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Our PTA is effectively starting from scratch. What events are manageable to start off with?

(18 Posts)
RubyRioja Mon 01-Oct-07 16:49:16

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ladymuck Mon 01-Oct-07 16:53:02

Apparently a quiz night is one of our top fund-raisers. The costs of setting it up are fairly minimal, so the entrance fee is effectively pure profit. Likewise raffles can give a high return for little input. Christmas/summer/spring fayres require more work, so depends on whether you have a lot of takers for stalls (eg Phoenix card, Usbourne books etc) or whether you have to round up lots of volunteers yourself.

PandaG Mon 01-Oct-07 16:57:35

Very easy - if you do sponsored events,is a sponsoredbounce. Hire a bouncy castle fo rthe day, get parental permission and sponsorship,and each child bounces for 1min,we have 5 children on at once,and 5 adults counting the bounces. Is easy to set up, and rakes in the cash. We do it in the school hall, so ok for any weather. Ask if you want any further detailssmile

RubyRioja Mon 01-Oct-07 17:01:33

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HappyMummyOfOne Mon 01-Oct-07 17:03:18

Ours has just started a lucky numbers club, each parent can pay a £1 a week and if there number is the bonus ball they win £20 - other £29 goes to the PTA funds. Its being collected monthly to save too much hassle and is going down a storm. Parents said they preferred this to endless sponsorship requests.

Think they are also arranging a halloween disco as well.

RubyRioja Mon 01-Oct-07 17:17:04

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Doodledootoo Mon 01-Oct-07 17:18:50

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RubyRioja Mon 01-Oct-07 17:19:34

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Lilymaid Mon 01-Oct-07 17:20:17

Beetle Drive (see thread on this topic earlier today) - nice and easy and involves both children and parents

PandaG Mon 01-Oct-07 17:22:58

Quiz night could be a byo - do a pie and pea or fish and chip supper, should be able toget a good price for bulk order from local chippy. We've also done the tea towels/calendars with children's selfportraits on, this might be a bit young for juniors though.

grendel Mon 01-Oct-07 23:57:41

We find that a cake stall is a quick and easy fundraiser. Send home a paper plate in a plastic food bag together with a brief note to all the children a few days in advance, asking the plate to be returned with a few small cakes on the date of the sale. Plate sitting on the kitchen counter acts as a reminder to busy parents. We always have them on a Monday so that parents have weekend to prepare/buy cakes.
We are a small school (100 pupils) and regularly make £70 a time (for about 20 minutes work setting up and manning stall on day).

Another easy fundraiser is plant sales via a wholesale nursery. We use CD Bell in Norfolk
( in Spring and Autumn (bulbs) and usually make £150 a time. Little effort required. I know other nurseries run similar schemes elsewhere.

If you haven't done so already, join the NCPTA: the members area of their website is full of good ideas.

Beware of all these personalised tea-towel, calendar, Christmas card etc schemes if you are a small school. Look at the finances carefully. We often find that the return on the sale of each item is so low that it is not cost effective to run these promotions in a small school. (Think about the number of families rather than children in your school, then think about how many of them are REALLY likely to buy a packet of Christmas cards.) Obviously this will vary from school to school but if you are a new and small PTA you need to be quite hard-nosed about the amount of financial return per hour of your precious effort!

Good luck!

portonovo Tue 02-Oct-07 10:16:44

Cake stalls here too. Lots of money for not much work. We always have ours Friday because people seem to buy more cakes for the weekend!

Jam-jar tombola - sometimes we run this as a one-off, sometimes as part of a school fayre.
We ask children to decorate a jam-jar (paint, stickers, whatever) and fill it with small gifts - wrapped sweets, small stationery items, hair bobbles, stickers, smellies, small toys etc. Then run it as a normal tombola. Everything is donated so 100% profit.

Other sorts of tombolas are good too - we do a chocolate one every year at the Christmas fayre, and have also done a couple of one-off 'teddy tombolas'. Again, ask for donations of soft toys in clean, good condition, then do a tombola. All our cake stalls and one-off tombolas are done at 3 p.m. immediately after school, so people don't have to come back to school, they can just buy and go home!

