Small churches can do big things.
They’re the heart of the community, serving their parishioners throughout their lives and sharing the word of God and the Gospel with the world.
The work, however, takes resources, and many parishes must look for new church fundraising ideas to help them expand their ministry work.
Church Fundraising Ideas to Grow Your Congregation and Ministry
The right approach for your church depends on the goals you hope to achieve.
Expanding the services you offer to your community or providing for mundane repairs and improvements can often be managed by creative community outreach. On the other hand, more ambitious projects may need a greater source of capital.
Some possibilities you could consider include:
1. Offering Babysitting Nights
Childcare is prohibitively expensive for many, leaving many parents putting off personal time, important events, or even basic errands for want of anyone to look after their children.
This can be an opportunity to offer a much needed service to your community while also raising some funds. Ask nursery workers or other members with childcare experience to donate a few hours of their time and donate to the church in exchange.
2. Organizing Community Classes
If you go through the members of your congregation, you’ll find that between them they possess a wide range of skills. So why not invite them to share some of their skills with the community?
Asking members to volunteer their time to teach basic classes at the church can be a great way to bring people together while raising donations.
Classes can be on anything from arts and crafts to practical life skills. The only limit is your ability to encourage your parishioners to share their knowledge.
3. Hosting a Church Cook-Off
Church cook-outs and potlucks are nothing new, but what you can do is add some friendly competition to make them more interesting.
Organize a competitive cook-off, offering simple prizes. Contestants are asked for a donation as an entry fee, and spectators can purchase tickets to sample the entrees.
Since you can theme the event in any way you like, you can hold multiple cook-offs throughout the year. A barbecue cook-off in the summer, chili in the winter, and other offerings in between. It’s a great way to bring people together and raise some money that isn’t just another potluck.
4. Church Extension Funds
Some goals require greater funding than you can reasonably ask of your congregation. The weekly offering just won’t cover things like extensive renovations or major additions.
This usually means seeking out a loan. You could go to a bank of course, but some options may be better suited to your needs.
Church extension funds are lenders that work exclusively with churches. Many of them have pastors or other ministry leaders on staff, so they understand the unique challenges that a small church faces and are often more willing to work with your unique needs.
There are many of these extension funds from a range of backgrounds and with different funding levels, giving you options to find the right fit for your church.
5. Payday Loans
This is the most unconventional option on the list, but you shouldn’t rule it out.
Should an emergency arise, you might not always have the time to organize a fundraiser or go through an extension fund to get the funds you need. This is where personal payday loans hold the advantage.
That quick influx of cash can give you the breathing room your church needs, and many lenders offer flexible terms, which can make repayment easier.
Should your church find itself in a difficult position, it couldn’t hurt to at least learn more about these loan options.
Balancing the Needs of the Church and Its Congregation
Small churches often find themselves seeking a balance between the demand for services and the reluctance to beseech their parishioner for more contributions. It’s an unenviable position, but one that is part of the work.
However, by coming up with church fundraising ideas that members will want to participate in, you can prevent donor fatigue and even provide additional services that people want while raising funds.