Charity Digital – Topics – 50 incredible fundraising ideas

Marion Steward

 

For fundraising, people love the classics. Pub quizzes, non-school uniform days, bake sales, and football tournaments are all favourites for a reason. But poetry slams, duvet days, hackathons, raffles, cheese tasting, and exclusive high-end dog washes all deserve a lot more of our attention. 

 

That’s where we can help. There are quite literally hundreds of fundraising ideas waiting for you. So, without further ado, here are our top 50 fundraising ideas and our top tips for making them special. 

 

Skip to: Virtual fundraising ideas 

Skip to: Animal fundraising ideas 

Skip to: Workplace fundraising ideas 

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Skip to: Fundraising ideas for kids 

 

 

Ten incredible virtual fundraising ideas  

 

During COVID-19, people turned to Zoom and livestreaming platforms to embarrass themselves for a good cause. They performed absurd acts in the name of kindness. They sang and they danced as though the screen protected them from the judgment of others. It did not, but they needn’t know that. 

 

With virtual fundraising looking to become a huge part of the post-COVID-19 landscape, we thought it best to start with some brilliant virtual fundraising ideas.

 

 

Truth or dare…or just dare 

 

Let’s start as we mean to go on – weird. There are so many ways to raise money by embarrassing ourselves.  Schadenfreude means big money in the charity sector. So our first idea, and probably not our best, is to take the childish game some of you still play as adults and use it for social good.   

 

You can put prices on various dares and have people purchase that dare. Once they match the price, you and your team of intrepid volunteers have to follow through. It goes without saying that you should not do anything dangerous, or anything that could harm yourselves or others. 

 

Here are some quick ideas for dates: Shave your head, skydive, shave your friend’s head when they’re asleep, wax your legs and chest (and whatever else), or put on fancy dress for several days.   

 

And anything can be a dare. You just have to be stupid enough to do it. For plenty of other daring ideas, check out the following article from the Irish Cancer Society’s article.  

 

 

Virtual auction  

 

The auction is a classic of the virtual fundraising genre, by which we mean it’s been quite popular for about two years. Hosting a virtual auction requires three essential ingredients: a host, an audience, and some ridiculous things to sell.  

 

For a host, that’s you. For the audience, you’ll need to create a buzz on socials or through other marketing and pick a platform, such as eBay for Charity, Donate, or Givergy. Then you just need to find something to sell and pick the right price, perhaps asking stakeholders or volunteers or donors.  

 

Think outside the box. You do not simply have to sell some really nice TV, or a bracelet, or other typical items that people could buy themselves. Choose instead experience days, funny items, and sentimental items. 

 

Or go even further. Sell an ‘evening with the host’ or even a 1:1 lesson in [insert something you can do moderately well]. If your manager can play the EastEnders theme song on the piano, for example, sell a 1:1 piano lesson with your manager. People love the ridiculous and you should embrace that.  

 

For more information, check out our longer article: How to hold a virtual auction. 

 

 

Virtual bingo 

 

You were thinking of an idea but couldn’t quite remember what it was? Then we came along and wrote the idea that you were thinking? And you said to yourself: Bingo!  

 

Yes, bingo. Virtual bingo nights are a fun way to appeal to all demographics. It’s easy, cheap, and you can do it all over Zoom. You can even personalise the night, creating a printable bingo sheet tailored to your audience, which could raise awareness or simply add to the fun.   

 

Cup of tea (number three) sorted. We had to Google that, so you’re welcome. 

 

 

Virtual karaoke 

 

Virtual karaoke is like a virtual singing contest, just without the talent. The virtual karaoke is actually really simple. You could download a dedicated Karaoke app, or simply fundraise via Zoom. The latter is the easiest option – and likely to increase your general reach. 

 

To host karaoke over Zoom, gather an audience, ask them to send requests to the host, find their songs on YouTube, share their screen when it’s their turn, make sure everyone else is muted, and then let them sing their embarrassing little hearts out. 

 

If you want to go further, if you absolutely must, then you could turn karaoke into a sort of Eurovision song contest, asking singers to represent a particular country. 

