How can you lend fundraising support to your favourite charity, cause, or community project? There are so many options for raising funds, sometimes it’s hard to know where to start. At Give as you Live, we’ve seen lots of innovative ideas from fundraisers, so we’ve compiled a list of effective fundraising ideas to help you take that all-important first step.
Ways to raise for charity:
Raising money for charity is easiest when you collaborate with others, so who shares your enthusiasm and can be on your fundraising team? It could be family, work colleagues, or a sports team. The Give as you Live team can also help with some ideas if you want to fundraise just through your own efforts
Bake sale: Getting kids involved with some baking is a great way to involve them in some creative activities and raise funds. Just make sure you think of the best time and place to sell your wares in the local community, the baking is only half the job.
Raffle of old toys: We’ve all seen enough Toy Story movies to know that old toys still need love. Why not find them new homes when the kids have outgrown them and do some good with the proceeds as well?
Donations as presents: Some years it’s hard to think of new things to add to the gift list. Making a donation via Give as you Live Donate can be a lovely way to extend the life of a gift, especially for charities that keep you updated about the positive impact your support made.
Summer fetes: When the sun is shining, get imaginative with your fete ideas, there are so many things you can do to create a fun atmosphere. Space hopper races, “guess how many sweets in the jar” competitions, wellie-wanging, hook a duck, apple bobbing, beanbag throwing, tug of war, coconut shy, lucky dip, “guess the weight of the pineapple”, pebble painting… the list is endless!
Make and Sell artwork: Artisan products are all the rage so if you have a creative idea that you can get kids involved you can choose any number of fun design ideas to create valuable products that people will happily buy to raise a donation. You can even use Give as you Live Donate’s fundraising pages to collect donations and add updates about what has sold!
Scavenger Hunt: A scavenger hunt combines all the ingredients of a great fundraising campaign: challenging clues, unique destinations, hidden objects, and the fun of competition. Have participants register as teams or individuals, either by paying a competition fee or raising a certain amount on a fundraising page to qualify.
Talent Show: Kids love to show off their skills and organising a talent show is a great way to capture an audience and fundraise at the same time. If the skills are transferable, you could even add an auction element to the night!
Viral Video Challenge: The TikTok generation will love this as a fundraising challenge, and we’ve seen from the Ice Bucket challenge how these things can take off! Just make sure you choose a theme that is simple and universal so as many people can get involved as possible.
Face Painting:If you’re a parent with some artistic talent, then you’re sure to have a plentiful supply of willing participants amongst kids in the community for some face-painting fun in return for a small parental donation to your chosen cause.
Local Car Wash: Who doesn’t have a soft spot for the car wash fundraiser? Make a difference with nothing more than some soap, water hoses, towels, buckets, and willing hands. Top tip: Have enough people to complete each wash swiftly. Although people want to offer support, they may not wait 20 minutes for a car wash. And have a plan B in case of bad weather.
Gift-wrapping service: Another simple, creative service that kids can easily complete is a gift-wrapping service. It’s not just for Christmas, it can work well for Valentine’s Day, Easter or on-demand for birthdays if you can spread the word far enough! Just get your gift-givers to make a donation to your fundraising page on Give as you Live Donate – you could leave it open for a whole year to see how much you can raise across all seasons.
Sponsored quiz night: For a kids’ quiz night fundraiser, just ensure you pick topics that they can excel at. They can be impatient with general knowledge, but pop music or Disney movies tend to keep them entertained!
Best ways to fundraise at the office
Lunchtime Quizzes: Fundraising that can fit within the working day is always more achievable. Organising a quiz during lunch hour in the office is quick and easy, with the glory of bragging rights enough to get colleagues to put in a small entry fee per person for you to donate. Once collected, pay your donations online!
Dress Down Days: We all love the occasional day of skipping ironing a blouse or shirt and just heading into work in a t-shirt. Why not have people make a small financial contribution for the privilege?
Donate Your Coffee Money: Coffee is essential to start the day for some people, but there is such a thing as too much caffeine. Having a day where people either try going without or just have one less than normal, frees up funds to make a difference. You could set up an office fundraising page on Give as you Live Donate for your colleagues to donate their coffee money to, and they could even donate an extra 25% for free by adding Gift Aid!
Silent Auction: Take away the need for an auctioneer and create an intriguing event using a silent auction format. They have the advantage of being great social events and allow those who don’t wish to be the centre of attention to be involved, helping you raise even more!
Christmas Jumper Competition:The ultimate seasonal version of the dress-down day, with a competitive twist. Every year the sheer variety of Christmas jumpers never ceases to amaze, so why not generate a donation for a chance to show the world your craziest knitwear? It’s not like you get that many chances per year!
