Soccer Fundraiser -
A Tournament

The really great thing about a soccer fundraiser tournament is that it can work for all types of age groups.

It will work for kids, teenagers and even adults!

You can even consider having a tournament that has different age categories!

But you will obviously need to decide whether this fundraising event will work well for your organization...

And you do this by simply asking whether your supporters or members enjoy playing soccer, or if they are soccer fans.

Soccer Tournament Fundraiser - The How To! (Photo by Luigi Guarino / Flickr)

If they do play, or are soccer fans, then they will more than likely enjoy playing in a soccer fundraiser tournament, but...

If your supporters, for example, prefer ice-hockey... Well, then it may be a better idea for you to hold an ice-hockey tournament!

Regardless of what tournament you hold, a sports event is usually always profitable. If you organize it properly, people will come (People love to be involved with sport), and if people come, you will raise funds... Simple!

Let's get going...

Running a Soccer Tournament:

Quick Links...

Find a Location | Tournament Format | Volunteers & Organizing | Fundraising Ideas | Promoting & Registrations | Fine Tune for Annual Event | Thank

Find A Location:

Your fist step after deciding to run a soccer fundraiser tournament will be to find a location. You will need a sports field or fields to hold your event.

If you are a school, or a sports club, or an organization with a sports field, then you obviously need not worry.

On the other hand if you do not have the facilities yourself you are going to need to find them and possibly hire them.

Look to get your Venue Sponsored...

Try your best to get a venue for free. You are a good cause and use that as motivation! Look to your local schools, sports clubs, municipal grounds...

Somewhere, someone should be generous enough to help you out and hire their grounds to you for free for the day.

It would probably be a good idea to offer something in return for their generosity. For example let them have a sales stand of some sort on the side of the fields (for free), or let them advertise as much as they want.

Essentially, "help and be helped".

Facility Needs...

When booking the facilities make sure that they have everything you need there. Like running water, electricity, changing rooms and toilets etc.

It is unlikely that they won't, but if they don't have them, you may have to look elsewhere, or organize to provide those things through mobile toilets etc.

Decide On A Format:

Your next step will be to decide on what type of tournament format your soccer fundraiser will be. Will you have an 11 a side tournament with full playing time or will it be a mini-tournament with 6 a side.

Personally I would recommend that you hold a mini-tournament. Reasons being...

It will be easier to run, it will be easier for people to get a side together (organizing 5 more friends to play with is easier than organizing 10 friends).

Soccer Tournament Fundraiser - The How To... (Photo by Tam Tam / Flickr)

The playing fields will be smaller so you can make better use of the space you have. You will also have shorter games allowing the teams to get a chance to play more games against different opposition.

Of course that's just the way I would do, you may find that your supporters and teams would rather play 11 a side, full 90 minute games. If that's the case then go for it!

Recruit Volunteers & Get Organized:

When running any event you are going to need help, and the same applies for a soccer fundraising tournament.

Firstly work out what the jobs are that you are going to need help with, before and on the day, and then recruit the right people for those jobs.

Find members in your organization, use friends, family and anyone willing to help out.

Being organized is of such high importance and you need to make sure that you and your team are! There's nothing worse than arriving to play at a tournament that isn't organized properly!

So make sure your volunteers know exactly what their jobs are and make sure they report back to you, or to whoever is coordinating the event, on a regular basis.

Here are some of the things that will need organizing...

  • Finding And Confirming Team Entries
  • Finding Sponsorships And Prizes
  • Organizing The Fixtures/Catergories/Groups/Finals etc.
  • Designing And Printing The Event Program
  • The Fields - Line markings, goals, (mowing?), spectator seating, signs (field numbering, where to find toilets etc.).
  • Running Of Additional Fundraisers (Ex. A Raffle)
  • Food And Drink Stands
  • On Day Registration
  • Announcements/Audio System
  • Officiating And Refereeing Etc.
  • Recording Results And Calculating Which Teams Qualify For Final Rounds.
  • Prize Giving And Thanks
  • Cleaning Up Afterwards
  • And Of Course, Counting Funds Raised!