 

You can simply ask people to donate, leaving the fundraising button on Zoom. Beautiful voices will likely raise lots of funds and terrible voices will likely raise even more. 

 

 

Virtual dance party 

 

A virtual dance party is not too dissimilar to virtual karaoke, only slightly less embarrassing. All the host needs to do is play some songs and ask people to dance. Make sure that everyone dances at the same time. The alternative, everyone watching one person dance, can get a little dicey. 

 

You could make the dance party ticketed, with all proceeds going to your chosen charity, or you could ask people to donate during the event, giving what they can. Encourage wine and snacks and anything else (within reason) that will make people get up and dance. 

 

 

Virtual gig 

 

If music be the food of love, then it should raise money. Fundraising gigs proved particularly popular during the pandemic, with people trying to fill in the void left by empty fields, concert halls, and theatres. Loads of once live events went virtual, with entire festivals livestreamed

 

In the post-COVID-19 world, you can launch hybrid gigs, making the most of the authentic in-person experience along with the reach that virtual events allow. Start by picking an appropriate venue, one that will allow you to record the event. Then the fun begins as you can start to find artists. 

 

Think local. Bigger names do not always have the bigger pull. Bands and artists from your area will create a buzz. Then you need to decide on the price of the in-person ticket, decide on the price of the virtual ticket, and then start marketing on social media and beyond. 

 

For our step-by-step guide, check out: How to host a fundraising gig. 

 

 

Virtual cheese tasting  

 

Enough of dancing and music, let’s talk about culture and by culture, I mean cheese.  

 

There are various options when it comes to cheese tasting. The first is to find an expert, offer tickets to a select group of cheese enthusiasts, host a tasting night, and promote active interaction and discussion. You can include some deliverable cheese as part of the ticket.  

 

Alternatively, ask as many people as possible and split every into rooms and let chaos reign. Tell everyone what cheese to buy, add some wine, and add a donation button. Put on some little cheese-eating contests, maybe a dare or two, and ask for donations throughout the event.  

 

 

Virtual murder mystery 

 

Who knew you could do a whodunnit on Zoom? Virtual mystery events are a great way to raise funds. And, unlike most of other events, they include blood and murder, so could be particularly fun around Halloween. 

 

You can host the event on a livestream platform or on Zoom and give people a narrative or an interactive experience, depending on your approach.

 

There are loads of options to check out online, with some favourites including the classy black noir, the more graphic Zombie Cannibal Asylum, or the Ghost Ship Murder Mysteries. Find one that you like or take inspiration and create your own! 

 

You have two options for tickets. One is to create a page using an online donation platform and simply ask for donations, which can work for certain events. Alternatively, you could ticket the event.

 

For charities, the Light subscription plan includes unlimited free events, unlimited users and guests, and e-ticketing. Or check out Yapsody, or TicketTailor as other great options. 

 

If the thought of dictating a ticket price is not your style, Eventbrite’s donation tickets might be for you. By creating an event on Eventbrite and choosing the ‘donation ticket type’, attendees can choose the amount they want to pay, instead of a set price. 

 

 

Gaming for Good 

 

Charities are increasingly using Gaming for Good initiatives to link up with gamers to raise funds and promote good causes. Gaming for Good usually relies on people streaming, with viewers opting to donate while they interact on platforms such as Twitch

 

Gaming for Good fundraisers rely only on spreading the message, asking people to join, and asking for donations. Remember, though, that Gaming for Good is about putting on a show, interacting with viewers, perhaps making them laugh or cry. 

 

 

Hackathon  

 

Hackathon is the portmanteau of the words hack and marathon. The term refers to events where computer programmers and others co-operate to solve real-world problems. 

 

To throw a hackathon, start by establishing a theme and ensure that theme resonates with your target audience. You could then identify key stakeholders who will sponsor the event, adding funds, and offer incentives to show that they will benefit, either through the hacking or through promotion. 

 

Decide whether you want to organise an internal hackathon, depending on exclusive expertise, or open it up to the public. Then you just need to host the event. 

 

Begin by defining the objectives, giving the hackers all necessary information, and perhaps splitting into teams to work on projects. Then you can begin. You can ask for money during the event, too, to add to the sponsored funds. 

