Almost every cheerleading squad will have to put on a fundraiser to cover some of the costs of team maintenance or special events, such as camps or competitions trips. Typically, all fundraisers will eventually raise enough money to cover the basics, but often the team ends up wondering if it was all worth the time and effort.

However, the following two tips will help turn your squad into fundraising professionals.

1. Create a good reputation in the community

You should begin fundraising even before you begin fundraising. When you fundraise once or twice a year and the community does not otherwise hear from you, chances are nobody will rush to give you their hard-earned money. Instead, look at establishing a positive public reputation during the year as an integral part of the actual fundraising efforts.

Organize a food drive in your school or community. Show up at local soup kitchen to help every now and then. Hold a free (donations welcome) cheerleading performance at the local park to help out the homeless or an animal shelter.

2. Be creative and avoid competition with other groups

Setting up your fundraising booth next to the Girl Scouts selling cookies is definitely not the greatest money-making idea. Yet, so many cheerleading squads do just that (although not quite as obviously). Research how other groups and sports teams are raising money in the community. Don’t be afraid to openly communicate with them about it. After all, it is in everybody’s best interest to minimize overlapping and overwhelming the community with fundraising requests.

Do not settle for the traditional ways to raise money. Be innovative and include all team members in brainstorming and planning.