Prepare My Mission's practical fundraising: Partner with a restaurant
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Über practical fundraising: Partner with a restaurant (5 steps)

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(and get a free fundraising flyer template)

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Download this guide 
(and get a free fundraising flyer template)

Download the free PDF guide
Input your email address
and we will send you a download link:

A mission trip will take you out of your comfort zone. Most people expect this as they travel abroad and experience a new culture. However, this growth outside of your comfort zone doesn’t start when you board the plane, it starts now.

As you look through this guide, you’ll be tempted to think, “I can’t do that” or “Eh, this isn’t for me.” Resist this response.

Fundraising probably isn’t something that you do on a regular basis. Because it’s outside of your norm, it’s probably outside of your comfort zone, too. If the thought of putting together a fundraiser makes you feel a little anxious, that’s ok. It means that you’re growing and moving out of your comfort zone.

Finally, remember that it’s not all up to you. God often calls us to do things that we wouldn’t normally do to display His power and love (Moses leading the Israelites, David defeating Goliath, Peter leading the early church, etc.). The bottom line is, God knows exactly how much money you need to fundraise. And He’s not worried about it.

“So don’t worry about these things...your heavenly Father already knows all your needs.” (Matthew 6:31-32)

Let’s get started.


Many restaurants are willing to “partner with you” in organizing a fundraising event at their restaurant. It's a win-win because you bring the restaurant some business and they give you a portion of the food sales for your mission trip!

Chain restaurant vs. Local restaurant

Time Required

It will take you about 2 hours to plan your restaurant fundraiser. That’s not a lot of time, but you need to do this 30-60 days in advance. (Restaurants don’t like to plan last minute.) Scheduling your fundraiser a month out will give you plenty of time to promote the event. Finally, you’ll need to promote the event frequently for 2 weeks leading up to the fundraiser night.

How to pull it off

Step 1: Put together a list of possible fundraiser dates about 30-60 days from now. Keep in mind that restaurants usually prefer to do fundraising events Monday-Thursday. (Restaurants usually don’t plan fundraisers on the weekend because they’re already really busy.)

Step 2: Contact a local restaurant (have your list of possible fundraiser dates ready). Pick a restaurant that is close to your church or organization. If the restaurant is close to your friends and family, they’ll be more likely to come.

Step 3: Set the fundraiser date with the restaurant.

5-Step Restaurant FundraiserStep 4: Promote your fundraising event with flyers. Restaurants will typically give you some flyers for your event (with fill-in-the- blanks). If they don’t, you can use the one provided in the downloadable guide (or create your own). Distribute flyers to your church group, classmates, and coworkers.

Step 5: Promote your fundraising event on social media for 2 weeks leading up to the event.

How much money can I raise?

How much money you raise depends on how many people show up at your event. Typically, restaurants will offer to donate 15%-20% of sales to your trip. If the average fundraiser attendee spends $10 at your event, you’ll receive $1.50-$2.00 of that sale. If you have 150 people (30-40 families) eat at your fundraiser, you could raise around $300 from food sales alone.

This doesn’t include the possibility that friends and family might make a donation to your trip outside of simply buying food. While it should never be expected, personal donations amounting to $200- $300 are common.

$300 (food sales) + $200 (other personal donations) = $500

This works best for...

This type of fundraiser works best for those that have a large network of friends and family. Invite your church group, friends on social media, classmates, and coworkers. The more people you invite, the better this fundraiser works.

If you don’t have a large network, consider partnering with a few friends that are going on the mission trip with you. Pool your networks together to create an even bigger (and more fun) fundraising event, and split (don’t compete) the donations that are given.

Pro tips

Consider avoiding a restaurant chain and partnering with a local, “mom and pop” restaurant instead. Often times restaurants like these are willing to donate a higher percentage of food sales (anywhere from 20%-50%), especially if they personally support what you and your mission trip are doing.

Restaurant ideas

Chick-Fil-A, Chipotle, Yogurtini, Moe’s, Panda Express, California Pizza Kitchen, Bruster’s, Boston Market, Arby’s, Red Robin, Sonic

Ready, set, go

It’s time to get started! You can do it. Remember: God knows exactly how much money you need to fundraise. And He’s not worried about it. So get out there, have some fun, and enjoy the process.

Written by CJ