How to Plan a School Barbecue Fundraiser

How to Plan a School Barbecue Fundraiser

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Inexpensive meals such as spaghetti dinner fundraisers and barbecues are a great way to get your school’s families together, providing them the opportunity to get out of the house without having to spend a lot of money, and of course, letting you raise funds with an offering that everyone will love!

Here is a complete list of everything you will need to do to to plan your next barbecue fund raiser. Depending on your time frame, the number of volunteers involved, and the number of people that you think will attend the barbeque, you may need to make some modifications – this as a general guideline that has worked for other schools in planning their fundraising event.

Two-Three Months Before

* Set a date and location.
* Create a menu and price food items; determine the cost per meal and what you will
charge.
* Create a list of community business who might be interested in sponsoring the barbecue.
* Write up and send out sponsorship letter.
* Make a budget of how much will come from appropriated funds and how much you expect
to collect from sponsors.
* Create advertisements and press releases for any of the following that you will use:
newspapers, television, radio, social media, school website, local businesses.

Six Weeks to One Month Before
* Follow up on potential sponsors. Call or visit the businesses and answer questions that
they might have.
* Find volunteers to help with setting up, preparing food, serving food and cleaning up.
* Start advertising campaign.
* Create signs to put out the day of the barbecue. Consider a large sign to put outside of
the event location and paper signs to put on street posts.

Two-Three Weeks Before

* Buy all paper products including table cloths, plates, cups, silverware and napkins.
* Buy non-perishable food items.
* Hold a short meeting with volunteers and explain their roles to them. Assign shifts, if
necessary.

One Week Before
* Buy perishable food items.
* Contact volunteers to remind them of their shifts. Find back up volunteers just in case
they are needed.

Day Before
* All volunteer groups should finish up their preparations, set up tables, prepare the foods
that can be made in advance.
* Get a cash box and plenty of cash to make change. Don’t forget a calculator and paper to
track attendance

Day of the Barbecue

* Arrive early.
* Put out signs to advertise the barbecue.
* Finish preparing food and have them set out just as the doors open.
* Make sure all volunteers arrive. Contact back up volunteers if needed.
* Clean up afterwards.
* Deposit money in the bank.

Day After
* Return any borrowed or rented items.
* Send thank-yous to sponsors.
* Prepare and send out a report on the fund raiser, if necessary.

Additional Fund Raising Opportunities at the Barbeque
To raise additional funds and add to the atmosphere of your barbeque you might consider having some extra activities that will bring in more funds for your school. To simplify the meal, you might omit dessert but then have a stand serving dessert a la carte for those who want them. What about having a silent auction or bake sale? You might as well take advantage of already having people present and earn a little extra money. Finally you could have a few parents organize face painting or children’s games to give the kids something to do while adults eat and chat.

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