7th Grade Students Raise Funds and Awareness for Vermonters Facing Hunger
Students host a raffle to fundraise for their class trip and make a difference in their community. Bonus: the winner gets to redesign their teacher’s beard.
Every year, the 8th grade class at U-32 Middle & High School, Montpelier, VT, goes on a field trip to Washington D.C. To help minimize the cost of the trip, students are expected to fundraise starting when they’re in 7th grade. Many traditional fundraisers are offered throughout the school year, but this past spring one 7th grade TA group decided to do something a little extra.
Steve Sheeler, the Teacher Advisor of the group, explained that his group of nine 7th graders decided to do an additional fundraiser together as a TA that would help towards the ultimate goal of visiting D.C. the following year.
“We had many discussions about different ways to raise money,” says Steve, “but we ultimately landed on a raffle that would not only contribute towards our goals related to the D.C. trip, but also could contribute in a positive way towards our local community. With this in mind, we spent some time researching different non-profit organizations in the area where our fundraiser could make a difference.”
Students in the TA group sold raffle tickets, emphasizing that every $3 donated to the Vermont Foodbank could help provide 5 meals. At the end of the raffle the proceeds were divided in thirds: one third went to the raffle winner, one third to the Vermont Foodbank, and the final third to the student who sold the tickets towards their D.C. fund.
And there was an extra incentive for the student who sold the most tickets. “At the time, I had grown a pretty burly mid-winter Vermont beard, and rather than shave it all off at once, I allowed them to design my look for the final day before our February break,” explained Sheeler.
At the conclusion of the fundraiser, the group donated about $80 to the Foodbank, providing more than 130 meals to neighbors in need. The students enjoyed working with each other on the project, and shared that a highlight of the fundraiser was knowing how much food they were helping to provide with the money they raised. Sheeler hopes that this experience will promote more active and involved citizens. We asked the students why they chose to support Vermonters struggling with hunger, and one replied, “So we could help them out. Even if it is not a whole lot, we are still helping.”
Inspired to provide meals for kids, families, and older adults facing hunger? You can start a fundraiser of your own: https://www.vtfoodbank.org/give-time/start-a-fundraiser
• Read-a-thon: Collect a stack of books and get reading! Pick a time frame: a weekend, a week, a month. Ask friends and family to donate for each page or book that you read within your time frame. Log your progress and make sure to announce your reading totals to your donors when your read-a-thon ends. You can read on your own, or invite your class to join you in your fight against hunger
• Walk with Pets to Fight Hunger: Calling all animal lovers! Turn a chore into a statement. Get your friends together (and few grownups) and ask a neighbor or family member to donate for each pup that joins, or for how far you walk
• School/Classroom Virtual Food Drive: Cans are heavy to bring to school, so instead, have your classroom start a virtual food drive. Your entire classroom can help give food to neighbors facing hunger
• Snowman Building Competition: Once the snow flies, organize a snowman building competition. Select judges and ask each team to make a donation as their “entry fee.” Set up a refreshment stand with hot cocoa! Have fun in the snow while providing meals to neighbors facing hunger
• Chili Cook-Off: Recruit your community’s families for a delicious competition! Each family can cook up their own special stew, and make a donation to enter the contest. Tasters can vote with their dollars, using your page’s message board to call out their favorite family recipes. What a tasty way to share a meal with Vermonters facing hunger
• On the Road Again: Does it seem like your family is always on the road? Start a fundraising page, and ask to for support while you’re on your trip! $1 per mile can get you pretty far
• Tie Dye Shirts for Hunger: Turn a family art project into a lasting message. Ask friends and family to donate to your page, and offer to make them a shirt, too! Then the messy part – tie-dyeing! When it’s all done and dry, you’ll have a shirt to remember the fun and the difference you made in the lives of Vermonters facing hunger
• Bake Sale: An oldie but a goodie. Treat everyone to goodies while feeling good! Instead of setting up a table, set up a page online with a few different sweets, and send them out to friends and family. Then you can hand deliver brownies, cookies or cupcakes when the fundraiser ends. Yum!
• Tag Sale to Benefit Neighbors in Need: If you have stuff you’ve forgotten about or simply don’t use, set up a page and put out a sign! Have those perusing your junk/treasures to make a donation to your page instead of collecting cash
• Cocktails for Change: Throw a party and have your guests contribute to the Vermont Foodbank before the celebration
• Sports for Good: Take a typical viewing party to the next level, and have everyone in attendance donate money for every field goal, dunk, goalie save or slapshot