School fundraising: We hit our target in one strike

How one school hit gold with a goal-scoring speed challenge

‘We hit our target in one strike’

As a Parents Association, we usually raise funds with seasonal events, such as a summer picnic. These take lots of time to plan and organise, so this spring we tried something new – a goal-scoring speed challenge run by an external fundraising event company called ProStrike.

The challenge involves pupils collecting sponsorship and then – on the day of the event – kicking a ball into the back of a huge inflatable football goal as fast as they can. The inflatable has an integrated camera and the speed of each shot is displayed on a digital screen. Every pupil has three turns – and receives a certificate recording their fastest time.

The great thing is that ProStrike organises everything. The company takes a 50% cut of all money raised, but this is made clear in communications to parents and it covers the cost of running the event (including staff and equipment on the day) and the provision of prizes. Our event was held in spring and involved every class at our three-form entry junior school. The plan was that funds raised would go towards a £5,000 update to the ICT suite – and we publicised this in our newsletter and on our socials.

ProStrike delivered a virtual assembly, introducing the speed challenge to pupils and highlighting the prizes they could win if they raised certain amounts of sponsorship. These ranged from water bottles, wristbands, gym bags, medals and footballs to a trophy for those who hit the top tier.

ProStrike provided sponsorship forms, as well as letters for parents and online templates and posters. On the day, the team arrived early to set everything up and ran the whole event. It took around 20 minutes for each class to take part and there was lots of banter and a bit of competition. Even the teachers had a go, with our headteacher achieving the top speed. All the children were buzzing at pick-up.

We were expecting each child to raise around £10, but people were very generous and the option of online sponsorship proved popular. Some children were incentivised by the top prizes and the prospect of getting a trophy. In total, we raised around £8,500, with the PA receiving £4,411.94. All funds were gifted to the school, which was able to replace the old computers with new equipment. My daughter is nine and says the new ICT suite is a hit because the children can do so many more things in their lessons now. The challenge was a great experience that surpassed any fundraising event the PA could have run!

  • Anna-Marie Cook, St Helens Junior School PA, Brentwood, Essex

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