Each year, schools around the country create plans for a variety of ways to raise funds; often times these efforts are coordinated by parents through PTA/PTO groups. Fundraisers provide money for a variety of necessary school improvements and scholarships. Schools use these funds to purchase playground equipment, classroom materials such as updated globes and maps, subsidize costly field trips, and many more important items.
In 2000, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s (CDC) School Health Policies and Programs Study (SHPPS) reported that 82% of schools used food and beverage sales for fundraising activities. Among the most commonly sold foods were chocolate candy, baked goods (including cookies, crackers, cakes, pastries), and candy other than chocolate. Selling less nutritious food items for fundraising contradicts nutrition messages taught in the classroom, giving the impression that schools care more about making money than about student health. In contrast, healthful fundraising gives consistent, positive health messages. New school fundraising strategies which include the sale of healthy foods and non-food items, is a public demonstration of the school’s commitment to promoting healthy behaviors among students, families, and communities at large, while helping schools meet their financial needs.
To support healthy eating, consider some of these healthy fundraising ideas!