5 valuable skills fundraising teaches kids

moneyWhen the subject of organizing a fundraiser comes up, the discussion revolves around the type and method. But, another important aspect is the positive effect participating in a fundraiser has on the children who take part.

Fundraising activities, whether it’s for school or another worthy cause, teach kids valuable lessons that serve them not only in their adult work lives but their personal lives as well.

Here are five essential skills children learn when they actively participate in a fundraiser.

  1. Communication Skills

The fundraising experts at ABC Fundraising point out that participation in any type of fundraiser builds communication skills. Children learn to communicate effectively; speak to others in a friendly and clear manner; and develop reasoning skills as they ask for donations or sell items.

  1. Goal Setting

Meeting deadlines and completing tasks within a specific timeframe is part of every adult’s life. Children engaged in fundraising activities learn the importance of reaching goals and get a hands-on experience of what it means to meet a deadline.

Teachers and parents can encourage specific goals as children fundraise. Reachable goals — such as staying positive, competing in a friendly manner and cooperating with a team — all build essential life skills.

  1. Business Acumen

What began in 1917 with a small group of mothers and daughters making sugar cookies in the kitchen is now an annual fundraising event for the Girl Scouts. The Girl Scout Cookie program is the first taste of entrepreneurship most girls experience.

Fundraising efforts, such as the Girl Scout Cookies program and others like it, give children the opportunity to see firsthand what it means to work hard and raise money. Business skills learned while fundraising include:

  • Attention to details: Detailed record keeping is critical for sales-oriented fundraising activities. Information collected typically involves recording the buyer’s name, the amount paid, items ordered and delivery address.
  • Customer service: Children who help sell fundraising items learn enough about their product to answer questions and solve problems that arise before and after the sale.
  • Get to the finish line: Children learn the importance of finishing their fundraising effort by delivering ordered items to buyers quickly and correctly.
  • Handle money: Kids get hands-on experience with finances. They learn how to make sure money they collect is safe, tracked and accounted for.
  1. Team Building

When children participate in a fundraiser for school, they become part of a team. They learn to pull for one another as they work side by side.

Fundraisers bring children together in a way not many other activities can. They meet and work with kids they may not have gotten to know otherwise. There’s nothing like the sense of camaraderie that comes from working toward a common goal.

  1. The Importance of Giving

A landmark study published by Bentley and Nissan in 1996 found that children who are exposed to situations where helping others is the goal, in turn, become giving adults. Fundraising activities teach children to think outside themselves and work for the benefit of others.

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