 

At the end, consider offering some prizes and sharing success on your socials.

 

 

Ten incredible animal fundraising ideas 

 

Animals say the funniest things. No, wait, that’s kids. Animals do the funniest things and funny things raise funds. The greatest fundraising efforts typically involve either profundity or playfulness, each capable of raising an emotional response that moves people towards their wallets.

 

Remember, before we begin, to always ensure the safety and happiness of animals. Raising funds should not lead to stress or any harm caused – so please practice caution.

 

 

 

Dog wash  

 

There are plenty of reasons to wash a dog and fundraising is one of them. Bathing our canine friends is often a joyless task, one that the owner avoids wherever possible.   

 

That’s where you can help. Volunteer to do the joyless task in exchange for donations. All you need is some easy-to-find grooming equipment, which could include: a bucket, an old brush, small tub (for the braver among you), sprayer, soap, towels, and nice-smelling oils (for the fancier among you).  

 

Then just wash hundreds, if not thousands, if not millions, of dogs. Save the world, one clean dog at a time. You could perform the dog wash as a one-off event – a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity – or make it a regular occurrence.  

 

You could sell tea, coffee, and cake to dog owners while they wait for their dogs to dry – and raise a little more money. 

 

 

Buddy run  

 

The buddy run is essentially the fun run, only more fun because a dog, cat, hamster, cheetah accompanies you. (Bit of advice: do not buddy run with a fish. They’ll only slow you down.) 

 

The buddy run could be a small event, with just person and pet, asking friends to donate and perhaps watch while you and your buddy run, say, 5km. (Remember not to run too far, because despite the way some of you talk to your animals, they are not actually humans and, in most cases, cannot run quite as far.) 

 

Alternatively, you could set up a buddy run and involve as many people and animals as possible. Think of it like a Noah’s Ark situation, but with more humans and more dogs (or pets) and likely in a park. Noah’s Park, basically.   

 

 

Yoga with animals 

 

Do you know your Downward Dog from your Cobra? Have you done the Swan, the Camel, and the Butterfly? Why not include actual animals in your yoga and raise funds, too?  

 

Maybe don’t bring an actual Cobra because it’ll actually kill you, and probably not a Swan because the Queen will likely kill you, and I’m not sure where you’d get a Camel, and Butterflies are super delicate, so maybe just bring your dog…and stretch away

 

Get a group of you and livestream the event to confused viewers. Add a donation button because watching animals watching humans perform animal shapes must be worth at least a tenner. Or simply charge participants for money, because doing animal shapes in front of animals is worth money, too, apparently. 

 

Alternatively, team up with a local animal shelter or petting zoo. Ask them to provide some animals, invite people to do yoga, and raise awareness about their cause during your meditations. 

 

You could help a good cause, confuse a dog, and find nirvana – all before lunch.   

 

 

Sponsor an animal 

 

We know people who have sponsored hundreds of animals, evidenced by the piles of cuddly toys gathered around bedrooms. Sponsoring an animal is a fun, selfless, and simple way to make a difference and support a charity.  

 

Many charities offer updates and send photos showing how your chosen animals are getting along. Sponsors can follow their animals through their lives, knowing that your donation made a difference.   

 

 

Make animal cards  

 

You don’t need to be an expert to create charity cards. All you need is a bit of initiative and some exceptionally cute animals. You could feature your most photogenic felines, or cheeky canines, or other animals that are likely to make people coo. Go cute. Cute sells, especially on social media. 

 

You could use the back of the card to give information about the animal’s life, along with information about how your chosen charity helps – raising funds and awareness at the same time. 

 

Plenty of companies will create bespoke Christmas cards for charities. You will need to work on the design, but many companies can support that, too. You can sell the cards on your charity website – if you have one – or alternatively sell them locally, in accepting stores or by setting up a stall. 

 

Plenty of charities, such as Cancer Research UK and Macmillan, are already selling great Christmas cards – so follow their lead. For animal inspiration, check out the RSPCA’s brilliant range.  

Dog grooming 

 

Similar to the dog wash, but a little fancier. Lots of animal shelters have some options for dog grooming, which keeps residents in good shape. Why not use that service to raise some extra funds? Why not attract the local community and ensure their pets look their best? 