Fundraising Ideas:

Obviously your first form of fundraising for the day will be through your entrance fees. Your entrance fees should cover any costs that you have and still put cash into your organizations back pocket.

Of course you don't want to make it too expensive so that the cost chases people away. After all, you do want to get as many people there as possible.

By having many people there, you can then raise more funds through the other fundraisers that you hold during the event.

And it is through these fundraisers that you will make your soccer fundraiser tournament really profitable. Here are some ideas you will use...

  • Sponsorship And Advertising - Although you will ask for sponsorship of prizes you can also get businesses to sponsor categories and final matches. You should then give them publicity in the event program and through the announcements.

    You can then also sell "field-side advertising" and advertising space in your programs!
  • Food And Drink Sales - You will raise good funds with this during the day (And night; if you have a bit of a party afterwards). Be organized with this and sell popular quick selling products!
  • Raffle And Auction - If you want you can hold both of these but I would definitely suggest you at least hold a raffle. Find some great prizes, sell cheapish tickets, and you will always pull in a good amount of funds with a raffle!
  • Consider Having A Small Market - In my small local community we run quite a large annual touch rugby tournament at the end of November. And to raise more funds and attract more people (essentially more females) we have a Christmas market at the event. It's has been very successful!

    This would also work well at a Soccer fundraiser tournament!

    So if you want to do this, you can either sell stand space where shops will pay to have their stands there, or you can get percentage pledges where shops will pledge a certain percentage of their turnover to be donated to your organization!
  • Market And Sell Your Other Fundraisers - At all your events you should look to market and sell your other fundraising ventures.

    Like your Organization's fundraising apparel.

Get People There:

I have already said that it is important to get as many people there as possible.

Obviously you don't want too many teams so that you're over-full, but just make sure you do full your playing field entirely... and that as many supporters and spectators come as well!


The best way to register teams is through an Event Registration Website. It's simple to setup, simple to promote, and easy for your teams to register through.

Not only will you be able register teams and participants, but also volunteers and sponsors etc.

Plus you will be able to promote your sponsor/advertisement options and sell event products like Apparel.

Soccer Fundraiser Tournament - The How To! Add-on Fundraisers throguh event product sales and sales stands.(Photo by Tadias Magazine / Flickr)

Promoting & Advertising:

You will then obviously need to advertise the event properly!

If you are a school or sports club you will should invite all the schools or clubs that you usually play sports against. You should easily fill your playing field that way.

If you're not, you are going to need to advertise to a broader audience. So use all the usual advertising methods like...

  • Promote your soccer fundraiser tournament through your fundraising website, your newsletters, and social networking sites like Facebook and Twitter.
  • Email all your supporters, friends, and family, and encourage them to forward your email on.
  • Use word of mouth.
  • Use flyers, posters and adverts in local news prints.
  • Don't just advertise for teams but also advertise for spectators who might want to come watch some exciting sport and have a fun day!
  • If you're going to hold a market as well make sure you advertise that too! It will be a great way of attracting more people.

Fine Tune It Into An Annual Event:

After the first tournament that you run you will have learned so much about running the event, that you will be so better prepared to hold another one.

And if it was a success, which is very likely, holding another one will definitely be a good idea!

If the soccer fundraiser was well organized, FUN, and everyone enjoyed themselves, you will find that all the teams that entered this year will want to book their place for the following year. The word will also spread and you will find that you can make the event bigger, if you so wish!

So if it works for you the first time round, look to hold another, and even better, soccer fundraiser the next year!

And Don't Forget To Thank Everyone:

This is always one of the most important parts of any fundraiser...

Make sure you thank everyone involved! The people that helped, the people that sponsored, the people that participated, and even the spectators... EVERYONE!

Make sure that they all feel appreciated. With that feeling they will all be happy to help out again at your next soccer fundraiser!

I wish you all the best of luck with your soccer fundraiser tournament!

Other Sport Fundraising Ideas:

Golf Fundraising Day

Running Charity Fundraising Events

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› Soccer Tournament

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