Where to find sponsorship and donations

Do you want to know where you can find sponsors and donors for your school fete or fundraising event?

Our school is about six months away from our first ever fete, which means we are in the thick of trying to find sponsors and donations to help us pay for all the exciting stalls and rides we plan to have at our event.

It’s important to be creative when searching for sponsorship. No business should be disregarded because it’s too small (or too big) or because their product/service isn’t immediately relevant to a fun-loving fete community. It’s all about making connections and being a little inventive. Some suggestions are a little cheeky.

Once you start brainstorming associations with your proposed stalls, you will suddenly see just how many options you have, and business you may never have considered.

This is a modified version of a document we created, listing a range of companies that we could target based on the stalls we were planning. We put a minimum donation on each category, but you can do something different. This is our first fete so we had relatively low sponsorship goals, I know of more established events which can request $5,000 Gold sponsorships. What you offer in return for sponsorship dollars in terms of marketing and promotion is the subject of another article.

This article aims to encourage you to think outside the box and consider alternative places to find sponsorship dollars.

Brown: Sponsor a portaloo

Suggested investment: $50

Sponsorship goes towards: hiring portable toilets for the event

Businesses to approach: plumbers, pool cleaners, cleaning companies, electricians and other trades, tree lopping companies

I thought it would be fun to have signs on each portaloo door with some toilet humour:

Toilet paper: what a rip off! [Portapotty brought to you by Those Pool Guys]

Did you hear the joke about the toilet? Never mind, it’s too dirty. [Portapotty brought to you by The Tap Doctor]

Red: Sponsor a game

Suggested investment: $100

Sponsorship goes towards: purchase and building of games and prizes (here are some DIY games) or check out my Pinterest page for more ideas: https://www.pinterest.com.au/fundraisingmums/diy-fundraising-ideas/

Businesses to approach:

Chocolate Toss – local chocolate makers, local bakeries and patisserie,

Chocolate Wheel – local mechanics, tyre and auto businesses, roadside assist

Lucky Dips – news agents

The fishing game – fishing and tackle supplies, fish’n’chip shops, seafood restaurants, pet shops

Human Fruit Machine – farmers’ markets, greengrocer

Pool noodle games – pool supplies, pool cleaning companies

Pick a Duck – toy shops, bathroom renovators, plumbers, pet shops

Bronze: Sponsor a Stall

Suggested investment: $250

Sponsorship goes towards: purchasing supplies/ingredients for the stall

Businesses to approach:

Face painting – local beauticians, toy shops

Crazy Hair – local hairdressers and barbers

Silent Disco – book shops, music stores, music teachers, hearing clinics, gyms

Tombola – toy shops, $2 shops, thrift shops

Cupcake decorating – bakeries, patisseries, kitchen supply shops, cleaning companies

Petting Zoo/Pet Stall – pet supply shops, vets, pet shops, childcare centres

Garden/Flower stall – florists, garden centres, gardeners, local garden/lawn maintenance businesses

Second-hand Books – book shops, newsagents, thrift shops

Sausage sizzle – local butchers, bakers, Bunnings, local fire brigade (they won’t be able to sponsor but they might come and visit)

Bar – bottle shops, local pubs, hire companies, local pharmacy, taxi company

Drinks/Icecreams/slushies – local icecream shops, air conditioning companies, ice skating rinks

Silver: Sponsor a major prize

Suggested investment: $500 (Sponsors would have to donate the full cost of the prize, which would be auctioned or raffled)

Businesses to approach:

Brand new trampoline – garden supplies, toy stores, local GP, pharmacy,

New bike – bike shops, mechanics, local gyms

Weekend staycation – childcare centres

Gold: Sponsor a major ride/amusement

Suggested investment: $1,000 (Sponsors would have to donate the full cost of the amusement/ride/inflatable with any excess going to other areas of need)

Major rides include Bouncy castles, Inflatable obstacle course, Sumo suits, Rock climbing wall, Ropes Course, Zorb water balls, dunking machine, little carousels and roller coasters for young children

Businesses to approach – any of the above, real estate agents, major corporations (ask your school community if they work for companies who have regular community giving), local independent grocers

Rainbow: Goods and In–kind Donations

Sometimes businesses may not be able to sponsor your event with cold hard cash, but they might be able to provide goods, services and in-kind donations. These are some of the extra things you can ask for:

Qualified Electrician – approach company directly

Donation of cold-storage (mobile cool-room/freezers) – approach hire companies, local independent grocers

Toilet paper – plumbers, independent grocers

Printed caps/hats/t-shirts/aprons etc (ie uniform) for volunteers – printing companies, clothing companies, real estate agents

Disposable plates, cups and cutlery (for food stalls) – local restaurants, food halls, pubs/bistro, cleaning services

Bottled water/lollies – accountancy firms, other white-collar companies

Printing and signage (signs, flyers, posters, letter-drops, programs etc) – printing companies, stationary/business supply companies

Roving performers (stilts, clowns, fairies, Santa, Santa’s helpers) – local drama clubs

Fairy lights/lighting hire – lighting shops, electricians

Sound system/PA hire – other schools, local DJs or bands, local council

Band/musicians – local high school, local drama/music centres

Skip hire (rubbish) – approach company directly, cleaning companies

If you have any other great ideas of where to find sponsorship dollars, please share them in the comments.

Author: Shannon Meyerkort

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