 

Dog grooming is an art, not a science, and, as with all art, not many people know what they are doing. So ensure you have an expert on hand to make sure the dogs remain happy and content.  

 

Ask for donations based on the grooming provided, or ask people to donate whatever they feel comfortable donating. Offer free services for any dogs that really need the help, especially if owners are not able to meet your prices. 

 

And remember, fundraising with animals is about supporting animals, your community, and your charity. Do not lose sight of one while trying to support the other. 

 

 

Pet photo shoot 

 

We all know certain pets love the attention. Social media is awash with evidence of people who basically think their cats, and dogs, and tortoises, are more handsome than yours. 

 

You can capitalise on that trend and make money for charity. Host a pet photo shoot. Hire a professional photographer – you can likely find one willing to offer charity discounts – or perhaps just find someone with a decent camera and force them to wear more flamboyant clothes. 

 

Set up a shoot with a backdrop like a desert island, or a police station, or anything that matches your chosen vibe. If you are able, have interchangeable options. If the pets are willing, have quick accessories to hand. Make it adorable. 

 

Then all you need to do is sell the pictures, either as prints or  online – posting pictures on socials and asking for a donation. For the more tech-savvy among you, consider selling digital images as non-fungible tokens (NFTs). Who wouldn’t want a cat policeman as an NFT?  

 

 

Make an animal calendar 

 

If you followed the above idea, you have loads of photos of animals, right? You’ve just hired a photographer and created an entire studio just for snapping pets. Go one step further, make it more professional, and create a calendar. 

 

There are plenty of services online that can help you turn strange pictures of animals into a structured calendar, such as Team Calendars and Ask Print.  

 

Set a price for the calendars – think realistically, set an achievable sales target, and balance against expenditure. Then comes the important part: marketing. We’ve talked about the popularity of animals in the world of socials – now is your time to capitalise on that ever-growing trend.  

 

Publish images and captions on all relevant social platforms, ensuring you give a little information about your charity and highlight that the calendars would make perfect gifts.

 

Perhaps put captions in the voices of the pets, for added adorableness, and then sell via your website or in local stores – depending on the extent of your audience.  

 

 

Animal discovery days 

 

This idea can take various forms. If you are fundraising for animal shelters, or places that support sick or injured animals, you could hold an open day that lets visitors find out more information about the animals. You could explain the journey each animal has taken and show how funds would help.  

 

Another option is to take people around local wildlife areas, which is a particularly popular if you are supporting conservationist charities. Discuss the wildlife that can be found in various environments. Explain how individuals can protect and support local ecosystems. And, importantly, explain how donations can help to achieve those tasks.   

 

The discovery days could take the form of pond-dipping expeditions, nature trails, forest or mountain walks, or riverside strolls. Ask volunteers to brush up their knowledge, invite local businesses to offer drinks or food at the start, and make it your own.   

 

 

Dog show 

 

It was only a matter of time. The event will be sort of like Crufts, but obviously nothing like Crufts. Embrace the madness. Ensure dog owners and dog admirers have fun. And, most importantly, make sure the dogs are happy. Charge a small fee to enter the competition and provide some small dog-sized rosettes for the winners.

 

Ask local businesses to sponsor the event, with proceeds going to the charity, or perhaps just ask them to participate, with stalls and drinks and whatever else you might need.   

 

Ask viewers to donate with QR codes or text-to-donate, perhaps even pulling out the old-fashioned tin-bucket, and use socials to spread information about your chosen charity. And, above all else, ensure you and our canine friends have fun!

 

 

Ten incredible workplace fundraising ideas 

 

Let’s face it, workplaces can be a little cold and loveless. So why not add some fun and entertainment into your workplace? And why not raise some money for charity while you do so? 

 

 

 

Fancy dress 

 

The limits of fancy dress are endless. We suggest themes – and not normal ones. Find something interesting, like ‘guess the inventor’. Or better still, choose ’characters that hide in plain sight’ so that seven of your colleagues come to work dressed as Wally of Where’s Wally? fame. 

