Boy Scout Fundraising
The Girl Scouts are well known for their cookie sales. Boy Scout troops, packs, and crews have no national fundraising item. Each BSA unit makes their own fundraising decisions. Many councils participate in popcorn sales, but the strong competition in many areas causes troops to look for alternative ways to raise funds. I've seen troops selling many different items and services including poinsettas, carwashes, flags, and even mulch.
To help with your efforts, here are some Boy Scout fundraising ideas you might consider. While you will find hundreds of different Boy Scout and Cub Scout fundraising ideas on the internet, I'd like to take a moment to present a few of them here.
- Christmas Wreaths - There are many companies to choose to be your wreath supplier: Mickman Brothers, Sherwood Forest Farms, Evergreen Industries, and others.
- Snacks - Items that you can sell cover the entire spectrum from smoked meat sticks from Country Meats to nuts from Virginia Diner. One of the top Boy Scout fund raisers is selling chocolate candy bars. Consider selling the Original One Dollar Bar for your candy fundraiser. These are the largest one dollar fundraising chocolate candy bars available. They are packaged in patriotic wrappers that look like one dollar bills. Besides the size and great flavor, smaller groups will love the fact that they can purchase as little as one case of candy at a time.
- Camp Cards - In the past 5 years or so, this program has gotten very popular with AllAmerican Card Co being a big player.
- Flag Subscriptions - individual homes pay to have a US Flag put up and taken down in their yard by scouts on six or seven key holidays each year. Proceeds can be divided between selling the subscription and doing the actual flag work. A troop needs to invest in the flags and ensure there will be enough scouts available to raise and lower all the flags. This fundraiser allows both 'sellers' and 'workers' to earn by doing what they prefer.
- Bulbs - A more unique Scout fund raiser to consider is selling flower bulbs. Flower bulbs are great fundraising products that sell well and are easy to handle.
- Food Events - pancake breakfast, pork roast, corn feed, whatever local cuisine is expected. Picnics and 'feeds' allow an opportunity for communities to gather, have fun, and support Scouting.
- Tools and Gadgets - Interesting, or hard-to-find items can be sold by a unit. For example, the Twisted Dogs hotdog tool could be sold as an extra at your food-oriented fundraising event. Rope Cinch for folks that can't tie knots.
It's best to do a fundraiser that targets people outside your unit. A cake auction, for example, would most likely be attended only by Scouting families. So, the same families that would be paying the unit expenses are still paying them. Fundraising should be an opportunity for other community members to support Scouting if they want.
All scout fundraising events are supposed to be authorized by the Boy Scouts of America through the use of a Unit Money-Earning Aplication at this page.
When checking out new fund raising options, a lower up-front investment and a larger percentage of profit are two keys to success. It's also important to have a product that people need or want but don't often purchase for themselves.
If you have a fundraising product you'd like listed here, please Contact Me.
Jul 02, 2012 - Bert Guss
If you read the Checklist for Approval (in the link above), you are trying to earn money for individual scout use sometime in the future, for some undefined need, rather than for a current need for your current unit. That is not what fundraising is for.
Here is another page that states fundraising can not be credited to an individual for his expenses. This "individual scout bucks" that you mention can be money contributed by the scout and his family, but not from unit fundraising. Another discussion on the topic can be found here.
It's certainly a good idea for scouts and their parents to start putting aside funds for expensive future adventures as soon as possible. A Cub Scout could put aside a portion of payment for his job, allowance, or birthday gifts into an account that will be there for that Philmont adventure in 6 years. But, that should be separate from unit fundraising.
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