Estimated reading time: 3 minutes, 22 seconds

summercampSummer is an exciting time. The longer, warmer days are a welcome change for many. Kids, in particular, can’t wait for summer — that is, until it actually arrives.

“I’m bored.”

Parents hear this so often that it just about drives them bonkers. Most moms and dads are maxed out and going full tilt in their careers, taking care of household chores and errands, and in general trying to maintain a healthy and safe family. They can’t drop everything to entertain their children all summer long.

What are these children really saying when they moan and groan about being bored? They’re communicating that they need structure and purpose in their day (even if they don’t necessarily want it). This is an opportunity for your nonprofit to meet an important need in your community by starting a summer camp. Not only will you be fulfilling a community need, but a summer camp program can also help to meet one of your needs: revenue.

In this high-tech age, drive revenue one relationship at a time

With all the technology out there, it can be easy to forget how nonprofits have always been built. More than anything else, you need to develop trust.

People don’t give with their intellect but with their hearts. By building meaningful relationships one person at a time in your community and beyond, you’ll set up your nonprofit for the best possible financial success as well.

And nothing will grow your summer camp revenue like a good word-of-mouth referral. Insightful parents (and grandparents) realize that their most important contribution to society is their children. If you better the lives of the ones they love most, they’ll take notice.

By hitting them in their hearts, you’ll be making a real difference. The natural reaction will be for those in your community to give back through donations or by encouraging others to enroll their kids in your summer camps.

Having great relationships with the members of your community is crucial. One way to foster these relationships is by offering events at your camp that appeal to adults, such as paid concerts or conferences. Not only can these events bring in revenue on their own, but they’ll also help those who visit to take an interest in what you do. You’ll get the chance to share your vision for summer camp with these visitors.

Make it as easy as possible to register

It may seem like common sense, but making the camp registration process easy and user friendly can take a backseat to the many other issues and tasks involved in running a nonprofit. A form builder like JotForm, for instance, can help. You can build a summer camp registration form that not only takes registrations but also accepts payments and collects campers’ medical information. And JotForm is HIPAA compliant, so you can rest assured that all of that sensitive information will be secure.

In addition to making registration a breeze, online forms equip you with a ready-made list for future marketing efforts — both for your camp and for general donations.

You can also use online forms to get feedback from parents and campers so that you can improve your camp and strengthen your relationships with your camp customers.

Ask for advice

It’s always a good idea to ask around to keep up on the latest trends. Find several nonprofits that are already good at gaining revenue through their camps. Ask them what works and what doesn’t. As quickly as things evolve these days, it’s essential to stay current.

While summer camp might seem like the furthest thing from people's minds right now, it’ll be here soon. Now is the best time to set up your nonprofit to earn more than ever in 2019.


Chad Reid is director of communications for JotForm, a leading online form creation software used by event planners everywhere to collect event registrations and feedback. He holds a master’s degree in communication and lives in the San Francisco Bay Area.

Last modified on Thursday, 07 February 2019
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