For school cheer and dance programs, cheer fundraising is a critical part of a group’s success and ability to participate and compete. Expenses for coaching, uniforms, camps, competitions, and other program requirements add up quickly, and fundraising becomes an important necessity for the long season cheerleaders are involved in.
Luckily, there are multiple opportunities to raise money throughout the year and lots of great fundraising opportunities to help with overhead costs and expenses. It is critical to identify what your group needs, how much money is required, and how long it will take to achieve those goals before jumping into a new project. When it comes to fundraising, don’t forget that “less is more”; it’s better to focus energy on one or two big cheerleading fundraisers in the season than to run multiple, semi-successful fundraisers that will end up leaving parents and the community burnt out.
Cheer squads generally have more flexibility than other sports groups thanks to their reputation for being creative, peppy, and fun-spirited. The community welcomes and expects something new and exciting from them. With this is mind, you are sure to give more established/consistently fundraised groups like basketball and baseball teams a run for their money!
Squads have more flexibility than other groups, thanks to their reputation as being creative and fun-spirited. People tend to expect something creative and spontaneous from these enthusiastic girls!
For the perfect cheerleading fundraiser, Mixed Bag Designs has got you covered. We offer adorable totes, reusable bags and accessories that are sure to be a hit with cheerleading Moms and any green-loving suburban family. Orders are packaged per student’s orders and your sales rep will work with you every step of the way to make the process go seamlessly, from providing free catalogs and discounted samples to sending custom cover letters and promotional email templates to kick-off your fundraiser.
If a reusable bag fundraiser isn’t in your radar right now and you need a short-term solution, here area few ideas to raise funds for your squad.
1. Hold a mini-camp for aspiring cheerleaders.
During the summer, consider holding a training camp for young/hopeful cheerleaders between the ages of 8-12. Parents are usually happy to pay for summer fun for their girls, and it helps them prepare for their future cheer career future and put their best food forward for upcoming tryouts in the years to come. Have your girls work with participants in groups and teach basic skills, and plan a special performance for parents at the end of the camp.
2. Cheer Cans
At the beginning of the season, have a small party or get-together with the group and have everyone bring a coffee can. Spend the evening decorating cans with various craft supplies like glitter, pipe cleaner, construction papers, print outs, and stickers. Have each girl find a convenience store or local business to place their can. The object of the can is to draw as much attention and change as possible. The girl who raises the most money with her can might get a prize at the end of the season.
A great way to entertain the crowd and raise money is to host a kick-a-thon during half time during a game. Start “training” at the beginning of the year until your girls can work up to 2 minutes of solid kicks. Get supporters and parents to make pledges for a set amount or pledge-per-kick. Not only will you have fun raising money, your girls will have great height on their kicks when it comes to competition! You could also host a cheer-a-thon, getting sponsors to pledge per hour based on how long the girls can cheer. Communities love this and will come support your cheer-a-thon!
Find a park or area that you can borrow, such as a local church, to host a rock-a-thon. Have each cheer member bring their own rocking chair and get donations and pledges from businesses and friends according to how many hours the girls can rock. It’s a fun way for the girls to spend time together and bond while making money for their season’s expenses.
Some additional tips for a successful cheer fundraiser include establish a clear goal along the lines cheerleader to camp without expense to parents” or “To send the team to competition.” It crucial to get parents on board from the beginning and explain how important their support and help will be, and let them know that their cooperation will directly results in fewer costs to them. Lastly, get your cheer squad involved in the community. Get them talking to groups like United Way, American Cancer Society, and any other programs that will teach them about community involvement and expose their presence. That way, when you need to solicit or ask for donations, you’re already an established member of the community.
Photo by K. Gardner