Guide on Calendar Fundraisers: Types, Sales, Sponsors, Etc.

Planning to have a calendar fundraiser? Wondering what a calendar fundraiser is? Want to know who could use calendar fundraising? Need help setting up a calendar fundraiser? This article’s got you covered!

This article is based on our experience with setting up calendar fundraisers for various causes and finding actual success with them.

Calendars have a universal appeal and can work well to serve as tangible, daily reminders of a cause or a mission. Calendar fundraisers can be successfully used by non-profit organizations, private organizations as well individuals interested in using the power of calendars to raise funds for a cause. Calendar fundraisers can also be set up in numerous ways for either one-time fundraising or recurring fundraising.

In this article, we will discuss who could be the possible beneficiaries of calendar fundraisers, the types of calendar fundraising, as well as the entire process of setting up a calendar fundraiser. Read on for a one-stop guide on calendar fundraisers.

Note: This article is not on fundraising calendars. It is about raising funds using calendar sales or sponsorships.

What is a calendar fundraiser?

A calendar fundraiser is a way of raising funds for a cause using the sale of calendars or sponsorship of calendars. The calendars to be used for fundraising could be physical calendars, planners, pocket calendars, or even digital or online calendars.

Calendar fundraisers gained popularity as a formidable form of raising funds from the 19th century when charitable organizations would create attractive calendars with branding, design, and quotes complementing their primary mission printed on it. These calendars would then be sold door-to-door and proceeds received from the calendars would be used to support the cause of the non-profit organization.

The use of calendar fundraisers widened in the 20th century with easier access to printers and required stationery as individuals and private organizations also started selling calendars to raise funds to meet their specific objectives.

With the advent of digital media, calendar fundraising has become more creative and its scope and execution have been extended to online calendar sales as well.

Securing sponsorship from corporates and high net-worth individuals against offering their brands a space in calendars has also become one of the most popular ways of using calendars to raise funds for a cause.

Who could use a calendar fundraiser?

Calendars are a highly customizable tangible fundraising product and almost any organization or individual could use it as per their needs, resources, and budget.

Some organizations that could greatly benefit from a calendar fundraiser are


Schools could use children’s artwork on calendars and sell these calendars to raise funds for school supplies, field trips, school infrastructure, etc.

Themed educational calendars could also be made by schools to educate kids on various themes like animals, nature, environment, science, etc. The calendar could be made using attractive photos, informational graphs, etc associated with these themes

Foster Care Organizations

Calendars are one of the best ways to raise funds for foster care. Foster care charities could use it as a fundraising idea or even individuals who wish to raise funds on behalf of or for an organization could use calendar fundraising for foster care support.

Foster care calendars could speak of

  • stories of children who thrive in foster care
  • statistics about foster care
  • pictures of foster care graduates or achievers, etc.

Child Care Center

Childcare centers can develop a calendar that celebrates the growth and milestones of the children in their care. Each month can showcase a different child and highlight their accomplishments, such as learning a new skill or reaching a developmental milestone.

Parents and loved ones can purchase the calendars as keepsakes while supporting the center’s programs.

Religious organizations

Religious organizations can create calendars that feature

  • a passage with an uplifting message
  • religious quotes, verses or sacred texts
  • photos of community outreach efforts
  • details, practices, and photos of important observances, festivals, or religious events in each month
  • photos or artwork of religious places across the country or world

Animal Shelters and Rescue Organizations

Animal shelters and rescue organizations can create calendars featuring

  • adorable photographs of their animals available for adoption.
  • General wildlife photos
  • Statistics about animal welfare and rescue operations

Environmental Conservation Groups

Environmental conservation groups can produce calendars showcasing

  • stunning landscapes and trees
  • wildlife pictures
  • conservation project pictures
  • statistics about global warming, environmental degeneration, etc
  • environment-related quotes

Sports Teams and Athletics Clubs

Sports teams and athletics clubs can create calendars that feature

  • action shots or portraits of their players.
  • Famous sports personalities
  • photos of milestone moments or historic wins

Historical Societies and Museums

Historical societies and museums can design calendars that highlight

  • significant moments in local history
  • historical landmarks
  • or artifacts from their collections

Health and Medical Organizations

Health and medical organizations, such as hospitals or disease research foundations, can create calendars that raise awareness about specific health issues.

