Fun Run Incentives to Boost Your Fundraising

Colorful Fun Run Incentives To Boost Your Fundraising and Participation

One of the biggest questions we hear is  – “Do you really need to offer incentives for fundraising participation?”  The resounding answer is YES!  Offering prizes for meeting fundraising goals is a surefire way to improve your results.

We ran across a great article on PTO Today that asked PTO’s that same question – Do you really need to offer incentives for fundraising?  What they found is that organizations that did, typically raised a lot more money.  You can read the full article here.

A color powder run is just bursting with fun and your fundraising prizes and incentives should do the same.  There is a rainbow of possibilities for you to offer as rewards that will inspire your fundraising and add more personality to your event.

Setting fundraising goals and offering incentives can also teach kids about goal-setting and teamwork.

You may want to reward your participants for:

  • Getting their first donation
  • Reaching fundraising milestones – $50, $100, $200 for example
  • Most funds raised – by individuals, class, or team
  • Most class or group participation

Many experts say that a good fundraiser should focus on participation.  Afterall, the more students that participate the more money you will raise.  Offering prizes goes a long way towards boosting participation.  While you may want a few big prizes for your biggest fundraisers, focusing on the lower level prizes may help you get as many people to participate as possible.  Look at it this way if you have 100 kids and they each raise $50 you will earn $5000.  But if you have only 20 of those kids participate they would each have to raise $250 to reach $5000.  So, consider offering lots of prizes for small goals and starting with a simple inexpensive prize for each child who raises their first $5 and then keep rewarding them as the donations increase.

Creating Excitement With Incentives

There really is no end to what you can offer as prizes and incentives for fundraising and the vast majority of them are low to no cost.  The key is to research items that your students will like and constantly remind them and reward them.  Some schools interviewed in the PTO Today article noted that they saw an increase in fundraising when they were handing out prizes every day as opposed to waiting for the end of the fundraiser to give everyone their prizes.  When kids see other kids winning prizes, they want to also so it motivates them to work on their fundraising.  You may want to have PTO volunteers take a few minutes to hand out prizes each day in home room.  Or if you don’t want to disrupt class time, have a prize station in the cafeteria.

Colorful Fun Run Prize Ideas:

With a color powder run run there is no end to packages you can put together – especially with a rainbow theme.  Prizes can range from individual items to classroom activities to crazy principal stunts.

Here are a few suggestions:

Fun Run Incentives

Individual Prizes:

  • Rainbow Candy – think skittles, gummies, laffy taffy, sour worms, rainbow twizzlers
  • TemporaryTattoos
  • Inspirational Bracelets
  • Packages of colorful erasers, pencils and markers
  • Keychains, stuffed animals, toys in the latest trend – is it unicorns, llamas, dinosaurs?
  • Sunglasses
  • Color Powder Packets – This is our number one item for a colorful fun run. Kids love having the color powder packets to throw on each other at the beginning or end of the race.
  • Tutus and Rainbow Socks – fun accessories that people love to wear for color powder runs
  • Drawstring bags or backpacks – there are many different types of bags you can order. ColorBlaze offers them in a variety of bright colors to go along with the rainbow theme.

non profit fundraising ideas


These may not be the colors of the rainbow but if you focus on places that kids like to frequent and you ask those businesses to donate a gift card, you have zero cost associated with your prize and your local business get plenty of free advertising

  • Pottery Painting Place Passes
  • Bowling – A Cosmic Bowling Party
  • Bounce/Trampoline House Passes
  • Ice Rink Passes
  • Yogurt Or Ice Cream Parlours – a free sundae
  • Pizza Restaurants – Free Pizza
  • Arcades – Tokens for free games
  • Movie Theatres – Free movie passes

Classroom Activites

Offer an incentive to the class that raises the most money or has the most participation.

  • Wear Pajamas to school for a day
  • Extra Recess
  • Pizza Parties for classes that raise the most or a catered lunch from a local favorite. Many times restaurants will donate all or a portion in exchange for advertising.
  • School swag – hats, shirts, bumper stickers, etc with the school logo
  • Free Homework Pass

Principal Prizes

Kids love it when the principal gets involved in school activities.  Schools that have a principal that is actively involved in the fundraising campaign tend to see more participation and more dollars raised. If your principal is a good sport here are a few ideas to involving your principal in your fundraising prizes.

  • Principal for a day
  • Principal dyes hair school colors for a day
  • Tape the principal to the wall with rainbow duct tape
  • Dunk the principal, Slime, Silly String, Color Powder the principal

The key is always to raise as much as possible.  So consider setting attainable goals and offering lots of prizes along the way  that will help you get the participation you need to make your goals and find  your pot of gold at the end of the rainbow!