Going on a mission trip, whether it’s across the world or even just a few states away is a wonderful opportunity to help fill people’s practical needs, to share the hope of the gospel, and to make new friends and connections. However, sometimes the staggering amount of money it takes to go on a mission trip stops people from going altogether. GiveSendGo wants to offer anyone considering or dedicated to going on a mission trip some tips and suggestions for how to raise money for missions so you can shine brightly and really make a difference in this world!

Many of these tips and suggestions provide opportunities to get your church family and community involved in your fundraising endeavors as well! 

1. Create a GiveSendGo Campaign

We have a lot of families, groups, and individuals raising funds for their mission trips on GiveSendGo. In fact, it’s one of our most used categories! We encourage anyone looking to raise funds for their mission trip to use GiveSendGo as a tool to make your journey easier. 

Just like with any other campaign, it’s important to tell your story. Be sure to share your heart and why you (and/or) your group feels it’s important to go on this trip. People want to hear what kind of work you will be doing during your trip whether that’s building a house, serving in inner city missions, helping with disaster relief, etc. Missions could be a variety of things, so it’s important to communicate those details about what you will be doing, other ways aside from donating that people could be helping, what they could also be praying for, and why it’s important for you to go and help serve and/or evangelize in that area. 

Once you’ve shared your story, share your campaign as much as you can with your family, friends, social media community, church family, co-workers, and your local community. Share it on your social media sites, send the campaign url through email to relatives and co-workers, and text the campaign url to your closest friends and family. The best way to raise funds for your mission trip is to spread awareness and get as many people involved as you can, so don’t be shy with that share button. You can’t share it too much and you might even be surprised by the amount of people who want to help support you and your group in this calling.
2. “Pick a Number” Board or Envelope Fundraising

These two fundraising methods are roughly the same thing or are at least very similar. It can also be called a “Wall of Money”. Either way, the concept is that you make a board with various amounts or numbers ranging from 1-50, 1-100, 1-150, or whatever amount you feel is appropriate. Typically those amounts are written on envelopes or slips of paper and attached to panels on a cardboard display board.

Then, people can choose a number or amount and donate that amount. Once an amount has been given, you can cross that number out on the slip of paper or envelope but leave the number on the board, so you can keep track of what amounts are left. It will also lead more people to want to donate those other available amounts to complete your goal. This method also ensures everyone gets an opportunity to donate no matter what their budget is. The benefit of using envelopes is that people can place their cash or check straight into the envelope labeled with the amount they’re donating. 

The best part about this method is that you can use it more than just once and it can be incorporated into any event. If you’re already hosting a fundraising event (maybe using one of ideas listed below) use this money board as a fun way to have people donate to your trip. You could also set it up and leave it every Sunday at your church, so people can decide when it’s best for them to donate. 
3. Trivia Night 

Trivia nights are a huge hit and garner a lot of attendees! It’s also an event that people of every age can participate in. You can charge a set price per group or table, charge per person and put people together at random, or use both methods! The benefit of charging per table or group is that if people want to play with their friends or family they can all chip in the donation price. 

The best part about trivia nights is that you have free reign with the topics you’ll quiz people over! You can have a trivia night with various categories such as movies, nature or landmarks, the town you’re hosting in, history, etc. Or you can get more specific and make your trivia night all about one topic such as Star Wars and each trivia category has something to do with Star Wars. Another option is to theme the trivia night based on the location of your mission trip. Decorate the room like that country or place and then use one of the categories to quiz them over that location. The sky’s the limit, so just have fun and be really creative! 

Because trivia nights can be tailored to your needs, you can implement other fundraising methods or activities into the night. For instance, during intermission you can host a silent auction or play some mini games where people can donate a set amount to play. You can also set up the envelope money board mentioned earlier for people to place donations in as they’re walking around. 

4. Sell T-Shirts, Bracelets, and/or Stickers

Who doesn’t love a good t-shirt? They’re fun to collect and serve as a great reminder of fond memories.

Making and selling a creative t-shirt design is a great way to raise money for your mission trip. Not only do you get to create something unique and personal to you and your trip, but people will wear them more than once, which will only increase the awareness of your trip. A way to take advantage of this is to encourage your supporters to post a picture of themselves on social media with your t-shirt! If you have a hashtag you’re using to share about your trip, you can even use that on the t-shirt and encourage others to share that same hashtag when they post with your shirt.

The same goes for rubber bracelets! They’re also cheaper, so if someone can’t afford a t-shirt or knows they won’t wear it, they can just buy a bracelet. Also, designing a fun sticker for computers, cars, or even water bottles are becoming more and more popular. They’re really easy to create and buy in bulk! Even though they're just stickers, you can charge higher prices like $15 per sticker (or for a pack of stickers). People are really willing to donate if they know it’s going to support something or someone they care about.  

5. Offer a Service

Offering a service, whether it’s just you as an individual or as a whole group going on missions, is extremely effective. Almost everyone has some sort of project around their house or yard they need accomplished and many of those projects are ones that require helping hands. You can reach out as a group or individual to your community, or even to your church family, to see if there’s anyone who needs help with an inside or outside project they would be willing to pay you for to support your mission trip. You’re likely to rack up a lot of projects! 

A few projects you may be able to help out with could be babysitting, lawn mowing, raking leaves, cleaning houses, organizing, building, planting flowers, removing tree roots, cleaning gutters, painting, and many more. Whatever the project is, it’s a great way to not only serve your community, but it’s also giving others the opportunity to serve you through your service by donating for your work. 

6. LemonAid Stand

A lemonade stand (or a LemonAid stand if you want to be punny) is another fun way for a group or a few people to work together to raise money for a mission trip. Making homemade lemonade is easy and fairly affordable. It’s also something simple you can incorporate with other fundraising activities over the summer like a garage sale or auction. 

7. Parents Night Out

Host a parents night out at your church or among your friend group! For one night you can offer to watch kids for a set price, or whatever parents would normally pay a babysitter, while the parents go out and enjoy a kid-free night.

8. Ice Cream Social

Ice cream socials are a fun summer activity to raise money for your mission trip. You can typically buy several large buckets or tubs of various flavors of ice cream for a relatively cheap price. We also recommend you provide different toppings and maybe even some drizzles or sauces for people to choose from. Then, you can charge $5, or whatever you see fit, per cone or bowl and you’d be surprised how many people from the community you’ll attract (especially from families on a really hot day)!

We suggest you also talk to local stores or organizations to see if they would be willing to donate the ice cream to you in support of your trip. The worst they can say is no, so it doesn’t hurt to ask! 

9. Garage Sale 
This idea works the best in spring or summer. Invite your family, friends, church family, and community to donate items from their house they want to get rid of to your garage sale. Then, based on your schedule and deadline, you can sell items in your garage sale every weekend or even everyday for a week. Then, all the money raised from the garage sale can go directly towards your mission trip.

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