PBS Kids GO! It's My Life
Volunteering: Fundraising

Charities and non-profit groups that aim to improve our world need person-power, sure. But they also need something else that can be harder to come by: money! Raising funds for an organization you believe in can be just as fun and rewarding as hands-on work.

Brayden, 11, writes: "I volunteer at my church. We put on plays for the public and we raise money for the homeless."

Lindsay, 10, says: "Sometimes I do yardwork and things for neighbors and ask them for a donation so I can send
money to UNICEF."

Here are a few ideas for charity fundraising:

Garage and rummage sales
Organize a sale of unwanted items in your family, neighborhood, place of worship, or school. Instead of keeping the money you make, give it to a worthy cause.

Bake sales and lemonade stands
Bake up your best breads or sugary treats, mix up some yummy lemonade, and let people know that all the money goes to a specific charity.

Holiday gift bazaars
Do you crochet? Make jewelry? Specialize in some other type of arts and crafts? Put that together with other products from friends and family, and you can have a holiday gift event at your place of worship, school, or community center. Most people like it when their gift-buying money goes to a charity, because that's like giving two gifts at once! It's also a nice idea to do your own shopping from charity groups, or buy your holiday cards from Web sites that send part of their profits to a good cause.

Special events
If you're an organizer at heart, this one's for you! Put on a concert or dance, have a talent show, create a walk-a-thon, or even get sponsors for a wacky "publicity stunt" (like seeing how long you and your friends can keep your hands on a tree or flagpole). Make sure to call your local paper to help publicize your event. You could take out a small ad, or a reporter might even be inspired to write an article to get the word out!

Seek business donations
Many companies like to donate money to charities. If you're raising money for a certain organization, try calling or visiting the businesses in your neighborhood and telling them all about it. Spread the word through your parents, neighbors, and friends' parents, too. A business might decide that your cause is worth a donation, or they might even sponsor an event. Don't be too shy to ask!

Other kinds of donations
Remember, money isn't the only thing we can donate in order to help others! Organize a drive or event, or just ask people you know, to collect canned or boxed food, clean clothing, shoes, and even eyeglasses.

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