The Importance of Fundraising for Daycares: Daycare Fundraising Ideas for Child Care Centers 

The Importance of Fundraising for Daycares: Daycare Fundraising Ideas for Child Care Centers 

Many childcare facilities struggle with devising strategies to raise money to cover child care expenses relating to the business. Operating a preschool is expensive. Outdoor play equipment and learning supplies are essential for every daycare, and they’re expensive purchases. 

Many daycare facilities resort to fundraising activities to help them raise the capital they need to cover operational expenses. Without these fundraisers, they can't keep the doors open. 

Taking care of children and raising the next generation of Americans is vital to the future of this great nation. Without daycares, one of the parents will need to stay home to give the kids the attention and care they need during the day. This situation leads to financial strife for the family and a lower quality of life for the children and parents. 

We have some fun and effective daycare fundraising ideas to help your business achieve its revenue goals. These ideas are easy to execute and offer great returns for your business. Daycares are getting harder to find, and they offer parents a valuable service they can't live without, especially if both partners work full-time. 

Read through our list of great preschool fundraising ideas and select a few that resonate with your daycare’s values. 

Classic Daycare Fundraising Ideas & Activities

These classic daycare fundraising ideas offer preschools awesome fundraising opportunities. Everyone loves snacking or dining on some fast food as they enjoy a fun time with their family. Food is a top choice for fundraisers, and there are plenty of options. 

Snack-based fundraising ideas create excellent add-on fundraising tools that collaborate with daytime events, which we’ll discuss later in this article. They offer preschools a chance to boost profits at events and raise more cash for their financial needs. 

Popcorn, Snack, and Cookie Dough Fundraisers

Everyone loves popcorn, and it’s easy to make! Hire a popcorn machine for the day and start popping kernels. Snacks are a great fundraising tool for your daycare, and they’re affordable to make, with low input costs and excellent profit margins. 

Cookie dough is another top choice for a snack fundraiser idea—eat it raw or let the kids take it home to make tasty cookies with their parents. Everyone will have a good time baking their favorite chocolate chip cookies, and the smell of them in the oven will drive their senses wild with excitement!

Candle and Lollipop Fundraisers

Scented candles are cheap to purchase in bulk, and you can get them on consignment from a manufacturer, paying only for what you sell. They come in a wide variety of scents and colors to suit anyone's preference. Give Mom a candle and let her relax in a bath, melting her stress away.

Lollipops are another excellent fundraising item. Kids love them, and so do adults! They’re inexpensive to purchase in bulk quantities and come in various shapes, sizes, and flavors. Collaborate with a local candy supplier to get a discount on the purchase price and boost your profit margins.

Bake Sale Fundraiser

Imagine the smell of freshly baked cupcakes wafting through the air. Lemon poppy, choc-chip, vanilla, and bran are just a few of the types of muffins and cupcakes that make good choices for a bake sale fundraiser for your daycare. Partner with a local bakery and get a range of tasty baked treats for your fundraiser. 

Ice Cream Fundraiser

Speak to a local creamery and host an ice cream social for your daycare fundraiser. Splash out with toppings and get a range of flavors everyone can enjoy. Kids go nuts for ice cream, and the folks love it too! Partner with supermarkets for the ice cream if you don’t have a local creamery nearby and stock up on sugar cones, cups, and spoons to give people an option to enjoy their ice cream the way they like it. 

Pancake Breakfast Fundraisers

Pancakes are simple to make and a low-cost item with huge profit potential. Host a pancake breakfast fundraiser before school on Friday or on the weekend alongside another fundraising idea like a sports day. Collaborate with a local supermarket and get discounts on flour, eggs, milk, and syrup to reduce your fundraiser's expenses and maximize profits.

Chili Cook-Off Fundraiser

Hosting a chili cookoff for your fundraiser idea offers a chance to build your community and create a sense of competition and excitement that’s fun for the kids and their parents. Award the best chili recipe a ribbon and make it an annual event where parents and kids can compete for the title of the best chili in town. It’s another great fundraising idea that works well alongside other events. Keep everyone entertained and bring together the entire community to spread awareness of your fundraising initiatives. 

