that organization. This is a great way to let friends and family know to come eat at that restaurant… plus people around the community who are eating there anyway will be donating towards the cause. I think Barnes and Noble has also done something like this in that past.
I’m a first grade teacher. During our community workers unit at school, I encouraged my students to find ways help the community (local and global). One of our fundraisers was for the Bite Back campaign for malaria. We had both a pink and a blue Compassion piggy bank to collect coins for Bite Back. We had a little competition, (boys vs girls, class vs class, etc). The students were very excited and spoke about it to their families, friends, and other teachers.
What about a coffee house? You can talk to teen and young adult or adults in your church who would like to perform and then see if there is anyone who would like to donate desserts, coffee etc… You can ask for a donation at the door or take up a love offering.
The youth group at our church has always done very well with doing bucket drops outside of Walmart. We did several this year as fundraisers for camp and we usually made around $800 a day! Pretty good for just standing outside all day.
I would like to work with sponsers, supporting children from the same village or town as my sponsered child. I would like to do a community based project to raise money for the local church, school, water well – whatever we agree upon with instruction from Compassion International. Anyone interested?
Pamela, that’s a great idea. Where is your sponsored child from?
You know how ladies have home parties for jewelry or bags, or whatever? The consultant always asks you if you’d like to be a hostess…Well next time consider asking if the consultant will donate her/his profits to Compassion. I happen to be a consultant think that it is a great idea!
I was just thinking about all the tax returns that are going to be received this year, and it hit me; if there ever was a easier way to donate money (and money that most likely is not going to be missed for that matter) it would be a tax return check. There are many useless things you could otherwise blow the extra money on, but this year why not use it in return to feed and care for the needy children in Jesus’s name.
O great idea for my neighborhood!
Little Caesar’s Pizza has a great fund raiser kit. You take orders and money from people ahead then they get their order in a week or so. These are uncooked pizzas, breadsticks etc, customer puts together and bakes. can be stored in freezer. Very handy. was always an easy seller. I always wished I had ordered MORE myself!
I invite you to support Compassion in when you travel through the “Fly for $5” donation program from TravelScoutClub.com
Here’s how it works:
1. Compassion Registers for free at http://www.TravelScoutClub.com.
2. Any air travel customer mentions Compassion when traveling.
3. TravelScoutClub.com donates $5 to Compassion.
4. The work of the ministry is supported!
Compassion offers a child sponsorship fund raising site called, The Great Sponsorship Challenge. Check it out at http://sponsorshipchallenge.org/. You can build your own child sponsorship page and set a sponsorship goal, challenge another team or join a competition among other teams.
I started a photography business and donate 10% of my profits to Compassion. Hopefully over time the business will grow and my donations will grow, too!
I also currently am running a fund raising website for Compassion called “FASTING- 4 – FOOD.” Here is the link for that site:
The host website is called ‘First Giving’ and you can set-up any kind of fund raiser you like! I sent the link to everyone in my email addresses and post the link every day of FaceBook.
So far that site has raised about $260.00
Last summer I put together a Compassion Golf tournament and was able to raise about $2,000.00. I thought it would be difficult, but I searched the web for some ideas and located Golf Digest (online).
Essentially for a small fee (that was recovered thru the tournament fees, the Golf Digest website walks you thru the entire event. They even gave every person who signed up for the event a FREE one year subscription to Golf Digest magazine!
Here is the old website I set up: http://www.golfdigestplanner.com/16102-CompassionGolfTournament/
Anyway, it was a total success even though I only had about 1/2 the people I wanted…like I said, we still made about $2000.00 for Compassion, plus we got to play some golf!
Most of the people think that they can’t help because they don’t have money. I would like to encourage each one saying that, if each one, millions , gives a little bit, doesn’t hurt but heals a tremendous wound in the world, those innocent children that deserve a chance , deserve we give our hand and God will be well pleased. I also encourage you to open and see as much as you can , when you get time, and pray for each child and God will be well pleased with your compassion. Finally, share your love sharing this website to your friends, co-workers, church and be sure: you are doing what is right, and God will be well pleased!
I’ve had a weird idea for the past few months and am not sure how it’s going to work exactly. Furthermore, I’m not exactly sure how much money I’ll be able to raise, but I am really sensing God leading me in this direction. I’m a writer who has written a few unpublished books. While I’d still like to seek major publication for my novels, the Lord has laid on my heart to write a short story collection and seek publication through a smaller company. I know I’m probably not going to see many royalties from this, but I plan on donating every cent of my author royalties from this short story project to Compassion. It’s interesting that I came to the website tonight just looking for information on this sort of thing, and immediately I found a link to this blog.