 

Or pick a theme that marries with your organisation. So, for example, if you are a publishing house, you could come as your favourite characters from books. If you are a sports clubs, come as the athletic superheroes from your childhood. 

 

An important point: always ensure fancy dress remains respectful. Pick an appropriate theme and enjoy the fun. Be creative, not stupid. No one wants HR to join the party.   

 

 

Trivia night  

 

What’s one of the most popular fundraising ideas for the workplace? 

 

That’s right, fancy dress, but we’ve already covered that. So let’s go a little tamer, a little more intellectual. Trivia nights are a great excuse to get everyone together. They are easy to organise, just requiring you to gather teams, find a host, and prep some questions that you found online – or for the more adventurous, devising your own questions. 

 

Ask people to pay the price of the ticket, pick some cheap prizes for the winners, and serve drinks and food to cater to guests and raise a little extra. Encourage donations during the event – once the booze has started flowing – by popping QR codes on tables for people to scan and donate, or add a donation button to Zoom or other platforms if your fundraising is virtual. 

 

And, if you are brave, combine trivia night with fancy dress. Maybe some of you could disguise yourselves as people who know some of the answers. 

 

 

Swear or sorry jars 

 

This is the long-term fundraising solution to end all long-term fundraising solutions. It goes on forever. Two of the most popular options are swear jars and sorry jars, but you can really use the fundraising device to mould behaviour in any way you like.

 

We are not suggesting you manipulate your colleagues, but the fundraising solution provides a pretty sound incentive. 

 

You could ask for a donation each time someone hums or sings a song that the office loathes. You could have a jar for each time someone leaves the lid off the coffee. It’s entirely up to you.  

 

 

Sponsored silence 

 

Ask friends, colleagues, people on socials, family, and whoever else to sponsor you for a length of silence. You could even take part in a team-wide sponsored silence. If you do so, consider picking a day when you are not all stuck in meetings, particularly with clients. Clients tend to like talking.  

 

If there are only internal meetings, get creative and find ways around them, using tech to support the silence. 

 

 

Sweepstake at work 

 

Remember the Euros? When was football heading in our general direction? The sweepstake provides a lot of fun – and it does not need to always revolve around football.

 

You could have sweepstakes on the number of sweets in a certain jar, the time it would take bragging Barry from Sales to run 100m, the number of mouthfuls it takes to finish an out-of-date cake, and so on.  

 

Remember to ask everyone to donate when entering the sweepstake. And, as ever, try to provide some information about your cause. Every fundraising event, however silly, however small, is an opportunity to create a lifelong donor.  

Donate your skills 

 

Sell your skills. If your manager can play the piano or ukulele, sell that. Even if they play badly, perhaps especially if they play badly, you’ll surely make some money. Ask your team whether they have any hidden talents and auction each of them – sell your origami, cookery, or any other skills.  

 

 

Alternative facepainting 

 

Pay not to have your face painted, but to paint faces. 

 

Yes, auction off all (willing) colleagues’ faces and let havoc commence. Employees can bid on friends (or enemies) in the office and paint their faces however they so choose. Ask the office to supply the equipment, bid on faces for charity, and, as ever, do not be inappropriate.  

 

 

Christmas jumper day 

 

It’s a classic. We all have that one jumper that raises eyebrows. Perhaps a family member knitted you a snowman with a creepy orange nose several years ago and you don’t have the heart not to wear it.

 

Perhaps you have one arm stretching to the floor, while the other resembles a vest. Perhaps you have all of the above. It’s time to embrace your sartorial strangeness – for charity.  

 

Christmas Jumper Day ’tis the least wonderful time of the year, but it can raise money for people who need support. For those without cruel but well-meaning family members, any high street store will sell an odd-looking jumper that you can buy.

 

But remember: the nicest option is the least likely to raise money. The embarrassing jumpers, the ones that look the absolute worst, are the best.   

 

 

Battle of the beards 

 

Grow out your beard for an extended period of time and compete to see who looks the most like a Viking. Pick a time frame, perhaps a month, maybe a year for the more adventurous.  

 

If you’re working often with clients, the latter option may not be the best idea, as clients typically do not like to be surrounded by several Rasputin lookalikes.  