Pizza Bingo Fundraiser

Sell tickets to a pizza bingo afternoon event. Let students and parents have fun playing bingo while they stuff themselves with unlimited pizza. Partner with a local pizza shop and get a range of pies, from pepperoni to chili beef and spicy chicken! Offer prizes for the bingo winners and lollipops as awards to all the kids who participate. Hire an emcee to ramp up the excitement in the crowd as players hit bingo.

Straw Draw Fundraiser

This fundraising idea is easy to execute. Host it before the start of the school day, when the kids leave to go home, or during a break. Buy a pack of straws and write the name of a prize on a piece of paper. Roll the paper into the stra and get the kids to blow out the paper to reveal their prize. Prizes can include cookies at lunchtime or extra playtime.

Creative & Engaging Fundraising Ideas for Child Care Facilities 

These events encourage interaction between the kids and parents. They stimulate the mind and keep everyone engaged. Sell tickets to the event and use an online event management platform like PayBee, alongside social media, to promote and market your event for optimal attendance on the day. 

These events also combine with the food fundraising ideas we previously discussed, giving you a way to boost your profits and make more money to achieve your daycare’s financial goals.

Partner With Food Stores & Offer Master Class Fundraisers

Partnering with food stores in your local area can help your daycare reduce expenses related to setting up and executing your daycare fundraiser. Food stores are usually willing to help out and give you discounted rates on food purchases, and some might even donate a portion or all of the food you need for the event. 

Local businesses can provide skill-sharing classes as prizes for raffles and auctions in your daycare fundraising efforts. For instance, partner with a cooking school for free cooking lessons on how to make nutritious meals that kids will love. Or tech companies that offer digital classes on using tools that benefit kids' and adults' learning experiences. 

Talent Show Fundraisers

Every parent loves seeing their children on stage singing and dancing. Sell tickets to a gala event or a talent show where parents can help their kids prepare a song or dance to show off their skills. Promote the event to family members and get everyone involved in enjoying the kid's big night under the lights. 

Concerts are a great way to build kids' communication and social skills. It gives them a role that makes them feel important, preparing them for adult life. Parents will gladly pay a small fee to get the opportunity to record videos and snap pictures of their kids on stage. Collaborate with a local venue like a concert hall if the daycare doesn't have the space to host the event. 

Parents Date Night Fundraisers

Give the parents a break from their kids by hosting a silent auction or raffle where you give away a dinner for two at a local restaurant in town. These venues will be happy to oblige with a free dinner or at least discount the menu price.

Or raffle away tickets for a night at the cinema or a musical production in your local area. Parents can enter the competition without being on-site for the raffle or auction - you can host it through a virtual event software like PayBee and give the winners their tickets by sending them home with the kids. 

Food & Flower Fundraisers

If your daycare has a large outdoor space, convert it into a food garden. It’s a great way to teach children the value of food and how to grow it from scratch. Have them help with the soil preparation and planting and split them into teams to handle the maintenance.

When your food and flowers are ready for harvesting, host a harvest party and sell the organic produce to parents, restaurants, or local markets to raise cash. 

Easter Egg Hunt Fundraiser

Kids love the excitement of searching for goodies. Host an easter egg hunt at your school or an outdoor venue where the kids can run around. Sell tickets before the event and set up food and drink stands at the event, or use some of the prior food fundraising ideas we mentioned in the previous section. 

Summer Carnival Fundraiser

Plan an outdoor event when the weather warms up in the summer. Host it at the school if you have the space on te property or collaborate with a venue for a discounted rate or sponsored use of the venue. 

Activities like teacher dunk tanks, face painting, and games give the kids plenty to do, and the parents get plenty of photo opportunities to send to grandma and grandpa. 

Pajama Day Fundraiser

Who doesn't like spending a day in their pajamas? Plan a pajama day fundraiser and notify the parents a few weeks in advance. Let the kids wear their favorite night clothes to school for a nominal fee. It’s a highly effective fundraising idea, and it gives the kids a chance to enjoy nap time in their favorite bedclothes. 

Lantern Release Fundraiser

Plan a lantern release party for a warm summer night. Seeing dozens of beautiful lanterns drift up into the night sky is a breathtaking event to behold and a great way to teach the kids about the wonders of space, the Solar System, the Milky Way, and the Universe. 