Calendars can feature stories of patients, healthcare professionals, or important milestones in medical research, with the proceeds going towards supporting medical advancements and patient care.

Cultural and Arts Organizations

Cultural and arts organizations, including theaters, art galleries, and music groups, can develop calendars that showcase

  • upcoming performances, exhibitions, or artistic creations
  • photos or art about famous artists
  • costumes and attires over a period of time
  • vibrant photos and information on cultural festivals and celebrations for each month

Community Service Organizations

Various community services organizations, such as food banks, homeless shelters, or literacy programs, can produce calendars that highlight their services, success stories, or the individuals they serve.

These calendars could serve as a reminder of the ongoing need for support and offer a way for individuals to contribute while staying connected with the organization’s mission.

The possibilities of designing calendars for fundraising are almost endless. Any organization could customize the calendar to meet its objectives, mission, and design tastes.

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Types of calendars for fundraising

The best part about using calendars for fundraising is that you could create any calendar of your choice. You don’t need to stick to a specific style or format.

Desk calendars

  • Use these if the majority of the people you intend to sell the calendar to are working people who spend a considerable amount of time at their desks.
  • These types of calendars work well for organizations that want to print photos or other educational graphic designs on the calendar divided into monthly themes.

Pocket Calendars

  • Pocket calendars are useful for people on the go. These fit in standard pockets, wallets or clutches.
  • They have limited space for imagery or graphics. But you could use these to print your logo, branding or small quotes. Some of the dates in the calendar could be printed in a different color to signify important days.


  • Planners are a craze amongst students and are an excellent way to connect with a younger crowd at school, college or university fundraisers.
  • Planners could even be used for office fundraisers.
  • You could print monthly themes, and quotes, mark important events or even win sponsorship from companies and display their branding graphics to make the planners effective fundraising tools.

Digital Calendars

  • Digital calendars work well with most people. They can be delivered through an app or could be emailed or made available for download.
  • Digital calendars can be interactive, allowing individuals to click on specific dates to learn more about events or make online donations.
  • Digital calendars also work well for getting sponsorships or for building long-term funding partnerships as they can easily integrate videos, audio or other brand media.

How to make a calendar fundraiser?

Calendar fundraisers, even though extremely effective, need planning and a carefully laid out strategy. The planning and strategy could be laid down on an individual level or even on an organizational level. At an organizational level, you may need to dedicate a team to spearhead the calendar fundraiser event.

To successfully plan a calendar fundraiser, follow the key steps below:

Set a goal

Goal-setting is the first step of any type of fundraiser including calendar fundraising. Goals need to be set on 2 fronts

  • how much money do you want to raise
  • in how much time or by which due date

To gain clarity on these goals, you may need to do a lot of brainstorming on who your target audience is, what is their affordability, what cause are you working towards, and how much marketing you may need to do ahead of your fundraiser event going live, how many people you would need to approach, how much manpower or how many volunteers you would need.

Based on experience, we can say that there is no ideal chronological way to navigate these brainstorming sessions as every factor is interdependent.

Appropriate enough time to the planning stage and only begin working on the next steps once you have laid a solid foundation with clear goals.

Create an attractive calendar

Depending on what you have identified as your target audience and the goals that you have set, your next immediate step is to work on creating the fundraising calendar. You could choose to create any of the types of calendar listed above.

But while working on the calendar, make sure

  • the overall theme of the calendar aligns with your calendar fundraiser cause.
  • Check the layout, typography, color scheme, and overall aesthetics. Ensure that the calendar is easy to read, navigate, and visually pleasing.
  • proofread the work thoroughly and get it corrected immediately. Nothing is more dampening than customers being turned away on account of silly errors in your calendar.
  • Check the accuracy of the dates and the days.