For the past few weeks, the Lord has really been showing me how all He asks of us is that we use what He has given us for His glory. I am not an eloquent speaker, nor am I able to organize events well. There’s not much I can do that seems practical, but I can write. I can also sing/play guitar, and I am hoping to go through a small recording studio and put out a cd of songs I’ve written. I also want to donate those proceeds to Compassion. It’s all about just finding out how God has gifted us and using those gifts to bless others and serve Him. We’re so unworthy of the grace He gives us–He doesn’t just redeem us. He enables and desires for us to participate in the work He is doing.
I would love to get together a clothing/goods drive with proceeds going toward a Christian org that is helping either Haiti or the Brazilian mudslide survivors. Can you guys help? 🙂
For Christmas this year, I set a budget of $15.00 per person that I was buying for (I set aside money throughout the year), and did my best to spend less. The money that I saved I gave to Living Water International to help repair a broken well. I guess this isn’t really “fundraising”, but it gave me a really good incentive to search for better deals. 🙂
A lot of people, including me, who sell Scentsy products do fundraisers and donate all the profit to the organization doing the fundraiser. The profit margin is about 20%.
An idea that I love, but haven’t personally done myself, is ask for donations to Compassion, instead of birthday or Christmas gifts. When you think of all the junk we accumulate every year, and how often we just feel obligated to give and receive, it makes so much more sense to share Compassion with the people we love. People want to give, and they want their gifts to make a difference — what better way to do that than to give a family gift to a family that is TRULY in need, and not just in want?
I’ve heard about even young children who requested donations instead of birthday gifts, and what a precious thing to see this in our children!
For all the gardeners out there, you could plant a garden and then sell the fruit and vegetables at a yard stand with proceeds to be donated to Compassion.
I made cards for family birthdays and have been considering selling them to friends. This could be used to raise money for Compassion especially if you got a group together to make a bunch and then offer them for sale.
My school has planned a “loose change” collection drive to raise funds to replace the flags we fly in front of the school–they’re faded and getting tattered. We may be able to get an American flag donated, but we’ll still need to buy a Christian flag. Whichever class raises the most money will be treated to a pizza party or something similar (we haven’t quite decided on the prize yet).
How about doing the same thing, but donating the funds to Compassion? The school can decide which fund to donate to.
Churches could have a special Compassion Offering- everything in the offering plate could go to Compassion!
A girl from my church that went to Guatemala this summer with me on a mission trip that partnered with Compassion, has been using her Pampered Chef parties as a way to raise money for the children of Guatemala.
Last December I hosted a “Birthday Party for Jesus”. There was a Christmas tree decorated with “gifts for Jesus” – ornaments that represented items they could buy from Compassion (mosquito nets, children to sponsor, CSP projects). I had incentives or gifts for people who bought things (mosquito net bracelets, copies of Too Small to Ignore and Hope Lives, etc). If Compassion continues to offer the catalog as they did this year, you would have so many more gifts for your guests to choose from. And don’t forget to have a birthday cake – the kids will love it!
I really like this idea, thanks for sharing! I was wondering what the catalog is that you had mentioned?
Hi Rachel — This year compassion published a catalog called “Gifts of Compassion.” I’m not sure if you can call and request one — check with Compassion’s customer care about that — but here’s a link to further info…
Thanks for the great comments, everyone! Please keep them coming. We also received the following remark in Facebook that I’d like to share here. – Darren
My daughters and I plan to have a Walk-A-Thon in the Spring. We will walk a mile (or maybe three) down the main street of a nearby town with a sign and brochures for Compassion. We’ll ask friends and family to sponsor our walk and we’ll hand out brochures to people we see along the way.
We also hope to have a yard sale and donate the proceeds to Compassion. We live in a very rural area, so we are looking for a good location to have our sale. (I got the idea from a fellow blogger who had a yard sale and was able to send a gift to their child. The child bought a BED and no longer has to sleep on a thin mat!) I also plan to have Compassion brochures and child packets at the sale.
I know some people make handmade goodies and sell them and give some of the money to Compassion. One woman I know has started Purse for a Purpose and she donates the profits from selling really AMAZING purses and sponsors an LDP student. Some sell on Etsy and give proceeds to Compassion.
I had an idea to have a Around the World activity for kids at a large church. You could set up areas with displays for several countries, showing maps, pictures of life in the country, some foods from the area and comparing monthly incomes in the area and in the US. This could be used to learn about different cultures, but also to gain perspective of how good we have it here in the US. There could also be an area set up with Compassion info and Compassion videos and donation jar.
I love the idea of making a donation per blog comments. Good ideas, everyone.