Charge parents per lantern and set up a donations table so parents can add extra funds to their ticket sales and raise more money at the event. This event is a great way to end a summer carnival.

Haunted House Fundraiser

Create a haunted house at the preschool and charge parents to attend the event and walk through the house. You can also add it to your summer carnival fundraising idea. Dress the kids up as ghosts, zombies, witches, or wizards, and let them scare the adults or community as they walk through the haunted house—the giggles will never end!

Leveraging Business and Community Support for Daycare Fundraising

Raising Money for Daycares in Collaboration with Small Businesses

Hosting a daycare fundraiser requires money to buy the event's food, materials, and necessities. Many daycares don't have the cash flow to set up and organize these events. Fortunately, there are other strategies that help preschools source the funds and equipment they need to hold a fundraiser. 

Many local businesses are willing to contribute partially or wholly to the finances of a daycare fundraiser. They’ll provide venues, food, tables and chairs, other products, or money to get the fundraiser off the ground.

In exchange, the business might want your daycare to announce its sponsorship of the event. For instance, if you’re hosting a summer carnival, adding the business logo to the tickets, shouting them out on social media, or allowing them to advertise at the event site might be all they need to offer you assistance with your fundraiser.

A local supermarket might offer assistance with the food, provided you advertise their sponsorship of the event. Parents must buy their food somewhere, and they’ll likely purchase from stores that give back to their kids and the community at large. 

You don't need to rely on a single sponsor for the event. Multiple companies in the area can sign up for sponsorships for your fundraiser. Offer a tiered sponsorship package where companies can pay different amounts to receive a sliding scale of benefits from their sponsorship. 

Small businesses might sponsor equipment like popcorn machines for your fundraiser, or they’ll offer to cover the costs of gift wrap for your gift wrap station at the local mall. You’ll need to make a concerted effort with prospecting for sponsorships, but it’s worth the effort. The goal is to create a win-win scenario for your daycare and the business. 

Setting Up a Fundraising Committee for Your Daycare Fundraiser

Daycares can range from small operations to large facilities. Teachers, staff, and parents all require coordination to make the fundraiser a success. Ensuring you’re organized is key and requires careful consideration of people management and communications. The bigger the daycare, the more vital it is to pay attention to the following points.

Start the planning phase for your daycare fundraiser by identifying your revenue target. Communicate them to the parents well in advance of the event. For instance, “We hope to raise $X from our fundraiser, and we can only do it with your help.” Using tools like revenue thermometers leading up to and on the day of the event creates a visual representation of your goal and how close you are to achieving it. 

Prepare a list of volunteers willing to give their time to help at the event. These volunteers could be staff members, teachers, and parents willing to help out on or before the day. Summarize their responsibilities, such as collecting funds, sourcing materials, or finding sponsors. 

Look at your calendar and plan a list of weekly coordination meetings between the volunteers to ensure everything stays on track leading up to the fundraiser. This strategy gives you time to tackle any bottlenecks that emerge in the planning phase. 

Collect your volunteers' email addresses and phone numbers to keep everyone in the loop with regular communications on the fundraiser's progress leading up to the day. 

Motivate your daycare fundraiser volunteers to keep morale high and boost their efforts to achieve your planning goals. 

Use an online event fundraising platform like PayBee to assign roles to volunteers and create a centralized hub to track contributions and progress. 

Offer volunteers prizes or incentives for reaching milestones in your fundraising progress, such as who sells the most tickets to your summer carnival or talent show. 

Publicly recognize the top performers in your volunteer pool to add more motivation for other volunteers to do more with their efforts. Keep it competitive, but make it light and enjoyable in a pressure-free environment. Over-stressing your volunteers may create a counter-effect and reduce motivation. 

Thank the volunteers for their efforts on the day of the fundraiser.

The planning stage should also incorporate a safety briefing relevant to the fundraising event and tasks. For instance, if the fundraising events involve going door-to-door to sell cookies or baked goods, ensure all children have an adult chaperone accompanying them. 

Never enter someone's house, even if they invite the kids in. Ensure that the parents don't carry large amounts of money on them and arrange for a team to collect the funds periodically to reduce cash held while prospecting.