 

In recent years, the battle of the beards has led to popular offshoots. Movember is a good example, which has raised millions men’s mental health through the simple growth of the moustache.   

 

 

Duvet days 

 

We end with our favourite. Host a raffle, selling hundreds of tickets internally, and offer the most exceptional prize. Yes, the lucky winner gets to have a day off work, without any repercussions, just to lounge around under the duvet, watching their favourite TV programmes.  

 

Obviously the raffle should include everyone and obviously it should be signed off by line managers and HR first. Charities could also offer other prizes in a similar vein, such as an hour extra in bed, an summer afternoon in the sun, or some extended lunch breaks. 

 

Check out our recent discussion on the latest fundraising trends here:

 

 

 

Ten incredible sporting fundraising ideas 

 

Sporting events and competitions offer community, comradery, competition, and they promote health. They are a great opportunity for people to bond, socialise, meet new people, and try out new things.

 

So why not embrace the positives and raise money for charity at the same time? Why not use sporting events to fundraise? 

 

 

The Fun Run 

 

It is a classic for a reason. The Fun Run offers charities the chance to bolster their fundraising while also promoting fitness in your community. And it’s easy to arrange. All you need is a park, permission, and some people to take part.  

 

Enlist local vendors to provide food and drink to spectators. Perhaps set up a drinks table, like in marathons, and ask local sponsors to supply the drinks.  

 

A golden rule of effective fundraising events is to encourage the weird, the whacky, the frivolous, and the funny. Invite runners in costumes, runners with pets, runners as pairs, runners running backwards, runners in pyjamas, and so on. 

Ensure the race is accessible, so everyone has the chance to take part.  

 

 

Polar Bear Plunge 

 

To paraphrase the Beatles, all you need is ice cold water. The Polar Bear Plunge is a fun-packed event that encourages fundraisers to jump into the freezing cold depths of literally any small body of water.

 

Take inspiration from previous plungers, such as the good folks at St Albans Sub Aqua Club and find somewhere cold and safe – not the Thames, for example – and just dive right in, literally.  

 

Fancy dress is popular among plungers. Elves, Stormtroopers, Hippies, and Princesses have all plunged, once upon a time. Or perhaps opt to stay on brand and dress as a penguin or Arnold Schwarzenegger’s iconic Mr Freeze.  

 

Serve food, too. Serve hot dogs to people who may well be dressed as hot dogs. Add some drinks, maybe some hot chocolate or hot toddies, and provide blankets to plungers. Remember to place QR codes around, so that people can donate while they’re trembling or laughing at other people trembling.  

 

 

Beat the goalie 

 

Find someone that you don’t particularly like and make them go in goal. Then charge people per shot and offer prizes for people who score three or five penalties in a row, depending on the quality of the goalkeeper.  

 

Make it last for a few hours, so you raise lots of money and annoy the goalkeeper that you do not particularly like. Alternatively, change the person in the goal so everyone has a chance to kick a ball at someone they don’t particularly like. Consider offering prizes for the best penalties, the best celebrations, the best outfit, and so on.  

 

 

Tennis competition 

 

There are lots of ways to host a tennis competition. Consider round-robin tennis matches with singles or doubles teams, or knockout competitions if you can get enough people, charging all participants for the entrance fee.  

 

Or perhaps do winner stays on, with every challenger donating a set fee to charity. Offer prizes to the winners, such as tickets to Wimbledon or perhaps a tennis racket. 

 

Put QR codes on the courts so that spectators can donate, and sell drinks – Pimms, perhaps – and other refreshments, with all proceeds going to charity. 

 

 

Climbing competition 

 

Do not simply climb anything. Take the Shard, for example. Do not climb that. Instead, rent a climbing wall or team up with a local climbing gym and hold (safe and secure) races to the top, time challenges, quirky challenges, and so on. 

 

You can ask people to pay to enter, pay per climb, or simply ask for voluntary donations. You can offer prizes to the quickest climbers and, as ever, make the day an event with snacks and refreshments and raffles and whatever else. 

 

 

Stair climbing competition 

 

Stair climbing fundraisers are a good opportunity to slyly raise lots of money. Consider, for example, asking family and friends and loved ones to donate a certain amount per stair. 1p per stair seems reasonable, for example. 