Karaoke Night: Have a karaoke machine, that will fundraise! Some people might take a little encouragement to show off their vocal skills, but when you’re in a team environment you can usually win enough people over to make this very worthwhile. Come on, Eileen!
Swear Box: In some offices, this could be especially lucrative! Turn a change of culture from feeling like a punishment to something with a positive connotation by introducing a minor financial contribution for those verbal indiscretions you could do without!
Car Share: Help the environment and your favourite cause! Car sharing saves a huge amount of money, easily enough to generate a worthwhile donation amount over time. It just needs the seed of the idea planted for those who are close to each other.
Matched Donations: Whatever fundraising activity you do as a team of employees, make sure the bosses play their part too! Fundraising is such a good team-building exercise that getting the firm to match the donations you raise should be money well spent.
Community Project Team Building: There is great value in offering your services as a team to local businesses or the community to get involved in projects as part of a team-building day and exchange some hard work for contributions!
EXTRA: Need supplies? Order online or click + collect via Give as you Live Online to generate more donations for your chosen charity!
Office DJ day: Settle the arguments about who gets to control the office tunes by auctioning the rights to who gets to inflict their favourite playlist on the team that day!
Jargon Bingo: Turn the banality of business buzzwords into an exciting fundraising game. Create some simple bingo cards with those phrases everyone loves to hate, and meetings will never be boring again!
Bake-off competition: Don’t just talk about last night’s Bake Off, hold your own version! An office can never have too many treats to try and who knows what hidden foodie talents might be lurking in your team.
EXTRA: Encourage your colleagues to order their ingredients online to raise extra donations via Give as you Live Online.
Best ways to fundraise in a sports club
Kids vs Parents: Getting parents involved in some light-hearted generational rivalry as a special one-off event is a great way to generate funds and get everyone involved in your club’s activities.
Club Disco: Planning a club disco brings everyone together and allows you to invite others from the community to a social event and introduce them to what you do.
Sponsored Car Wash: A great teambuilding exercise or a valuable add-on from volunteers for those who drove to watch the match, take advantage of your facilities to offer the service while they enjoy the game in exchange for a donation to your fundraising page on Give as you Live Donate.
Movie Night: If you have a decent size screen in the clubhouse, why not put it to use with a movie night? Auction the choice of film off to the highest bidder!
Picnic Auction: Create an enhanced matchday experience for your supporters by offering a deluxe matchday picnic option. You might not have an executive box, but you can still create a luxury experience to enjoy!
EXTRA: Order your supplies and ingredients online to raise even more; your chosen retailer will pay a donation to your supported charity when you shop via Give as you Live Online!
Matchday bake sale: Who doesn’t love a half-time pie at the game? Get any talented bakers in your squad’s families to contribute some homemade delights and your matchday supporters will be very happy!
Branded Merchandise: Create special limited-edition kits or club shirts to mark a great season, a cup win or a club anniversary and use one-off merchandise sales to boost your funds.
Fine Jar: Club discipline is important so, for any transgressors, you can improve your team culture, your fundraising and keep your team ethic strong!
Social photo challenge: Give your supporters a chance to get involved with photo challenges for a small entry fee. Create categories for the best action moment, best celebration, and best comedy moment, and use the power of social media to promote and distribute the best entries.
BBQ night: Summer social events are always better with a burger or hotdog. Get the community involved by hosting a BBQ night after a fixture, when appetites are especially strong!
EXTRA: Don’t forget those free donations from Give as you Live Online – order your meat, buns and more to be delivered and your chosen store will donate to your charity!
Equipment sale: If you have a kit which is still usable but you don’t need it, make sure you take the opportunity to sell it on with a decent discount, it’ll come in handy for someone to just play a back garden game at home!
Coaching sessions: Bring the skills you practice to the wider community and get new people involved by offering special coaching sessions for those who want to brush up on their technique.
Signed Giveaways: Get the team to sign the cup final ball, the bat that scored the winning run or any other significant memento of a great team moment. They make great end-of-season raffle prizes – just collect the winning bids via a Give as you Live Donate fundraising page!
Best ways to fundraise as an individual
Raise by gaming: Fundraising via video game streaming is becoming very popular, made easy by new dedicated web platforms such as Twitch. The key is involving popular games like Minecraft or Fortnite that have loyal fanbases. Give as you Live Donate have plenty of gaming fundraisers, inspo here.
Sponsored Walks: Technology has made sponsored walks something anyone can do anytime. Using an app like Strava allows you to walk solo and record proof of your achievement without needing others to verify for you. Captain Tom proved it doesn’t have to be about huge distances, it’s just about inspiring people. You can even link your Strava to your Give as you Live Donatefundraising page to automatically update your supporters!