Fun, Innovative Fundraising Ideas to Boost Profit-Taking

Here are a few other unique and innovative fundraising ideas to maximize your profit taking with daycare fundraisers. These events can occur off-site of the daycare and involve other businesses or facilities willing to help out with your fundraising efforts. 

Trike-a-thon & Resource Fair Fundraisers

A trike-a-thon or walk-a-thon offers kids a way to have fun and boosts their competitive nature. It attracts a large crowd, and there are ample opportunities for ticket sales with parents, family members, and the local community. 

Hosting the event at a local bike park or community center is a great way to draw a crowd and provide seating for the event. Include food stalls for snacks and water or sodas to keep everyone hydrated and well-fed during the event. 

Corporate Matching Fundraiser

Prospect with local corporations to match your donations. For instance, if a donor gifts $100, the corporation will match that donation, giving your daycare a total of $200 in funds raised. Many corporations have philanthropy programs they claim back on their Corporate Social Responsibility for tax breaks. So, they’re probably willing to match donations. 

If you have a parent whose kids attend the daycare and work for a large corporation, ask them to get you a foot in the door with management to pitch your fundraiser and donation matching opportunities. 

Coin Drive Fundraisers 

A coin drive fundraiser involves placing domination jars at local businesses in the area. People can donate their spare change to your daycare. It might seem like a minuscule way to raise funds, but if you have enough jars placed strategically throughout the community, these donations add up to a considerable amount. 

Silent Auction Daycare Fundraisers

Prospect with local businesses and ask them to donate items for a silent or super silent auction. These events can take place live at the daycare and broadcast virtually to online platforms. It’s a great way to improve your reach into your target audience, and parents don't even need to be on-site to participate. A virtual auctioning platform like PayBee can help you set up and execute the event and promote it on social media to maximize your attendance. 

Digital Fundraising Strategies for Daycares

Fundraising strategies for daycare centers are going digital. Social media and online fundraising platforms offer child care funding opportunities beyond the conventional on-site and physical tactics of the past. 

Many parents can’t attend physical fundraising events because they lead busy lives. So, online strategies and resources allow you to broaden your reach and boost profit opportunities for preschool fundraising activities. 

Social media provides excellent reach for your marketing campaigns using organic or paid advertising tactics. Promote your daycare fundraisers and fundraiser ideas to your followers and parents living near your location to bolster awareness of your business and daycare fundraising activities and events.

Online platforms like PayBee let you host hybrid fundraising events like silent auctions without parents needing to be physically present. Sell tickets for your live events and reach out to donors to encourage participation and increase attendance. 

Automate your campaigns' follow-up process and management to get more families interested in supporting your daycare facility. The PayBee platform provides tax receipts for donations and ticket sales, allowing tip functionality to bolster your revenue collection efforts.

Communicate with your volunteers and garner support for your daycare fundraising activities and events. Leveraging the power of the internet to get more support for your initiatives is a no-brainer in today's hyperconnected world.

FAQs: Common Questions About Daycare Fundraising

Q: Why are fundraisers so important for daycare facilities? 

A: Daycare facilities require annual fundraising events to prevent passing on the escalating costs of operating childcare facilities to working parents who are already dealing with the effects of rising living costs.

Q: Why is childcare so important for American parents?

A: 53% of adults between 25 and 54 are working parents, and 37% of these parents have young children. 

Q: Is the US childcare industry growing or contracting?

A: According to data from the US Census Bureau’s Current Population Survey, the childcare workforce in America contracted by 11% since the advent of the pandemic in 2020. In 2021 alone, 98,200 workers left the childcare industry.

Q: Why is child care so important for African American mothers?

A: According to data compiled by the US Census Bureau’s Current Population Survey, 62% of African American mothers with young children are single parents. This figure is 38% for Latin-American mothers and 21% for Caucasian mothers.

Q: What are the costs of child care in the United States?

A: According to the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis, the average annual cost of daycare in America is $10,900 per child, representing around 15% of the median household income.

Conclusion: The Impact of Successful Fundraising on Daycares 

Daycare facilities lack the government support available to other social and community programs managed by government agencies. Therefore, fundraising events are vital to keep these facilities operational and assist working parents. 

Without daycare facilities, working parents deal with increased pressure on their time and income. Reductions in daycare facilities and providers across the United States will have a detrimental effect on child development and the shaping of the next generation of Americans. 

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