Prayer and planning are key. The sooner you can get organized and put together events, trips, camps, the sooner you can prepare for them. The sooner you get prepared, the sooner you can begin raising support for those activities. I am here to draw from my experiences and share them with you regarding fundraising.

PRAYER – It’s amazing how much support you can receive from prayer alone. In fact, I would say this is the single most important aspect of planning and preparing there is. Pray for God’s calling on each of your students, pray for understanding from their parents, and pray for God to intervene in a mighty way.

When I was in high school, the church I attended would bring the youth, who desired to go on a mission trip, up to the front of the congregation and pray for each of them. It was a commissioning of sorts for the youth to see that there was a whole church who supported them through prayer. That was just the beginning. Each member of the church committed to praying for the students throughout the year as they began to raise monetary funds for their trips. The Sunday before camp, or a mission trip, the youth who were going were brought back up in front of the congregation and commissioned out through prayer and the laying of hands.

PLANNING – Without prayer you cannot plan. With prayer, all things are possible. The church I attended in high school had some set fundraisers each and every year that went into an account for the youth who felt called to participate in a mission trip or a summer camp. One of these fundraisers consisted of delivering pies around Thanksgiving. People had a choice of pumpkin and/or apple. They would pre-order their pies ahead of time and get them delivered just before the holidays. During the Christmas season, the youth group would participate in a drop and shop event at the church. The church would be opened to parents who wanted to go Christmas shopping for their children, without their children. There would be a block of time available and there was a minimum donation request amount per child. For the children who were at the church, there were games, crafts, and stories centered around the real meaning of Christmas. Each youth who participated received a portion of the donations to be used towards camp or a mission trip. In spring, the church put on a silent auction. There were items that were donated and people bid on them. Some of the “items” were offers to do yard work, cleaning, and so on. I remember that my auction item was hauling things to the dump since I had a truck. We had a few businesses donate some electronics as well.

Those set fundraisers were all very popular within my church. Thankfully we had an active parent base and what this did was rally the church and community around us, so that the youth who participated ended up going on some awesome spirit-filled adventures.

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