Tuesday, May 21, 2024
Tuesday, May 21, 2024
HomeAll The NewsSTUDENT MINISTRY: Fundraising for Student Ministry

STUDENT MINISTRY: Fundraising for Student Ministry

It’s funny. As much fundraising as I have done over the years in student ministry, I don’t remember covering the topic in Bible college or seminary. I can’t speak for those that focused their education solely on student ministry. I only took a handful of classes for youth ministry because my emphasis was on pastoral ministry. However, my guess is that it wasn’t discussed that much.

Many small to mid-sized churches don’t have large budgets for student ministry, so that means fundraising is where we gain the means to see our students attend camps, travel on mission trips and attend events like the SOAR conference. So, how do we approach these opportunities? We need to begin with the right mindset. Before we have a brainstorming session to narrow down the best ideas, we need to formulate our philosophy for fundraising. What does that look like? Here are some suggestions:

• Fundraising is an opportunity to share vision with your congregation. It is said that people support vision over organizations. I agree. Let your people know what you hope to see happen in the lives of your students and how their contributions can help bring that about.

• Fundraising is an opportunity for your congregation to join the work of your student ministry. Some of your adults will never work a lock-in or go with your group to float the river. However, fundraising gives everyone in your church the chance to make an investment in the students of the church. Don’t view your fundraising as only a money-making endeavor. See it as a way to enlarge your team.

• Fundraising is an opportunity for your students to serve your congregation. As the young people of your church make food for a meal, serve during an event or work clean-up, they can learn that service is at the heartbeat of what they are doing. Chris Vines, of Garrett Memorial Baptist Church in Hope and co-host of our podcast, will often even provide a night of car washing for his church just as a thank you. He will refuse donations at that point. Serving as a part of fundraising or as a thank you for congregational support helps your young people learn what the Christian life is all about.

• Fundraising is an opportunity for your students to connect with your community. I don’t mean you should go door-knocking and asking for funds. I would encourage you to find things where your group can work in the community. At Temple Baptist Church in Rogers, we worked Razorback concessions for years. There are cleaning opportunities, concession stands or parking jobs that provide these types of opportunities. Get creative.

Fundraising can be tricky, but with the right mindset, it is more than just a money-making endeavor. It can be an opportunity to encourage the church and grow the kingdom.

Join the conversation at Facebook.com/groups/StudentMinistryMattersCommunity and share some of your favorite fundraising ideas.