Aside from being part and parcel of student life, fundraising activities can also make you feel good while helping out your community. Science shows that being generous can have a tremendous impact on your self-esteem. In fact, Time reports that generosity can benefit both mental and physical health — whether you are the one directly donating, or encouraging others to do so. This makes universities a great place to rally support for a cause, as students nowadays think of themselves as more empowered and willing to help; all that’s left to do is to tap into this pool.
However, life, education, and other obligations often get in the way for university students to donate. This means that fundraising organisers must take it upon themselves to make the donation process not only easier and more seamless in light of these barriers, but also more interesting for participants.
Run a flea market
You’re sure to find some students who are more than willing to clean out their closets for a profit. Put up a charging fee for those who want to become vendors and host a weekend-long flea market, open to the university community and beyond.
Staying active is a huge priority for many students. For instance, Sport in Mind hosts sporting events for a cause, which is a great way for multitasking students to stay fit and help out. Running a variety of sports can also help attract more students.
Curate an art show
University campuses are hotbeds for creativity. If you’re looking to raise funds for charity, you can opt to organise an art festival featuring works made by students, ranging from paintings to artsy films. Simply charging a small entrance fee for those interested can go a long way.
Host a video game tournament
GuardianCon is but one example of how playing video games can become a charitable activity, making it even easier for young adults and students to get involved. Set up a bunch of consoles, host an all day long FIFA tournament, and see who’s the best player in the student body.
Cook some yummy food
A university student is a hungry student, and it’s hard to resist well-cooked, homemade food. Take advantage of the warmer months and host a campus-wide BBQ and picnic, charging visitors either by plate or with a flat entrance fee.
Encourage some friendly rivalry
It’s time to see which university faculty or department is the most altruistic! Set up a fundraising competition amongst the different faculties within your university and see who does best at the end. Have different awards, such as the faculty with the most participating donors and the department with the best fundraising campaign.
What to do after
Ensure your fundraiser is a success
Communication, truly, is key. Save the Children’s checklist for promoting fundraisers advises groups to use all available channels in order to promote an event and get to as many people as possible. Using social media is a no-brainer, but there are also different avenues like running an advert in a local paper. Use your communication channels to update donors on the fundraiser, too, and remember to thank them for their help once it’s done.
Take stock and improve
Having a successful fundraiser builds momentum for your next. Hand out surveys asking what people enjoyed about the event and how you can improve the next one. You also have the option of going down the old-fashioned route and ask participants during your fundraiser. Who knows — they might even have better fundraiser ideas you can take on in the future.