We are a small village primary school of only approx 140 pupils, but manage to usually raise about £1,800 from our Christmas Fayre and raffle combined. We always hold our Christmas Fayre on a Friday and it’s usually on either the last Friday of November or the first Friday of December, so that we don’t end up clashing with other school Christmas related events.
Our fayre usually starts in the afternoon during school time and pupils are allowed to bring a recommended maximum amount of money into school with them to spend when their class comes round the fayre. Pupils love this chance to purchase a few items by themselves, or to have a go at a fayre game in a slightly less busy and quieter atmosphere. Our fayre then usually opens for parents/carers etc to join us once school has finished and all children have been collected.
These are my top tips for making the fayre a success:
- If you are having a raffle where tickets are sold in advance, then start your prep as early as possible (See my other blog post on 'How to run a Raffle')
- If you’re holding any part of the fayre during school time, ask permission for Yr6 pupils to help run stalls. It is good for their maths skills, as they’re having to work out change etc! (We usually have an adult helper supervising 2-3 stalls that are close together, in case of any problem.) Quite a few Yr6 children then stay on to help after school, but we get written parental permission for this.
- Start asking for adult volunteers to help run stalls early on and then remind them at least a week in advance and again the day before. It’s amazing how many people agree to help and then forget or make other plans in the meanwhile!
- Also, start asking for any items that you need parents to donate as early on as possible. Try not to panic if nothing seems to come in until the last minute, although that’s easier said than done. I always panic every year!
- Have a mixture of stalls that sell things and some games.
- We usually have a toy stall (selling a mix of donated new and second hand items, which are priced accordingly), a sweet stall, a stall selling LED wristbands etc, a Jolly Pot stall (plastic pots that are sent home for parents to fill and return with items appealing to children), & a Cake/refreshments/hot-dog stall.
- We have games such as a Soft Toy Tombola, Lucky Dip, Lucky Lollies, Malteser Game, Name the Teddy & a Disc Drop Game (purchased from Baker Ross).
- We also have face painting, nail painting & glitter tattoos after school. We ask for parental permission for these. Stamptastic sell a range of face paints too and if your PTA is an affiliate on their PTA Rewards Scheme then your PTA will receive a commission when you purchase form them!
- After school we also have a Water or Wine stall, which is only open to adults. (It works a bit like a tombola, but because alcohol is involved we obviously don’t allow children to participate!) This always raises us quite a lot of money!
- We usually have a variety of outside businesses that have stalls as well. This is a double edged sword though. You are guaranteed some income from the business for hire of the stall, but then money is being spent with them and not on PTA stalls. However, it can be a good way of sourcing more raffle prizes because we usually charge £10 per stall + the donation of a raffle prize.
- Make sure that you have a team of people to help set-up in advance of the start of the fayre and also to clear away afterwards. It’s easy to underestimate how long this can take!
- We also usually have a visit from “Santa”. We invested in a really good costume and have a DBS checked “friend” of the school who helps us out in this role. We create a grotto for Santa and then he gives each child who pays to see him a small gift. Our PTA teacher rep also dresses up as an elf and helps Santa in his grotto! Again, this only runs after school to ensure that we have parental permission.
Helen Boyde – Chair of Llanfair Primary School
Llanfair Primary School is an affiliate in The PTA Rewards Scheme! Have you heard about The Stamptastic PTA Rewards Scheme) In 2018, Stamptastic paid out over £16,000 in commission and handed out over £20,000 in fundraising vouchers! If you would like to find out more please click here If you would like to write a blog post for us in return for a £30 fundraising voucher for your PTA please join our Stamptastic PTA and Schools Facebook Group to find out more!)