Shopping afternoons/evenings - see if you can organise several stallholders to come in (We normally have Usborne books, Bodyshop, Virgin Vie, Phoenix cards and people selling toys, jewellery, candles etc). Each stallholder pays you so much for their 'pitch' (perhaps £10, that's up to you). We also ask for a small donation for a raffle. If you charge per pitch rather than ask for commission, it doesn't matter if they don't sell anything! If it's an afternoon sell refreshments - coffee and home-made cakes. If it's an evening, we charge people £1.50 and their ticket price includes a glass of wine/fruit juice and some nibbles. This gets round the problem of 'selling' alcohol. We have also been known to have extra wine on hand and 'give' that away in exchange for donations...

Sometimes we have combined the shopping evening with a 'pamper' night, where some of the stallholders give facials or do manicures or whatever - students doing beauty courses at the local college will sometimes do this. We charge extra for this.

The key to many of these things is to get as many volunteers as possible. Our committee is only 5-6 people, and ours is a big school, but we have a largish pool of people willing to help out at specific events. Our staff are always helpful this way too.

Peachy Tue 02-Oct-07 10:23:36

Ww're in the same situation, last years PA dwindled to one member (!), this year we have a full committee. We do have some establishd events, but we're also ditchinga few- only taking on what we can do well, iyswim.

First up, we're having a social night- partly as a recruiter. A local restaurant last year (an Indian, nowt posh) did a set meal for 50 for 5.00 a head, we charged £7.50 and its a good way of getting poeple together, in a fun rather than fundraising environment.

Rhen we have the christmas Fayre- thats set i stone for us, but we are varying the attractins. We have a cake stall of course, and all the kids get a non-uniform day in exchange for chocolate, which we then use to run a tombola. We also send each child home with a palstic box (we got donated- only cheap things from food packaging) which they decorate and fill with gifts / sweets to a minimum fo £1, these are sold for £1 a time and prove very popular.

After that, we have ideas but we want to see how things go first, iyswim.

samanthar Tue 02-Oct-07 17:21:05

ours is giving this weblink for shopping a go this year as it really is NO work ..will be interesting to see if it makes anything as it is about training us all to remember that if the washing machine breaks to make an extra click to buy it through this website
ours also had a get to know each other thing for macmillan coffe morning in someone's house. all the proceeds went to macmillan but they gave out pta notices and ppl (RECEPTION) met up informally
ours does quiz and fish and chips but the big money raisers are the summer fayre and christmas fayre. the latter i think is less work on the day and in subsequent years but a lot of leg work finding stall holders willing to pay your pitch fee and then charge veryone £1 to get in etc. the fayre depends too much on the weather but can make a couple of thousand pounds or even teice that (dont ask me how as thats a lot of lucky dips!)
does the school have a parent rep for each class?

bossybritches Tue 02-Oct-07 17:35:53

If your PTa is small try getting people to sign up as a "Friend of PTA". Then you have a pool of people to call on for specific events who might like to pitch in now &then but can't commit to regular meetings.When we update our list every year we ask what things they would like to help with ie cake-baking/summer fayre/evening do's so you know what peoples strengths are & availabiliy.

Oh yes & the School Book Fair,we always have a tea-party on the last night we made over £200 on cakes plus the school got over £250 worth of books.

PeachyFleshCrawlingWithBugs Tue 02-Oct-07 19:07:53

We're doing a aprent rep thing atm, struggling with the yr2's (oldest year group in our school) as the Mum's have erm, issues with a PA scenario from a few years back when the parents got a bit too pushy (I am told- we were late to the school).

Samanthar good on you doing the Macmillan Coffee Morning- used to work for them (fundraising, am no angel!) so know the money will be very well used indeed.

Kaz33 Tue 02-Oct-07 19:18:32

We use:

We made £170 since November last year. Get stickers made so people can put them on their computers so they don't forget.

littlerach Tue 02-Oct-07 19:24:56

We do a Ladie Night which is little work really.
Just hiring out thr tables, then doing tickets to sell.
We made over £500 at the last one.
Cake stalls always do well.
We also did Valentine cookies last year and sold them at lokcal businesses. This made us £300, with a number of people volunteering to bake.
Also plant sale in the spring. Again, we rely on people to volunteer to grow seeds, then sell them on a Saturday morning, along with refreshments. Usually make s afair amount.

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