How to host a Chipotle fundraiser, and a few other restaurant fundraisers in the neighborhood

Posted by Tamy Lukacs

You may have already heard the lore of the Chipotle fundraiser; eat delicious burritos with your friends and have a whopping 50% of the sales donated to your organization. Restaurant fundraisers such as this are perhaps the easiest, most fun, and most social way to raise money, and they are popping up all over the map. If you love burritos, pizza, steak, and raising money, then you will love this post as we walk you through how to host Chipotle, California Pizza Kitchen, and Outback Steakhouse restaurant fundraisers!

 

The Chipotle Fundraiser

You’re already crazy about the burritos, and now the burritos are showing their appreciation by giving back. With the relatively inexpensive large portions, vegan/vegetarian options, and the speedy cook time, a Chipotle fundraiser is ideal for university groups, with busy and hungry college students always on the go! But that is by no means exclusive; Chipotle hosts fundraisers for community youth groups to food and sustainable agriculture groups.

 

If you are looking to host a fundraiser through Chipotle, the first step is to visit their website and submit an application, but be sure to plan ahead because the application needs to be submitted at least six weeks prior to the date you wish to fundraise. Within that form you will fill out what your organization is, the number of people you are expecting, a date and time, location, and why you wish to fundraise. Each organization may only host one Chipotle fundraiser every twelve months.

Chipotle fundraiser food

 

You are also required to provide tax identification information in order for your fundraiser to be approved, such as the organization’s tax ID number, and depending on the type of organization you may have to fill out a W-9 form. As expected, whenever dealing with tax info, this can be an incredibly difficult and confusing endeavor. But don’t get discouraged by the intimidation of tax identification information, because the Chipotle team is there to help if ever you should need it, with explanations and deadline extensions.

 

Also be warned that not all types of fundraisers will be approved. Chipotle is looking to exclusively work with:

  • K-12 schools
  • libraries
  • youth community groups
  • community gardens
  • food and sustainable agriculture groups
  • university groups.

 

They will not host fundraisers for groups such as:

  • Individuals (scholarships, stipends, fellowships, personal assistance)
  • For-profit ventures
  • Religious groups for religious purposes
  • Capital campaigns, endowment funds or memorials
  • Lobbying, political or fraternal activities
  • Individual study, research or travel grants

Due to the large number of requests the receive, even if your group exists within the criteria they support, Chipotle still may not be able to honor your fundraiser. However, if your application is approved, you will be sent a personalized flyer that your attendees and supporters can show in print or on their phone on the day of your fundraiser. Two to three weeks after your fundraiser you will receive a check for a mind-boggling 50% of the total net sales (excludes gratuities and taxes) from that day donated to your cause!

The CPK Fundraiser

Yet another universally loved food in our list of universally loved foods that are giving back: the pizza. California Pizza Kitchen has perfected the thin crust pie since the mid-80’s, and have been giving back to their patrons through fundraisers since the late-90’s. As a primarily dine in restaurant, CPK is perfect for more family oriented groups such as PTA fundraisers, plus what kid doesn’t love a pizza? CPK offers vegetarian and gluten free options, appealing to the tastes and needs of almost all patrons.

California Pizza Kitchen Pizzas

 

CPK has had their own fundraising system for years, but has recently partnered 195 locations with GroupRaise, a super easy platform of planning a fundraiser. To submit a request, all you need to do is go to visit our website, select the date/time/location of the CPK, and enter the name of your organization and some simple contact information. The whole process takes just one minute!

 

CPK only requires you to submit your request two-weeks prior to your desired date and allows your organization to host fundraisers as frequently as you want. They are also perhaps less selective in their eligibility process than their Chipotle counterparts, by approving most 501c charitable organizations, non-profit schools, and community groups.

 

Once your event gets accepted, you’ll receive an online meal page where your supporters can RSVP and get a reminder right before the event so no one forgets to go. On the night of your fundraiser, and within the booked time frame, your friends and family can show up for dine in or take out, and by mentioning that they came to support you, they will be participating in your fundraiser. No flyers needed!

 

After your event, you’ll receive an email letting you know how much you raised and within the next four to six weeks, they will send a check directly to the address you listed on your profile for 20% of your total net sales!

 

 

The Outback Steakhouse Fundraiser

 

Mate, if a Bloomin’ Onion and thick cut steak doesn’t already blow your mind, then raising money while chowing down on a Bloomin’ Onion and thick cut steak surely will! Partnered with GroupRaise, Outback is now hosting restaurant fundraisers, donating 15% of the net sales to your organization. At an average of $20 per meal, that is a juicy chunk of change!

Juicy Outback Steak

Outback is a dine in restaurant, and again perfect for family oriented groups looking to sit down and share a meal together. They have an extensive “Joey Menu” for kids that is sure to satisfy.

 

To book an Outback fundraiser, visit GroupRaise.com, choose Outback for your desired restaurant, find a location near you, and request a date and time with the name of your organization and some contact information. All causes are welcome, as long as you have a passionate following who love steak!

 

There is no limit as to the number of fundraisers you can host at Outback, so long as each one is requested with at least fourteen days notice before the desired fundraiser date. All that needs to happen on the day of your fundraiser is for friends and family to show up within the allocated time frame, mention that they are there for your cause, and eat some delicious food! Four to six weeks after your event, you will receive a check for 15% of the bill that day to go to your cause.

 

 

 

Recap

Here is a quick comparison of these three awesome, popular, and neighborhood restaurant fundraisers:

Percent of net sales donated

 

  • Chipotle: 50%
  • CPK: 20%
  • Outback: 15%

 

Minimum time to request fundraiser before desired date:

 

  • Chipotle: 4-6 weeks
  • CPK: 2 weeks
  • Outback: 2 weeks

 

Amount of time after fundraiser before donations are received

 

  • Chipotle: 2-3 weeks
  • CPK: 4-6 weeks
  • Outback: 4-6 weeks

 

Maximum fundraiser frequency

 

  • Chipotle: 1 per 12 months
  • CPK: No limit
  • Outback: No limit

 

Type of restaurant

 

  • Chipotle: Fast (but delicious and nutritious) food
  • CPK: Dine-in or take-out
  • Outback: Dine-in

 

Deliciousness of food

 

  • Chipotle: Delicious
  • CPK: Delicious
  • Outback: Delicious

 

 

Now you have all the information you need to decide which restaurant fundraiser is right for you!