School Fete Sponsorship

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13. School Fete Sponsorship

Sponsorship is probably the most overlooked and underestimated ingredient to a successful fete. Sponsorship funding can offset the cost of running your fete (sometimes completely) and increase your revenue. 
Business sponsors can provide:

  • financial assistance
  • in-kind help
  • vouchers
  • prizes

But be aware: you won’t be the only one seeking support. That means you will need to start early, know how to ask and what to offer in return. The low-down on sponsorship for grassroots fundraising is detailed in chapter 7, including a full example School Fete Sponsorship proposal.
Look first within your ‘community’ (for example, the families who make up your school).
• A parent I know runs a catering business. She was surprised to learn that her school fete was buying the hamburger buns at the local supermarket and paying full retail price. She offered to order them through her business at wholesale rates — a significant saving. Plus she arranged for the rolls to be delivered on the day, pre-split.
• Another parent is a food distributor. She was able to source and donate gourmet cookies for the fete café.
• A parent who works in the public service was able to put  his school in touch with marketing people in a government department who provided bundles of stickers as token prizes. It cost nothing but the kids all thought they were winners!
school fete sponsorship
Some aspects of sponsorship are unique to events like fetes. For example, Karen, whom I consider a ‘fete guru’ for her successes, explains how she uses cash donations from sponsors to offset costs:
A $50 cash donation from a butcher is used to buy sausages for the barbecue; a similar cash donation from a greengrocer buys some of the salad. The barbecue would carry a sign saying it was proudly sponsored by the butcher and the greengrocer.
Similarly, a cash donation from the local haberdashery offsets craft material spending.
Chapter 7 explains the importance of thanking sponsors. Karen took this to a whole new level by inviting sponsors to the fete. She requested
that they come at a certain time and then offered drinks and canapés in a ‘Sponsors’ tent’ as a show of appreciation. This seasoned fundraiser wasn’t only being appreciative: she was ensuring sponsors had no hesitation in saying ‘yes’ to continued support! And of course, their generosity was recorded in the fete manual.
Go to next chapter: Fete Volunteers
Go to previous chapter: Fete program
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Originally published 16 April, 2015

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