LeanStream Engagement Team
Fun and funds – two things that most schools would love to have more. Especially during these rather dull times. Students would absolutely love to have a bit more fun mixed with their routine curricular activities. So we've put together this two-part Fun Run Guide to help create a digital and successful Fun Run. You can read our Fun Run Guide Pt. 2- here!
We know that as a teacher, coach, or perhaps someone in the PTA/PTO, you have so many wonderful ideas, so many exciting new projects that you could execute if you just had the means. Projects that would create an even better learning environment for those who matter the most – the students.
Fun-to-do school fundraising activities like a Fun Run provide you the opportunity to do just that! Kids will enjoy a fun activity, and your school will benefit from the generosity of the contributors. Best of both worlds!
Be it the new comfortable furniture that the classrooms need, or the new table-tennis table that the students want. Or anything else in your mind that you think your school needs, a successful Fun Run event can raise the required donations. But only if executed impeccably!
Of course, that is easier said than done!
School fundraising activities may look like they are all fun and games. But on the back-end, meticulous planning and flawless execution are required to make it a fruitful event.
Whether your school is on campus or doing virtual sessions, at LeanStream, we have the perfect, tailor-made solutions for your school to help digitize your school fundraiser campaigns and raise a lot more money by increasing your reach.
Our specialized team will work hand-in-glove with you to help digitize your school fundraising event and help you get the most out of it.
With our years of experience, we have observed that many people are willing to give, but they are unable to attend the school fundraising event physically. Therefore, they are not able to give donations. We make it happen by making it truly convenient for the contributors to donate in a way that works for everyone.
Take Jim Pearson Elementary, for example. As a part of our client district, Alexander City Schools, Jim Pearson's PTO was able to digitize their 3rd Annual Fun Run using our online platform and it was a huge success!
We will have more details about Jim Pearson PTO's story next week in Fun Run Guide Pt. 2: How To Make It Successful?, but first, let’s discuss how to plan and execute a Fun Run fundraiser. We'll get into who we are and what strategies we follow at LeanStream, later.
What is a Fun Run School Fundraising Event?
In simple words, a Fun Run is a pleasurable, stress-free, athletic activity in which the participants are running but not exactly competing with each other. Fun Runs are a popular fundraising activity that many schools do to raise funds and let everybody be a part of it.
Imagine a friendly race at your school where the kids have no pressure. There are no losers, only winners. That is exactly what a Fun Run is. It can be held both indoors and outdoors. The participants can be the students, parents, teachers, or anyone really!
Points To Consider While Planning a Fun Run
Here is a quick breakdown of how you should plan and execute a successful Fun Run at your school. Let this serve as a broad guideline. Of course, you can add or omit any points as you consider fit.
Set the Objectives
You don’t want all that money to just lie around and wait until you think of something to do with it after the event is over. You must have clear objectives in your mind for which you are planning the event. Before planning for anything else, do the following:
- Identify the needs for which you want to raise the donations.
- Discuss with your peers. Generate discussion and get suggestions from your coworkers.
- Estimate costs by getting the quotations.
- Get approval from the relevant authority.
- Set and announce the target amount you want to raise.
- Communicate the goals so donors understand where the money will go.
Date, Time & Venue for the School Fundraising Event
It is all up to you. Get in touch with the school administration and look for those lean slots in the annual planner. Or even better, merge your Fun Run school fundraising event with a PE class or activity. This will give it an additional curriculum aspect too.
Make sure it is not too hot or too cold outside. A pleasant weather outlook would definitely result in more people attending the event, thus making it successful.
Alternatively, or as a backup plan in case of a downpour, you can prepare the school basketball court or the gym for the event and make it an indoor activity.
Give yourself enough time to prepare. We suggest that you should start planning 45-60 days ahead of Fun Run Day.
Don’t take it lightly. There is a lot to be done to make the event successful.
Communicate With the Parents
At the very onset, let the students’ parents know about the Fun Run school fundraising activity and why the school wants to raise funds. We recommend you do this using formal means of communication such as a letter.
Compose a detailed yet simple-to-read letter that talks about the event and have all the relevant information. Explain the objectives, followed by the date, time, and venue of the fundraising event.
Let the parents know that this Fun Run will not only be a memorable event for the kids but will also contribute towards raising funds for the school. Let them know that the new procurements and projects undertaken with the help of these funds will create an even better learning environment for their kids at school.
Training the Kids
Yes, it is a Fun Run, but you still want the kids to perform their best. They need to be in shape and know what is coming ahead.
Involve the PE instructors. Start with a run over shorter distances and gradually increase the distance. It all has to be in a fun environment. No pressures, only fun.
Also, let the kids know what it is all about, and rest assured, they too will get personally involved in the activity.
Distance, Rules, and Incentives
The Fun Run can be time-based, lap-based, or distance-based. Everything works as long as it is fun and not tiresome.
Take into consideration the age of the kids and decide the distance from the start to finish line accordingly. You can even set individual targets for the kids too. Kids with special abilities or conditions such as asthma may have a different finish line than the rest of the group.
The most important consideration for you must be to create a sense of participation and accomplishment for everyone.
The mantra is: “no losers, only winners!”
When it comes to the incentives, you may give away souvenirs or small gift items based on the contributions. Wristbands, custom print T-shirts, reusable water bottles, or books - anything will do. After all, it's not about the gifts. It's all about that sense of achievement!
Reach Out to the School Fundraising Donors
The most important part. Reach out to your existing or prospective donors through letters, emails, social media, or even print and electronic media.
Tell them your story, relevant details, and end with a call to action.
Give Convenient Payment Options to the Donors
Besides the conventional payment methods like cash or checks, you must also give more diverse and convenient payment options to your donors. At LeanStream, we specialize in designing customized digital fundraising solutions according to your school’s needs.
Through our System-Wide Feature Need, we go that extra mile to make sure that your big dreams for your school will come true. We do it by ensuring that your business donors get noticed through displayed logos, special recognition, and more. We also enable transaction-fee-less pledging so that large amounts of donations can still be paid with checks without any additional fees. You can also associate a specific gift with schools, clubs, and classrooms. The sky is the limit!
You can even set up a unique QR code for your Fun Run school fundraising event and display blown-up prints all around the campus at visible places. The QR code can also be shared on the school website or social media – be it Facebook, Instagram, Snapchat, or Twitter. Reach out to people beyond your city or state.
Tracking, accounting, donor information, and reporting – let LeanStream handle it all professionally. Or perhaps you have a new idea... Let us know, and we’ll help you get it done.
Contact us now, and we’ll get back to you in no time.
Fun Run school fundraisers are fun, high-energy, and exciting athletic events that create a sense of achievement in everyone involved. They can really help you reach that target amount that you aim to achieve in your fundraiser, but only if planned and conducted properly.
Looking to try new and innovative ways to digitize your school fundraising event and engage more people in less time? LeanStream is here for you!
To read our next blog, Fun Run Guide Pt. 2: How To Make It Successful, click here!
Check out our other blogs that share useful information on how to make your school fundraising event a successful one.