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How to Raise Money for Your School Without any Work or Personal Donations

Updated on January 25, 2016

The Essentials That PTA Provides for our School

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PTA provides art supplies for our school.  This is artwork our daughter did in her 1st grade classroom.PTA provides many of the supplies in this kindergarten classroomOne school's efforts to raise money; organizing a carnival is WAY harder than eScrip!I have been in charge of the Book Fair for our school the last few years. It's a LOT of work and eScrip is so much easier!
PTA provides art supplies for our school.  This is artwork our daughter did in her 1st grade classroom.
PTA provides art supplies for our school. This is artwork our daughter did in her 1st grade classroom.
PTA provides many of the supplies in this kindergarten classroom
PTA provides many of the supplies in this kindergarten classroom
One school's efforts to raise money; organizing a carnival is WAY harder than eScrip!
One school's efforts to raise money; organizing a carnival is WAY harder than eScrip!
I have been in charge of the Book Fair for our school the last few years. It's a LOT of work and eScrip is so much easier!
I have been in charge of the Book Fair for our school the last few years. It's a LOT of work and eScrip is so much easier!

Easy and Free Fundraising for Your School

With all of the budget cutbacks for schools around the nation, an increased burden has been placed on parents within the community to provide basics for the classroom. Our school has had success with an easy and free fundraising tool. Sounds like an oxymoron, right? Well it's not, I promise! Our school community earns money with minimal effort and no monetary obligation through eScrip.

Raising Easy Money With eScrip

The eScrip program is a fundraising tool in which participating merchants donate a percentage of your purchase amounts back to your school or organization. Purchases can be made with grocery cards, credit/ATM cards, and retail/drugstore cards. All that you need to do is register your school with the eScrip program and encourage parents to sign-up. It doesn't cost you anything—just the time to register!

Teachers are asking parents for school supplies and more time in the classroom. Our district in particular went on an enormous campaign last year to raise money so that we could keep our art, physical education, and music teachers. We were lucky that we live in a community that can afford to donate enough to keep these positions, but many communities cannot. This year our PTA is on a "Free Money for the School" campaign. We have made a big push at our school to have all parents register for eScrip, and so far it has made us money.

The holidays are a perfect time to encourage grandparents and other family members to register and use eScrip's Online Shopping Mall and AutoEarn program.

eScrip's Online Mall and the AutoEARN Program

The eScrip Online Mall is just that, a place to shop online while earning money for your school. Many popular merchants participate in the program. If you are shopping for something specific from an online store, go to the Online Mall to see if that store participates in eScrip. Search for your merchant and then click through from eScrip to the vendor. Depending on the vendor, your school can earn between 2% and 40% of the entire purchase.

The AutoEarn Program is a toolbar interface that lets you know whether a site you are visiting is part of the eScrip program. Click on the toolbar's "E" icon and then the "click here" button to earn from any transactions on that site. (If you don't press the "click here" button, you will not earn for your school.) Below is a screenshot of the AutoEarn toolbar for Groupon.

AutoEarn: Don't Forget to Press "Click Here"

A Few Merchants Participating in eScrip

  • Pottery Barn
  • Crate and Barrel
  • Nordstrom
  • Amazon
  • Gap/Old Navy/Banana Republic
  • Sears
  • Home Depot
  • Sephora
  • Apple Store
  • Barnes and Noble
  • Petco
  • Shutterfly
  • eHarmony

Online Shopping with eScrip

The sign-up process can be confusing, but don't give up. eScrip is an opportunity to make money for your school with minimal effort!

Have you signed up for eScrip?

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    • Robin profile imageAUTHOR

      Robin Edmondson 

      13 months ago from San Francisco

      Thanks, Kari. eScrip can be a big money maker for schools, especially if Amazon is included! :)

    • k@ri profile image

      Kari Poulsen 

      13 months ago from Ohio

      I wish this had been around while I was a parent. I remember buying so many things I didn't need and didn't want. They would go into garage sales, lol.

      I do have a friend who may be interested. I'm going to send her this link. She is very active with her grandchildren. Thanks for the information. :)

    • Robin profile imageAUTHOR

      Robin Edmondson 

      6 years ago from San Francisco

      Thanks, Sinea. It's worked really well for our school! Good luck, raising money is an endless project for most schools!

    • Sinea Pies profile image

      Sinea Pies 

      6 years ago from Northeastern United States

      I work in a private Christian school and we need to fund raise just to keep the lights on!:) This sounds really great. I am going to look at it further. Thanks.

    • Robin profile imageAUTHOR

      Robin Edmondson 

      6 years ago from San Francisco

      Thanks, Steph! We do Box Tops as well, and it's another great "free fundraiser". I appreciate the comment!

    • stephhicks68 profile image

      Stephanie Hicks 

      6 years ago from Bend, Oregon

      eScript is a great program for school fundraising and I think we've used it with Boy Scouts too. Also, don't forget about BoxTops for Schools on General Mills products. You can also donate for free to your schools via Target's programs. Wonderful hub, Robin! Cheers, Steph

    • Robin profile imageAUTHOR

      Robin Edmondson 

      6 years ago from San Francisco

      Thanks, Simone. When you register your credit cards and grocery store club cards every time you shop your school is rewarded - pretty cool!

      Thanks, Randomcreative. You can always sign up for your local school, it doesn't cost you anything! I appreciate the comment!

    • randomcreative profile image

      Rose Clearfield 

      6 years ago from Milwaukee, Wisconsin

      I love the Scrip programs. When my sister-in-laws were still in grade school, my husband and I used the grocery and gas cards for their school all the time. I hope that I have this opportunity again with my own kids someday.

    • Simone Smith profile image

      Simone Haruko Smith 

      6 years ago from San Francisco

      This is so neat! I've heard of school fundraising programs that go through local grocery stores, but did not know that online vendors offered the same thing. I'll have to tell my teaching and school-administration-involved friends and family about this.

    • Robin profile imageAUTHOR

      Robin Edmondson 

      6 years ago from San Francisco

      Thanks for the comment, justateacher. I'm glad it's working for your school; I'm hoping it's great for ours as well!

    • justateacher profile image

      LaDena Campbell 

      6 years ago from Somewhere Over The Rainbow - Near Oz...

      Our school is also using escrips. So far there has been great response from our families. Hope this earns you lots!

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