Fundraising for an Islamic School

After establishing a Masjid in a locality, many Muslim Communities in the West choose to start a full-time Islamic School to address the desire by many parents wanting their children to receive secondary education within an Islamic environment.

ISNA High School

Islamic Society of North America High School, Mississauga, Canada

Establishing these schools usually involves acquiring a new property or renovating – or expanding – an existing one. Of course these are sizable projects, which cost hundreds of thousands of dollars, if not millions, and tuition fees collected for registered students wouldn’t be sufficient to cover the costs. And since these schools are not publicly funded, they have to rely on donations to cover these costs.

Fortunately for Islamic schools, their target donors, primarily from the Muslim community, have a lot of incentives to donate.

We all know the rewards of instilling good manners – Akhlaq – in our children and teaching others the Quran. So, right from the get go, you can expect that when you ask Muslims to donate to your Islamic school, they will respond well to your call.

But, what if your ask is just too big and the donations you receive are just not enough to reach the large amounts your school needs to start or continue operation? What can you do?

Islamic School of Miami

Islamic School of Miami, Florida, USA

As with Masjids, your Islamic school is privileged by being a member of the non-profit sector! In fact, there are many other private schools in the West that have successfully raised large amounts of funds and did that by following established fundraising techniques.

So, as a non-profit organization targeting the Muslim community, imagine complementing your existing fundraising initiatives with tried fundraising techniques from the non-profit sector? You are in for a ride!

In the articles below, we take a look at some of these established fundraising principles in the non-profit sector and explore how we can use them in raising funds for our Islamic Schools.

Donor Stewardship

Once someone makes a donation to your Masjid project or Islamic School, what happens next? Do you thank them? Do you communicate to them regularly providing updates on the progress of the project? Have you ever looked at your donor database to determine how many of your donors are repeat donors?


Storytelling in the Muslim Community
Storytelling in the Muslim Community

Storytelling is very big in the non-profit sector. It is the main technique used to trigger an emotional response from a target audience to solicit donations. Have you ever thought about the individual stories of the various people benefiting from a Masjid or Islamic School? Whether they are regular musallees, or reverts who took their shahadah at your Masjid, or parents of students attending an Islamic school, they all have a story that links them to your organization.