I plan on purchasing a quilt or other items from http://www.haitipeacequilts.org and raffling them off to raise funds for Haiti.
Host a party themed around Compassion International. Provide your guests with Compassion materials such as bookmarks, stickers, magazines, brochures and most importantly sponsorship packets. If a guest is unsure remind them of the many ways God has blessed them. Tell them when the time is right Compassion is the best organization to give to because they provide a one on one relationship with the child they sponsor.
For 1/2 of the average paycheck for a week, a person can sponsor a child for a year. The website provides an easy way to pay for your commitment and communicate with your sponsored child. Compassion International is awesome!!
I think hosting a partying themed around Compassion International works out great! Instead of gifts you can ask your guest to make a donation or sponsor a child. Also with all the material that Compassion provides you can raise awareness and give your guests something that they can hold onto to remind them of Compassion.
An idea that I’ve seen used most often with high school student groups is a donation based carwash
Participate in the local holiday parades by using a float to place banners and have kids walking along the crowd passing out information and other with collection bowls.
Chik-Fil-A offers fund raising nights at their locations. Talk with a manager about the opportunity. Basically patrons hand in a flier when the order and 10% of their order goes to the organization. It is very easy to hand out fliers in the community and local churches and also give them out that night. A lot of the managers will also allow a table off to the side for child packets or other literature. You can earmark the Compassion Fund of your choice for this fund raiser.
I have thought of sponsoring a fundraising event at DeviantArt. At the moment I have sent an inquiry to the help desk to find out if this is permitted. And if so how and where I can set up the fundraiser.
Any funds raised will got the the AIDS Initiative. I sponsor 5 children in different African countries all that have an AIDS epidemic to some extent. I am very concerned for all the children that live in Africa and either have AIDS, HIV or lost a parent(s) to the disease.
If this falls through I do have a backup plan. That plan will be having people from facebook and twitter visit my DeviantArt gallery and mention it on my facebook group or twitter. I will donate a dollar (for now until I get a job) for each mention of the visit and which photo or drawing they liked best.
Donations will be made once ever two weeks for at least two months.
One of my friends from OurCompassion makes lovely, high quality homemade soap and sells it to benefit the Medical Intervention Fund. I tease her about her spon-suds-ship. 😉
I lead a children’s camp at church every summer and presented Compassion to the kids this past summer. The children took home little collection boxes (printable from the Compassion site) and collected spare change. We raised about $180 for the Unsponsored Children’s Fund.
I also recently shared Bite Back with my daughter’s school Brownie Troop and they brought money to help purchase mosquito nets.
Someone else’s idea on here of the shrimp boil and collecting for Compassion would be a great idea for my family to borrow as we host a HUGE neighborhood cookout (to which all the neighbors bring a dish) each Labor Day weekend.
GREAT POST! I look forward to seeing all the creative ideas!
Just have a bakesale. It’s a really good idea, especially because many people do not have time to do baking and such. People really appreciate home made goods, and why not donate all of the proceeds to Compassion.
At my college, we often hold tournaments for non-profit organizations. For example, to raise money for breast cancer we held a dodge ball tournament. We have also held kickball tournaments and bowling. Maybe a church could do something like this as well and give the entrance fee to Compassion!
My husband and I own Glacier Homemade Ice Cream and Gelato in Colorado Springs. We’re doing a CSP Sunday to raise money for the Child Survival Program this weekend – December 19th.
We’re open 11 am to 9 pm at 5166 N. Nevada, Colorado Springs (the new shopping center with Costco, Lowes and Kohls).
Stop by and eat some gelato if you live around here! We’ll donate 40% of every cup or cone of ice cream and all coffee drinks!
And it was delicious…
This past sumer I held a Compassion Golf tournament and raised over $2000.00. It was a lot easier then you might imagine. Next year I’m hoping to get Wess to play.
Hey Dave — Do you have any details on how you went about organizing this? Did the golf course donate their course, equipment, etc? Did someone donate prizes? Was it the entrance fee that was donated to Compassion? Just curious for a little more info. Love the idea!
One year in middle school, everyone in my class was given $10. The goal was to multiply the amount as much as possible, like the parable of the talents in Matthew 25, and the winner would have their money donated to the charity of their choice. Me and a good friend of mine combined our money and bought a few two-liters and a large bag of popcorn kernals and borrowed a popcorn machine from our church. We then sold the popcorn and drinks at a movie night for my brother’s boy scout troup. When we ran out (three 2-liters and a bag of kernals don’t go very far with 100 hungry boy scouts and their families!) people started making donations. Overall we raised nearly $700 that night and donated our money to Compassion!
