Starting a booster club can feel a lot like trying out for the varsity team as a true freshman. You’ll be full of nervous energy, anxiety, and even a bit of excitement. The biggest challenge is simple: you don’t know what you don’t know. It’s hard to pick a sound starting point if you know nothing about booster clubs or fundraising.

The good news, though, is that starting a club is easier than you might expect. This is especially true when you follow the following four simple rules:


First and foremost, you’ll need to incorporate your club. Don’t try to raise money without having a place to put it. 

When forming a corporation, you are formally registering your club with the state. Incorporating it also gives you the ability to apply for a 501(c)(3) designation. This means you won’t have to pay federal income taxes on charitable donations. 

Incorporating a booster club can be complicated. Luckily, there are organizations out there like Parent Booster USA. They handle everything from incorporating your club to registering it as a 501(c)(3) exempt organization. 

Set General Rules

During the incorporation process, you’ll need to establish formal rules, known as bylaws. Your bylaws provide a framework for everything from managing volunteers to electing board members. You need to be very detailed in your bylaws so that everyone knows what your club is about, how it operates, and what its mission is. 

After you’ve got your bylaws in place and have completed the incorporation process, you need to elect or appoint board members. The board will function as the decision-making body for the booster club. You can also accept general members, but you’ll need to create a process for that as well, such as by paying membership dues. 


After you’ve begun raising funds, you’ll need to track every dollar and create a concrete budget. A detailed budget will keep your club on the right trajectory and allow you to help as many students as possible. 

When logging expenses, make sure that you are as specific as possible. Categorize your expenses by type, such as by supplies for concession stands and insurance. You want to know where your money is being spent so that you can identify any waste and maximize overall efficiency. 

Communicate, Communicate, Communicate 

Running a booster club can be a hectic process. Therefore, you and the other board members must communicate consistently. 

Share information with one another over an agreed-upon channel, like email or dedicated booster club software. Make sure you keep donors and parents in the loop, too. After all, they are the backbone of your club and deserve to be treated as such. 

Create a Game Plan and Execute

If you want to start a booster club, don’t let your fear of striking out keep you from playing the game. Develop a plan, partner with trusted entities to help you navigate the incorporation process, and take decisive action. 

In doing so, you’ll be able to deliver valuable support to your school. Most importantly, it will also allow you to help the student-athletes who work so hard to perform on game day.