FUNDRAISING – Tried and tested

Quiz night

‘This year one of our committee members suggested we hold our first ever quiz night. As it was something new we were concerned it wouldn’t be well supported, but we combatted this by sending out letters in book bags, posting on our Facebook page and advertising in the school newsletter. After reading about another school’s quiz night success in the autumn issue of PTA+ Magazine, we were inspired to try something a bit different for the refreshments. We decided to serve pizza (bought from Asda), as it’s cheap, quick and easy. We included this in the £5 ticket price for adults, with children attending for free. To increase profits, we bought a TEN so we could run

a bar, plus a lottery licence so we could sell raffle tickets. The night was a great success, with more than 60 people

attending. Our quizmaster Nick wrote all the questions himself. There were six rounds, including “remembering 2017”, famous people, general knowledge and even a picture round. The winning team won bottles of fizz, biscuits and chocolates, along with the wonderful “Clever Clogs” trophy, which was made by our Vice-Chair Liz. Our outgoings were around £180, and we raised almost £500.’ Diana Kay, Chair, Friends of Dean Gibson Primary School, Kendal, Cumbria (165 pupils)

Christmas tree sales

‘We were approached by the company Trees for Christmas, which offers a Christmas tree-buying initiative to schools. We ran it for the first time in 2016. We began organising last year’s event in September as the orders had to be in quite early. We started promoting to parents in October through leaflets and order forms in book bags, posts on the PTA and local community Facebook pages and posters in local businesses. The trees had to be pre-ordered to ensure we only purchased the stock we needed. The Christmas

Wine tasting and auction of promises

‘In March we held our third bluffers’ wine tasting and auction of promises event. Combining wine tasting with an auction makes the event one of the highlights of our school calendar. The auction offered more than 30 lots donated by school families, teachers and local businesses. We charged £15 for a ticket, which included dinner. The evening began with the wine tasting with a difference.

A panel of four parents presented six wines to the audience. Much like the TV show Call My Bluff, for each wine one of the panel was telling the truth, while the others were telling tall tales. Teams had to note down whether they believed that the wine was, say, a flat Cava or a Malbec from a community vineyard in Argentina. The winning team won a case of all the wines. After dinner, we held the auction of promises, compered

by two budding amateur auctioneer parents. Promises included museum tickets, the chance for a pupil to choose a learning topic for the day, a Zumba party, professional decluttering, a violin-making workshop, a weekend in Denmark, an evening’s babysitting, and much more. All the lots went for well over their starting price. People who were unable to attend were able to bid online. We raised more than £6,000 and we are already

looking forward to next year’s event.’ Clea Relly, Former Chair, Friends of the Free School, Haberdashers’ Aske’s Hatcham Temple Grove Free School, London (300 pupils)

trees were priced as follows, excluding VAT: l 3-4ft cost £16, sold for £20 l 5-6ft cost £22, sold for £35 l 6-6'6ft tree cost £29, sold for £40 l 6'6-8ft cost £37.50, sold for £50 We promoted the event to the wider

community, but the majority of orders came from the school. Trees were delivered to my house to be picked up, and buyers were offered a choice of two time slots over two weekends, which they specified when placing the order. The feedback has been amazing. People felt the trees were beautiful shapes and didn’t drop at all. For anyone thinking of holding a similar fundraiser, it’s important to price the trees correctly and also to start early! It can be tricky to begin with as people can be wary of the quality of the trees, but once it’s established as a fundraiser it’s well worth it. We raised about £350,

and this year we’ll be increasing our prices, as the trees will still

be very good value at just £5 more.’ Lily Cook, Co-Chair, St Mary’s School, Chiddingfold, Surrey

(220 pupils)

36 AUTUMN 2018


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