Top 6 Church Fundraising Ideas That Work

For people all across the world, the word family means more than just individuals sharing a home. For many, their family also encompasses members of a larger community: a group of individuals who share a bond beyond DNA—their faith-based and church community. When your faith-based community needs help, you offer them your assistance with open arms and a caring heart through organizing church fundraisers. Check out these church fundraising ideas to boost your GoFundMe fundraiser, whether for a family in need, a mission, a choir group, a church youth group, a Sunday school program, or a holiday market.

In 2021, a Pew Research Center study found that 63% of American adults affiliate with at least one religious denomination. When your faith-based community needs help, you offer them your assistance with open arms and a caring heart through organizing church fundraisers. No matter your faith, online fundraising makes it easy to collect donations and resources for your church, temple, mosque, synagogue, or any other religious group or community. Check out these church fundraising ideas to boost your GoFundMe fundraiser, whether for a family in need, a mission, a choir group, a church youth group, a Sunday school program, or a holiday market.

Six fundraising ideas for churches and faith-based organizations

1. Youth groups, choirs, and classes

You likely have individual groups as part of your house of worship who all need a boost with their budget. Starting church fundraisers doesn’t have to be complex. After determining the amount each group has to raise, create separate Teams GoFundMe fundraisers for each activity—$500 for the choir, $250 for Sunday school, and so on.

This way, people can donate to their preferred team. Introduce some friendly competition to motivate everyone to fundraise the most they can and brainstorm some faith fundraising ideas to share on TikTok, Instagram, and even Nextdoor.

2. Faith-based telegrams

A practical, faith-based fundraising idea involves offering hand-delivered gifts from community members in exchange for donations. It can be centered around any religious occasion and is a great way to incorporate youth group fundraising into your community. The key is to make it an action rather than just a gift. Ask the youth group to promote it in social media, including Instagram.

It could mean singing telegrams, Christmas carols, gifting candles during Hanukkah, or handing out treats during Eid. It’s a unique opportunity to connect with donors and strengthen community ties.

3. Scavenger hunt

There are many unique fundraising ideas for churches, such as organizing a fun scavenger hunt for a holiday and requesting donations for participation.

Everyone loves a good Easter egg hunt! But you can also do a family-friendly scavenger hunt with clues related to the holiday or faith to reach a church fundraiser goal. This is an excellent chance to invite other community members to come together and enjoy some fun activities.

Encourage participants to share their search on social media and use a specific hashtag to allow others to follow along with the competition.

4. Holiday potluck

Of all the church fundraiser ideas, this one is a classic. Pick a day for a potluck dinner—it can be on a specific day of the week, like Shabbat, or a holiday, like Easter Sunday. Use your online fundraiser to organize what you want everyone to bring to the potluck.

Ask supporters to donate to your fundraiser instead of buying a ticket for the potluck. A potluck is one of the best ways to raise money while you chat about the food with whoever made it—and if you’re lucky, maybe they’ll share their family recipes.

5. Discussion conference

Church fundraisers don’t always need to be high-energy events. You can host a conference to share your faith with others and inspire them to contribute to funding lectures, talks, and panels with a donation for admission. The church youth groups can volunteer and help with set up.

You can record videos of the workshops and best talks and add them to your church, temple, synagogue, or mosque’s website. Only accessible for a small donation to your GoFundMe fundraiser.

6. Plug into Giving Tuesday

Looking to raise funds for your next mission trip or church choir competition? Take advantage of Giving Tuesday—a global day of giving—and watch as your fundraising goals are met and exceeded. Use social media, WhatsApp, and email to spread the word and see how your community rallies behind your cause.

Examples of successful church fundraisers

Arise from the ashes

With only 36 square feet, Missionary Independent Spiritual Church has been called the “smallest church in the world” but has served as a haven to many in the town of Forestville, California, and serves as a perfect example for small church fundraising ideas. When a recent fire destroyed the place of worship, the community was called into action by Deacon Millett, who created a campaign to fund the rebuild. He gave rewards to donors so that their contributions were met with various symbols of appreciation and gratitude. In less than one month’s time, they surpassed their goal of $10,000 and will soon be on their way to holding services once again.

Elevate your faith

The Daughters of Saint Paul in Culver City reached out to their community when they needed a lift—literally. With a broken elevator, these six sisters had been forced to scale the three flights of stairs up to their convent above the bookstore and media center where they worked. These lively ladies took to using video to bring their plight to life as they climbed the steep flights of stairs while singing Climb Every Mountain with smiles spread across their faces. In just under a month, the campaign raised enough funds to get their elevator fixed up so the sisters could save their breath for prayers.

Start raising money for your church today

Whether you’re a pastor, a parish member, or a friendly citizen who wants to protect a mainstay in your town, know that others want to help you. After you create your nonprofit fundraiser:

  1. Use the areas where people congregate before service to hang up a printed sign letting others know about your cause.
  2. Don’t underestimate the impact of the spoken word.
  3. Ask to have your church fundraiser mentioned in the announcements at the close of your weekly service.
  4. Check out these church fundraising tips for extra help.

Every cause needs an advocate to stand up and champion the plan into action. You can fill that role. Get started today by creating a fundraiser for your church.