 

A bit of training, however, and you can trick the people you love into massive donations. The greatest vertical height climbing in 12 hours, for example, was achieved by Christian Riedl, who climbed Tower 185 in Frankfurt 71 times, with each ascent comprising of 988. In total, he climbed 70148 steps. 

 

At 1p per stair, you could raise seven hundred pounds, per person.  

 

Slam dunk competition 

 

Find some basketball courts, recruit local stars to act as judges, put on your best trainers, and start jumping. Consider creating distinct categories for dunks and remember to remain inclusive, with options for free throws and lay-ups. 

 

Charge for entry to each category and offer prizes. Prizes might include worn and signed Jordan 1s with the sole from his second season with the Chicago Bulls, currently estimated at around $800k. Or, if you’d rather, a basketball is always nice.  

 

 

Pay per view 

 

An easy one. Team up with your local pub, clubhouse, or community centre and charge a small fee for people to watch a special sporting occasion. Then add loads of fundraising challenges on top. Consider, for example, competitions, pub games, and other similarly playful options that can raise funds. 

 

Or, alternatively, ask friends to boycott the pay-per-view and donate the money to charity instead, as Premier League fans did in 2020.  

 

 

Arm wrestling 

 

You remember that time in the pub when you arm wrestled your friend to prove your worth? Do you remember how, on reflection, that was a massive waste of time? Well, why not do it again, but this time raise money for charity? 

 

It is the easiest option on our list and perfect for workplaces. You can pick names out of a hat, or just allows participants to choose who they take on (both willing, of course). Or you can do winner stays on again, which increases the stakes and, likewise, the prestige. Charge to enter, or charge per challenge.

 

You can do it all, very quickly, over your lunch break.  

 

 

Charity boxing 

 

Take inspiration from the White Collar Boxing and host your own event. Ensure you have the right equipment and safety is practiced – provide helmets, gum shields, the necessary professional trainers and support, and so on – then just get two people to punch each other over and over again…for charity.  

 

Create nicknames for the boxers – Barry the Bruiser, for example, or Barry the Bus Driver – and give each bout a fancy title – such as The Battle of the Barrys. You could approach a local boxing gym or choose a neutral venue. Charge for the cost of entrance and allow people to make low-odd bets with excesses going to charity.  

 

And, as with so many of the above options, enlist local vendors and ask them to provide food and drink to support a worthy cause. Pop QR codes ringside, obviously, and then enjoy the fun and frolics of an amateur boxing match.  

 

For more, check out our podcast for the past, present, and future of fundraising:

 

 

 

Ten incredible fundraising ideas for kids 

 

Fundraising is for people of all ages. But it is particularly fun when involving kids. So, why not give parents a break, give the kids something excited to do, and give back to charity at the same time? 

 

 

Treasure Hunt

 

A treasure hunt should preferably take place on a treasure island and should involve pirates. If you’re unable to find a treasure island or pirates, then just do it in the local park, or town hall, or anywhere else where you can get permission at a low cost. 

 

Ask people to donate to join. And, as ever, pop some additional fundraising options around with QR codes, numbers for text-to-donate, and even tin buckets. Perhaps get the people holding the buckets to dress as pirates.  

 

And remember, treasure hunts can be virtual, with people leaving clues to follow around the Internet. You can create your own with a little ingenuity, some reliance on Google Maps, fundraising buttons, and a lot of patience. 

 

 

Game night 

 

Game night is the most basic of all fundraising nights. For the physical game night, simply get some board games together, ask for donations for entrance fees, then sell soft drinks on the night. You could ask for kids and adults to get involved, so find games that both find enjoyable.  

 

For older kids, you could rent arcade games or find classic consoles and put on a retro games night. Get the classics, from Donkey Kong to Mario Kart, and put on various challenges and competitions to keep spirits high. 

 

Remote virtual games nights are even simpler. Pick an appropriate game online, perhaps using an app, find some kids and parents who want to play, join together for an evening on Zoom or another videoconferencing platform, and ask for donations.  

