DNA test raffle encourages new testers

Far North Queensland must be one of the DNA testing hotspots of Australia, but here at Cairns & District Family History Society we still work hard at encouraging even more of our members (and their families and friends) and visitors to try DNA testing as a part of their family history research.

We have recently started an ongoing raffle for a DNA test kit.

Our raffle box is located prominently in our resource centre where all members and visitors can easily see it.  We sell tickets for $2 each.

As soon as all the tickets are sold, we draw the prize and start a new raffle.


Cairns FHS DNA test raffle box

Although the raffle could easily be used as a fundraiser, the purpose of our raffle is not to make money, but simply to cover the cost of the test kit so we can get as many new people testing as possible, and as frequently as possible.

We purchase the DNA test kits in advance, and prepare just the number of tickets to cover the cost to our society.  Buying DNA tests while they are on sale is ideal, as it means less raffle tickets are required to be sold.

DNA test raffle CDFHS posterWe can vary the prize too… currently it is a Family Finder test kit from Family Tree DNA (the most affordable and effective for Australians and for beginners).  But we can very easily change a future raffle prize to a Y-DNA test, a mitochondrial DNA test, or even an AncestryDNA test – and just increase the number of tickets required to cover the cost.

Tickets are pre-printed, and include a space for a $2 coin to be stuck to the ticket (to ensure that all tickets in the raffle box have been paid for), and an optional checkbox for adding the purchaser’s email address to our DNA eNews mailing list.  The box is locked, and we can empty it regularly for security reasons.

If the winner is a regular member, we can get them started with their DNA test almost immediately.  If the winner is new to our society or is a non-member, we will present the prize kit to them at our next DNA interest group meeting, in order to give the winner the best guidance and support, and to encourage them to attend future DIG meetings (if your FHS doesn’t yet have a DIG, see tips on How to Establish a DNA Interest Group).

Not everyone can afford DNA testing, and not everyone realises the impact it will have on their genealogy, so this is just another way to introduce genetic genealogy to more people.


DNA test raffles

Why not encourage a DNA test raffle at your family history society, local community group or workplace?

All you need is:


I hope this inspires more family history societies to get their own DNA raffle going?


Let us know if you do!



If one of my tickets wins, I will donate the prize to a member who could really benefit from it!




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