Fundraising Ideas for Summer Camp That Drive Support

For children and adults alike, camp is an eye-opening experience for individuals to learn about themselves and to make meaningful and lasting relationships. Most importantly, summer camp is a whole lot of fun. The first step is deciding the best summer camp for you. Whether that is a surf camp, a science camp, an outdoor adventure or a cultural enrichment camp, there are many options. The second step is funding your adventure—and here are fundraising ideas for summer camp to help you do just that.

Start a summer camp fundraiser

kids at summer camp with bonfire

Crowdfunding for summer camp

Crowdfunding is an ideal platform for drumming up support from friends, family, social network, and beyond. Create your fundraiser with a compelling fundraiser story about what you hope to gain from summer camp, along with plenty of good photos and a video to further illustrate your ambition and the enriching experiences you hope to gain. Then make sure to share it via social media and email and encourage your connections to do the same.

Note: If you’re between 13 and 17 years old, make sure to get your parent or guardian’s permission to start a GoFundMe; if you’re 12 or younger, ask your parent or guardian to start the fundraiser for you.

Six summer camp fundraising ideas

man with cameras

1. Show someone the ropes

If you are attending a camp that is designed to help you learn or perfect a skill set, you can offer to teach donors afterward. For instance, those planning on attending a photography camp can offer various promotions such as lessons in film photography or a crash course in Photoshop to potential donors in return for helping fund your summer camp experience. In your online fundraiser, simply include what promotions you plan on offering upon your return. Individuals can indicate which promotion they are interested in when they donate.

girl donating hair

2. Wigging out

One way to motivate people to donate to your fundraiser is to inspire them by giving back yourself. You can pledge to grow your hair out, have it cut and donate it to be made into a wig for cancer patients undergoing chemotherapy. If you lead by example by showcasing your compassion, others are likely to follow in your footsteps by donating to your fundraiser.

community clean up group

3. Community cleanup

Volunteer to clean up a local park, beach, river, or other natural area and reach out to people in your community to sponsor you in the form of a donation to your fundraiser. Ask donors to give an allotted amount for each pound of trash you clean up. This will not only help you bring in funds but also help to maintain the natural beauty of your neighborhood. People will likely jump at the opportunity to both help you and their community.

vegetables at grocery store

4. Bag it

Head to your favorite local grocery store and ask if you can donate your time to help bag groceries in return for a donation to your fundraiser. You can talk to the customers about your summer camp goals and provide them with a flyer containing a link to your fundraiser to raise awareness and expand potential donor reach. Ask the store owner if you can also post the flyer at the entrance so shoppers know you are bagging groceries in exchange for fundraiser support.

5. Get crafty

Create something that embodies your dream to go to summer camp, such as a dream catcher. Rally some of your friends together and ask them to help you craft a bundle of dream catchers to sell to potential donors. Gather some simple materials like colored string, feathers, beads, and wire and get those creative juices flowing. You can showcase photos of the dream catchers on your fundraiser page so donors can indicate which one they want. You may consider asking donors to add a few dollars to their donation to cover shipping costs.

kids at summer camp

6. Parents night out

Offer to help parents in your community get the date night they deserve. Whether they need babysitting or pet sitting, you can offer your services on Friday and Saturday nights so that they get some necessary time off to have some fun. This is a promotion you can offer every weekend until you go camping, and you may even get some repeat clients.

Three summer camp fundraiser examples

girl on gymnastics beam

1. Mariah’s gymnastics summer camp

Part of a proud Air Force family, Vanessa is the mother of four children. Her daughter Mariah’s passion is gymnastics, and she’s been surpassing her coach’s expectations with her drive and dedication. Vanessa wanted to fulfill her daughter’s dream of going to gymnastics camp, but money is tight with a single military income. That’s when she turned to GoFundMe, sharing her daughter’s story. She posted great photos of Mariah on the balance beam and performing her floor routine, which helped demonstrate her enthusiasm for her sport. Once her friends and family helped her reach her goal, Vanessa was able to share the good news with her daughter: She was going to gymnastics camp that summer.

young boy at summer camp

2. Addison’s summer camp experience

Addison is a happy, funny kid who loves performing with his school chorus and enjoying family dinners. His mother Kelli was thrilled to find a summer camp near their home that is fully accessible for kids like Addison who have disabilities. The only obstacle was the cost. Kelli started a GoFundMe, explaining how much a camp with swimming, canoeing, crafts, and campfire songs would mean to Addison. Friends and family pitched in, and Kelli was able to reach her goal of $650. In her last update, Kelli shared how Addison was “beyond happy” for his upcoming camp experience.

Get set for camp

Ready to create your own summer camp fundraiser? GoFundMe makes the setup process simple so you can have your fundraiser up and running within minutes. With no platform fee, more money goes toward making your summer camp dreams a reality. Start your summer camp fundraiser.