Fix a price

There are various approaches to calendar pricing

  1. you could sell each calendar for a specific price – set a reasonable price depending on your target audience. Make sure you leave enough margin for profits after printing, marketing and other costs.
  2. you could seek sponsorships from companies to set off the creation costs and give away the calendars for a discount or for free.
  3. you could make a sponsor-a-day calendar which involves getting a person to sponsor each day of the calendar by donating the amount equal to the date sponsored. The sponsorship could be recurring or one-time.

Create a marketing and sales plan and execute it

Develop a comprehensive marketing and promotion strategy to generate awareness and drive sales.

Utilize various channels such as social media, email newsletters, website banners, and word-of-mouth to reach potential buyers. Highlight the unique features, benefits, and impact of the calendar in your promotional efforts.

Distribution Plan

Establish a distribution plan to efficiently deliver the calendars to your supporters. Consider options like direct shipping, local pick-up points, or selling through retail partners or online platforms. Ensure that the distribution method aligns with your budget, logistics, and the preferences of your target audience.

Tie all the loose ends of the fundraiser

Once the sales and distribution have taken place, tie the loose ends of the fundraiser to close it neatly

  1. Use the funds raised for the predetermined cause
  2. Prepare financial statements in respect of the fundraiser
  3. Analyse if you have met your goals and determine ways in which you could improve your performance for the next fundraiser
  4. Send a gratitude note to everyone who contributed

FAQs on Calendar fundraising

How much money does a calendar fundraiser make?

The amount of money you can raise using a calendar fundraiser depends on factors like the cost of producing the calendar, other mark-ups like sales and distribution costs, the pricing strategy employed for the calendar fundraiser, the profit margin and the total sales.

Printed calendars can be produced for a cost of about USD 4-7 per calendar. Online calendars can be produced for a much cheaper amount.

So the amount you raise from a calendar fundraiser depends on how many calendars you sell and the profit margin involved. But realistically, it is possible to raise over USD 10,000 from the sale of 1000 calendars.

When is the best time for calendar fundraising?

The best time for calendar fundraising is the holiday season typically towards the end of the year. For maximum sales, launch your fundraiser in the months leading up to the holiday season and tap into the gift-giving spirit and boost sales.

If your calendar has a seasonal theme or is tied to specific events or holidays, it’s ideal to launch your fundraiser in advance of that particular season. For example, a calendar featuring stunning autumn landscapes could be introduced in late summer or early fall when people are anticipating the season’s arrival.

If your cause aligns with specific awareness months or campaigns, launching your calendar fundraiser during that time can leverage the increased visibility and attention surrounding the cause. For instance, if your organization focuses on breast cancer awareness, launching the calendar fundraiser in October, which is Breast Cancer Awareness Month, can help generate more interest and support.

What is Sponsor a Day calendar?

In a Sponsor-a-Day calendar individuals or organizations can dedicate a specific day on the calendar to support a charitable cause or honor a special event or individual. Each day on the calendar represents a sponsorship slot, and sponsors have their names or logos displayed prominently on their chosen day.

The sponsorships can be one-time or recurring on a monthly basis. Usually, in a sponsor-a-day calendar, the amount of money sponsored corresponds to the date sponsored. For example, the 19th day of the month is sponsored with a donation of USD 19. One person or organization may also be allowed to sponsor multiple days or sponsor a higher amount.

This unique fundraising concept allows sponsors to contribute to a cause while gaining visibility and recognition.

What is a Cash Calendar Raffle Fundraiser?

A Cash Calendar Raffle Fundraiser is a fundraising event that combines the concept of a traditional calendar with a raffle. Participants purchase numbered calendars for a set price. Each calendar represents an entry into the raffle. A drawing takes place where a calendar number is randomly selected. The selected number’s calendar owner wins a prize.

A cash calendar raffle is an excellent way to boost calendar sales, increase profit margins and make the calendar fundraising event more fun and appealing.

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