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Does your organization provide supplies for holiday candy gram fundraisers? Consider sponsoring this fundraising idea to connect with more organizations!

4 Simple Steps for Hosting a Holiday Candy Gram Fundraiser

1. Gather your supplies.

To make each candygram, you’ll need three basic materials: candy, cardstock print-outs, and ribbon. Buy your candy in bulk, either by purchasing it online or partnering with a provider, to make sure you get plenty of it at a low cost.

You could have participants write their messages on regular paper, but cardstock will hold up better as you attach it to the candy and deliver the candy grams. Find a form online or create your own for each slip where participants can include these pieces of information:

  • Sender’s name
  • Recipient’s name (and contact information if you’ll need to deliver it somewhere besides your organization’s facility)
  • Message

Finally, you’ll need some colorful but strong ribbon (curling ribbon holds up well and looks great!) to attach the cardstock to the candy.

2. Set your price per candy gram.

When deciding how much to sell your candy grams for, you’ll want to cover the cost of supplies and make a decent profit that will go toward your cause. But you also need to keep the price reasonable for participants so you’ll sell as many as possible.

This strategy is a good place to start for price calculation: 

  • Figure out the cost of a single piece of candy, a single cardstock print-out, and a single piece of ribbon.
  • Add each individual cost together. 
  • Subtract the combined cost from your proposed price to figure out your profit per sale.

For example, if you figure out that the combined cost is $0.35, you could sell each candygram for $1, meaning you’ll make a profit of $0.65 on every sale. If you sell them for $0.75 each, your profit will only be $0.40, which may not be worth your time. But if you sold for $2 apiece, you’d make a whopping $1.65 in profit—and possibly drive away participants who don’t think one note and piece of candy is worth that much.

3. Open your sales point(s).

The two areas where you need to be strategic in your selling are time and location. You’ll probably want to open your sales about 2 weeks before the delivery date to give people enough time to buy candy grams at their convenience, but not so much that they forget about the fundraiser. Also, close your sales 4-5 days before delivery so you have time to sort and label the candy.

In terms of sales locations, setting up a table in a high-traffic spot, like a school hallway or office common area, is often the best way to sell candy grams to a large number of people. If you have the time and capabilities, you could also create a page on your organization’s website to sell the candy online.

4. Deliver the candy grams.

When the delivery date for your candy grams arrives, make sure you’ve planned an efficient way to get them all to the right people.

Deliveries within your school, office, or other organizational facility are fairly easy as long as the candy grams are sorted in advance based on the person’s likely location in the building. Check meeting or class schedules in your organization’s systems in advance to determine where recipients will be at what time.

If you’re delivering off-site, you’ll need several people who are willing and able to drive around town and keep track of addresses throughout the day. This might be more challenging, but with the right amount of preparation and motivation, you’ll be able to pull it off.

Holiday Candy Gram Fundraiser FAQs

What type of candy should I use?

You’ll want to get something that 1) fits with your holiday theme and 2) doesn’t contain common allergens, especially tree nuts or peanuts, so that as many people as possible participate. 

These are some safe starting points:

  • Halloween—candy corn or candy pumpkins
  • Christmas—candy canes
  • Valentine’s Day—heart-shaped lollipops

If you do use something that says it contains or is made in a facility that processes a common allergen, let people know on your event marketing materials.

How do I get people excited about my candy gram fundraiser?

Using a holiday theme will be one step to generate interest, but make sure to stick to that theme and promote the event well. A few ideas to make your fundraiser more exciting include the following:

  • Design creative flyers and/or social media posts to spread the word.
  • Cut your cardstock print-outs into shapes to match the theme, like pumpkins for Halloween or hearts for Valentine’s Day.
  • Buy ribbons in the colors associated with your chosen holiday—black/orange, red/green, red/pink, etc.
  • Have your delivery people wear theme-appropriate costumes as they hand out the candy grams.

Besides getting more participation now, committing fully to your theme might help make your fundraiser into a yearly tradition.

What do I do with any leftover candy?

Look for a candy buy-back program in your area—this way you’ll get at least some of your money back. If you can’t sell the candy, either find a place to donate it or keep it. Just make sure to check the expiration date if you keep it—someone in your organization has probably experienced the joy of finding Halloween candy in May only to be disappointed when they discover that the candy is out of date.

Organizations That Host Candy Gram Fundraisers

Many types of organizations can host a candy gram fundraiser. Just keep in mind that while you’ll get a lot of contributions from it, each donation will be very small. The cause you’re trying to fundraise for needs to fit with that model.

A candy gram fundraiser would be beneficial and easy to pull off for these organizations in particular:

  • Schools
  • Companies
  • Churches
  • Clubs/community organizations
  • Sports teams

Whether you belong to one of these organizations or benefit from them, suggest a holiday candy gram fundraiser for a fun, easy way to raise money for a cause.