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Top 6 Ridiculous and Unusual Fundraising Ideas

When it comes to raising funds for your organization, shaking things up and breaking from the norm can pay off in a big way. Even though unusual fundraiser ideas can sound a bit zany at first, they can actually draw more attention to your fundraising event and help make your organization the talk of the town.

Read on as we dive into six common yet ridiculous fundraising ideas and how you can use them to meet your fundraising goals.

1. Laundry Detergent Fundraisers

laundry detergent fundraiser

Topping the list of weird fundraising ideas is the laundry detergent fundraiser. It works similarly to other sales fundraisers in that you purchase a certain amount of laundry detergent in bulk from a participating company and sell it at a profit.

When it comes to benefits, a laundry detergent fundraiser:

  • Provides useful household items to members of your community
  • Reaps a relatively high profit margin
  • Has universal appeal and high demand
  • Comes with easy logistics, as you won’t have to worry about product shelf life

Of course, you should always think about potential cons, too. For a laundry detergent fundraiser, consider:

  • Stock is often heavy, bulky, and hard to transport
  • Laundry detergent may not have the same appeal as handmade or baked goods
  • Many people already have brands of detergent they’re loyal to
Overall, a laundry detergent fundraiser is a solid unusual fundraising idea that might be worth testing. 

2. Mattress and Bed Sheet Fundraisers

Looking for other crazy fundraising ideas? How about a mattress or bed sheet fundraiser? Here are a few benefits that come to mind:

  • It’ll definitely catch people’s attention since they’re atypical items to sell
  • Bed sheets and mattresses fill an important need for many community members
  • You’ll enjoy a large profit margin, especially with mattresses

However, like detergent, mattresses are cumbersome to handle. Bed sheets, on the other hand, are portable and easy to store. You’ll see a smaller profit margin, but it might be worth the trade-off.

3. Seasoning Fundraisers

seasoning fundraiser

While unusual, a seasoning fundraiser is a great option as seasonings are easy to preserve and transport.

However, you do have to worry about other concerns that food-related fundraisers (such as cookie dough, candy, pizza, or subs) typically run into, including:

  • Cross-contamination
  • Food allergens
  • Following food handling safety guidelines

Some folks can’t participate in food-based fundraisers for these reasons, so you may be cutting yourself off from potential sales with this option.

4. Car Mat Fundraisers

Selling customized car floor mats is a great way to not only raise money but also advertise your cause to others through branding for your organization.

You will have some hurdles to overcome, though. Namely: 

  • Customized car mats can be quite pricey
  • If your logo changes, the mat won’t be as effective
  • Not everyone owns a car 

However, many people love displaying their support for a cause or organization with a unique, customized item. Depending on your target audience, this might make the high initial cost worth your time.

5. Charity Dips

charity dip polar plunge fundraiser

Plunging into ice-cold water may sound like a ridiculous fundraising idea, but it’s actually more common than you think. In fact, charity dips and polar plunges are a popular and fun way to raise money for various causes and organizations. 

The money comes from selling tickets to participate in the event, and the fun comes from the adrenaline rush participants feel when they dive into shockingly cold water. 

If you’re considering organizing a charity dip, keep these safety tips in mind:

  • Be prepared to stave off cold temperatures with blankets, hot drinks, and dry-off areas
  • Have medical staff on hand just in case

Though this can be an effective way of gaining traction and attention, it might ultimately be more hassle than it’s worth due to the intensive safety preparation needed.

6. Gift Card Fundraisers

grocery shopping while gift card fundraising

If you’re looking for an unconventional fundraising idea that’s low-effort yet high-reward, consider a gift card fundraising program. You can earn money for your cause or organization through everyday expenses, like groceries or gas. 

RaiseRight is the leader in gift card fundraising, and we’re here to teach you how it works

Essentially, gift card fundraisers allow you to earn money for your cause by having participants purchase gift cards for brands they already know and love

This means you can easily raise funds without setting up an event, recruiting volunteers, or purchasing inventory up-front. And, by offering gift cards to shop for everyday items that your participants would buy anyway, you make your fundraiser accessible to everyone.

Hit Your Fundraising Goals With RaiseRight

From selling mattresses and sheets to jumping into freezing cold water, there’s no shortage of interesting ways to generate revenue for your fundraiser. But if you’re looking for a unique fundraising idea that’s also incredibly effective all year long, add gift card fundraising to your arsenal.

Ready to start earning?

Here are some next steps to get the ball rolling:

  1. Learn more about how gift card fundraising works.
  2. Download the Gift Card Fundraising Playbook and share it with others in your organization.
  3. Start a free program by completing a short, online enrollment form.  

If your organization is already earning with RaiseRight, you just need your enrollment code to create an account and begin fundraising right away.