Raise Funds Without Fundraising

Summer is filled with trips, camps and experiences that are life changing.  Summer is also filled with trips, camps and experiences that cost money.  For most youth ministers that means one thing: FUNDRAISERS

That means more work, more effort and less attention on discipling teens.  So, you might wonder, “If I shouldn’t fundraise how do I pay for these experiences?”

You start changing the culture.  Instead of fund raising start:


Giving is a huge part of your spiritual journey and it’s one that we need to communicate to the next generation.  If you are teaching about tithing and sacrificial giving you aren’t giving your teens the opportunity to be blessed. (Malachi 3:10).

Create a culture of giving by building an offertory into your ministry.  You can weave it into a moment of worship or strategically place a basket in your youth space.  No matter the strategy communicate it’s purpose and it’s placement.


Fundraising removes the burden of sacrifice.  While you could pay for teens to go they might not appreciate the experience as much if they aren’t taught how to sacrifice and save.

Sit down with your teens and work out a budget.  Ask them to give up that:

  • Ticket to the movies.
  • Cup of coffee from Starbucks.
  • Video game that was just released.

When they learn to sacrifice they’ll learn to appreciate the trip, or event more.  They’ll feel more like they earned it and you’ll teach them the value of saving.


Fundraisers are an exchange of goods and services.  While they can work they teach people to invest in the wrong things.  Instead of the goods you offer at the fundraiser they should invest in your ministry.

Change the perspective by asking the students to cast vision to friends, neighbors and family.  Teach them to share the why behind this event or trip.  If you can create vision carriers then you will advocate for your ministry in new and amazing ways.


As a youth minister you are probably feeling the pressure to do everything and take your teens everywhere.  A lot of events, camps and trips promise instant results and huge benefits.  And while some of them do follow through on their promises it’s not always worth the work and stress raising the funds.

Instead spend your time and energy pouring into a regular program.  Look at building environments, relationships and consistent opportunities where teens can go and grow deeper in their faith.

Stop fundraising and start raising a generation that is responsible with money.  Use your ministry as an opportunity to teach them how to live within their limits, save and trust God with their money.  Not only will they be blessed, but so will your ministry.

Question:  How do you raise funds in your ministry? Do you agree with this post?  You can leave a comment by clicking here.