 

Alternatively, you could go full Gaming for Good, streaming yourself playing and asking viewers to donate money. For more information on Gaming for Good, check out some of the below articles: 

 

Gaming for Good: the landscape for 2022 

Gaming for Good: the best games to raise funds 

Gaming for Good: how to connect with influencers 

 

 

Lemonade stand 

 

It is a classic and it raises money for charity. Choose your location, preferably somewhere where people walk, preferably somewhere away from other shops, supermarkets, and other lemonade stands.  

 

Then make some lemonade. There are loads of great recipes online, but you probably don’t need them. Just do lemon, sugar, water, and mix until perfect. It is as simple as that. 

 

Consider adding some other treats, too. Bake some brownies or cakes, perhaps throw in some shop-bought chocolates and charge excess. Make sure your stand looks great and perhaps consider advertising on Facebook and other places to bring in local customers. 

 

 

Easter Egg hunt 

 

Ask shops to donate chocolate and ask vendors to serve food and drink. Get older kids to hide the eggs so that you do not have to, offering payment in the form of chocolate. Then ask younger kids to start hunting. 

 

Make the hunt an event by adding loads of other fun activities, including face-painting, raffles, and other village fete-style games, like the one where you fish for a duck. 

 

 

Art attack 

 

Run an art competition in local schools, community centres, youth clubs, churches, or communal spaces, and ask kids to submit their paintings, drawings, sculptures, and other masterpieces. If you really want to challenge, pick a theme for the event. 

 

Have someone judge the competitors, offering various small prizes for some of the painters that took part.  

 

Consider making the paintings come to life with an exhibition for the contributors and parents. Hang up the art and offer canapés and glasses of orange juice in flutes.

 

Consider auctioning the pieces, with all proceeds going to charity. You can do that in-person, with a gavel and some fast talking, or you can host a virtual auction.  

 

 

Bring and buy sale 

 

An easy one. Simple ask people to bring in something to sell that they no longer want. It could be unwanted books, DVDs, watches, toys, or whatever else.  

 

Put on the event as a one-off or a regular event in a communal space. You could, for example, have a stall after school once per month to sell all you have accumulated. 

 

 

Make a writing anthology  

 

Encourage budding Shakespeares to write short stories, comic strips, poems, whatever else, and collate them into an anthology. Design a cover and reach out to local businesses that might help you produce them for free – or at discounted rates.  

 

You can showcase the anthology at an event, encourage people to buy drinks and food from local vendors. Perhaps even ask the students if they’d like to read passages and witness the first readings of prospective literary geniuses.  

 

 

Teddy Bear’s Picnic 

 

If you go down to the woods today, you’re sure to raise some cash. The Teddy Bear’s Picnic is a great excuse to get out in the sun, make your favourite sandwiches, socialise, and drink too much tea. You can go on a bear hunt, too, but remember that in Britain, bears are increasingly rare. 

 

Still, though, you could adopt the same methods as the Easter Egg hunt, only using cuddly toys. Grab the teddies and hide them safely, then go with the kids to find the bears. Read the children a book at the end and maybe even sing the song we all know and love over some lovely food and drink.  

 

 

Non-school uniform day 

 

The key to non-school uniform day is to not wear your uniform. Seems obvious. But some of us have suffered. To raise extra money on non-school uniform day, ask kids to indulge the art of fancy dress and ask friends for a donation.  

 

Remember the funnier the costume, the more money you’ll raise. No one wants to donate to Superman or Wonder Woman, but a human-sized chicken or traffic cone could help your cause.  

 

 

Uniform Day…for teachers 

 

Encourage your teachers to put on your school uniform for charity. That might require some needlework, perhaps some creativity, but the teacher can set a fundraising goal and promise to broadly embarrass themselves if that goal is met. 

 

It’s basically a reversal of the usual, giving power to the students. Because, as The Who famously said, the kids are alright.  

 

And there you have it! 50 amazing fundraising ideas that are sure to improve your fundraising efforts, support your cause, and help the people who need it most. 

 

For more information, check out our podcast below on how to put on a great fundraiser:  

 

 

https://charitydigital.org.uk/topics/50-incredible-fundraising-ideas-10004

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