What an awesome idea!!! Especially considering I teach at a Christian elementary/middle school. I don’t teach Bible to the middle schoolers, but I’m curious as to whether it’d be something my 4th/5th grade could handle. And I could talk to the Bible teacher for upper grades and see what he thinks… great way to get the kids serving, thinking, etc.!
My husband and I had a crab and shrimp boil this summer and invited all our friends and neighbors. We asked them to bring a contribution instead of a side dish….whatever they would spend to put a dish together goes into the Compassion Fund for kids. We collected over 500.00 to send into Compassion and will definitely do it again next year. We had fun, got to reconnect with neighbors and friends and help feed kiddos 🙂
My last year of college, I decided to ask if any of my friends had textbooks they weren’t using if they would be willing to donate them to be sold and money given to InterVarsity Christian Fellowship (a Christian college organization I was in). I got eight friends to donate their books and raised $1,200!
So after that I decided to ask other clubs and individuals to participate and after the earthquake in Haiti, many people wanted to help and donated books. Ultimately, the idea raised $13,000.
Now I’m turning it into a non-profit called Compassion by the Book, which supports college students in making a difference in numerous non-profit organizations/causes. My goal is to bring students awareness about the need and opportunity to help and encourage them to make a wise decision about how to use their resources.
I love the responses so far. Love that already we have an idea for every age group — from young kids to students to adults. Thanks you guys…keep them coming!
Kurtis — your idea is brilliant! Can students who participate in this select Compassion International as their organization — or is there a preset list they pick from? (And could Compassion be put on the list?) Are you thinking about expanding outside of Colorado? I’m really interested!!
I couldn’t find your contact information, so if you would like to talk with me more about how the idea can be used to support Compassion International, you (or anyone) are welcome to email me at [email protected].
I didn’t see Compassion listed on https://compassionbythebook.com/causes/. How does Compassion get added to the list?
Hi Tom — the easiest way to get Compassion added is to encourage the college students in your life to use their used textbooks for good by selling them and giving the money to Compassion.
If they have the willpower, they can do it all themselves, or they can work with the support and guidance of Compassion by the Book. If they are really motivated, they can encourage their friends to give books that are going unused as well, with the funds going to Compassion. My experience is that every student knows at least one other person who is letting their books go to waste on a shelf and would be willing to give to a trusted friend. if asked. One of my friends actually gave $600 worth of books, which is astounding for a college student!
Lisa — Thank you :). To God be the glory!
Yes, students can definitely select Compassion International as the recipient organization from their donated textbooks!
Any students that are passionate about the mission of Compassion International could definitely use this idea to turn books into funds (either independently or through the help of my organization).
My vision is to expand to every campus in the U.S. or as far as God will take it!
We hold an interdenominational “Feast of Praise” in our community every other year before Thanksgiving. Musicians share their talents and we worship together as a Christian community. Some years we featured community choirs, other years a combined worship team to lead in congregational singing, other years soloists, duets and ensembles. We include high school musicians (vocal and instrumental) and children’s choirs from the grade school. We’ve been doing this since 1993 as a benefit for Compassion and for our local transient fund, and this year raised over $1,000.00 in addition to signing up new sponsors. We always share one of the great videos from Compassion — this year we showed “One Act” and people were really impacted by it. It’s a highlight of the year for so many of us and I love how it brings all the churches together. It has also been a good way for me to meet new pastors and to be welcomed to speak in their churches as well. I posted some photos on Facebook this year.
One of the favorite fundraisers our youth group did once for the 30 Hour Famine was called “Knock Out Hunger.” Someone donated an old car that they were sending to the junk yard and we had people pay about $1 for five hits to the car with a hammer. They were able to spray paint it and stuff too. We put graffiti on the car with things about world hunger and how we can help feed children in other countries. It was a lot of fun! Just be sure you let your local police department know what you are doing so they don’t think you are vandalizing!
This summer, our church’s kid’s program decided that all of the money collected by the kids for the summer would go to feed kids in Haiti.
We are in a small group with 2 other couples, and we decided that our kids should do a lemonade stand together to raise money for Haiti (they’d all been wanting to do one after hearing about another family at church having one, so we combined our efforts for one big stand!). The kids, ages 4-11, made signs that we put up ahead of time in our neighborhood…and we saw people slowing down all week to look at the sign in our yard, saying to come back on Saturday.
They raised $183 in one morning/afternoon!
I realize that a lemonade stand isn’t original – but the kids were dedicated to making it work and knew where the money was going and told customers about it, which made all the difference, I think. The other thing that helped was having the signs up early, so when people drove by on Saturday morning, they already knew what was going on. And, the 3 moms involved all posted to our Facebook statuses about the lemonade stand, which got a few customers to come our way!