Art project: Creating your own art for a charitable auction can be enormously valuable to the causes your support. Paint, sculpt, draw; whatever your artistic medium, you can create difference-making works to raise funds with your talent.
Online challenges: Great ideas can be amplified into online viral challenges with a simple hashtag, even by an individual. It could be an activity, a game you invented. If you can explain it memorably, someone somewhere will share your enthusiasm.
Birthday gift fundraiser: Turn your special day into an occasion to give. With a birthday fundraiser, you invite your friends to make a donation to your fundraising page that matches your age or birth date in place of a gift. Social platforms now make this really easy to set up and who is going to say no to you on your special day?
Craft-making: Whether you’re a knitter, a photographer or a model-maker, there are so many ways to turn the hobbies we love into fundraising opportunities. Take advantage of local markets or events to find an audience for your creations.
EXTRA: Order your supplies online from your favourite craft store via Give as you Live Online, and they’ll make a free donation to your chosen charity!
Good deeds: As the saying goes, “The smallest good deed is better than the grandest intention”. So whatever small things you can do in your community, don’t be afraid to offer your time to fundraise in any way you can. It all helps.
Garden produce: If you’re green-fingered, why not put those skills to fundraising use? An honesty box at the front gate for flowers or fresh vegetables is a simple way to offer the fruits of your labours to the community for a contribution to your cause.
Webinars: Fundraising doesn’t always have to be active, passing on knowledge and inspiration is just as valuable. With software now making it easy to host and sell tickets for online talks and presentations, there is a world of subjects you can introduce people to in return for a donation.
Shopping: Using your everyday shopping to raise funds from retailers in return for your custom is what Give as you Live Online is all about. It’s free and simple, so make sure your purchases are doing some good for your favourite cause.
Dog walking: If you have some spare time and neighbours with busy lives, there is a natural opportunity to provide a valuable service as a fundraiser.
Emails and letters: Sometimes it’s as simple as just getting in touch and asking a question. If you have time to drop a line to a local business to ask them for a contribution to a local cause you think they might be interested in supporting, that might be all it takes.
Best ways to fundraise for schools and PTAs
World Book Day: A great way to encourage fundraising is to tie the activity to when people’s attention is drawn to a specific subject, such as World Book Day. This can be themed around subjects, discovering audio books or authors that kids and adults get excited about.
School Non-Uniform Day: No student can resist the chance to ditch the school uniform and express themselves individually. This is such a simple idea that doesn’t cost the individual much but can raise a lot due to universal popularity, especially if the teachers get involved too!
Bring and Buy Sale: One person’s clutter is another’s useful item. Encourage students to have a rummage and there are bound to be a lot of good-condition items to make this idea work. They might be unwanted school items, books, and toys. It’s often a great way to help people save through reuse and raise funds for projects that benefit everyone.
Summer Fête: It’s so important to make the most of the events that bring everyone together. It makes putting on a range of fundraising activities at the same time much easier. If you can add great entertainment, then a small entry fee can help cover costs meaning the activities themselves can ensure their proceeds all go to good causes.
Community Outreach: Seeing the students of a local school come together to help the local community can be hugely inspiring and get everyone to take part with financial support. It could be anything, from helping conserve local green spaces to spending time with elderly people in the community who take a lot of joy from being around young people. Turn teamwork into a fundraising effort that the whole community can reward your class or school for undertaking.
Tombola: Getting parents or school partners to donate items for a tombola can be a hugely valuable way to fundraise. You just need raffle-style tickets and a bowl to draw them from. But do allow enough time to get donations organised for maximum effectiveness!
Social Media Fundraisers: There are so many apps and digital services that school students will happily engage with that it makes a lot of sense to use them.
Skills Auctions: Everyone has a skill that is lacking in someone else! You just need to match up the talent with the need. This is such a positive way of uncovering the enthusiasm and skills of everyone in school, whether it’s academic or not. Set up an auction, promote it to the community and find the value everyone can bring to help someone else.
Alumni Fundraising: People have a lot of love for their old school, so don’t be afraid to ask for their help to come back and be part of it again! They might be able to do that as businesses or individuals, donating time, knowledge, services, discounts, or items to power any number of activities.
School Disco: The era of music streaming has made access to a wide range of music easier than ever. This makes being able to play requests a lot easier, so why not make use of that and make the annual school disco a more democratic event by allowing people to pay to have their favourite tune played by the DJ?
Community Carnival: Whatever type of community group you’re part of, organising a carnival will allow the rest of the community to come and get to know you. It’s a great way to attract new members and host a range of activities for people to try and raise funds in the process.
Talks & Presentations: If you’re a community interest group or based around a specific activity or skill then you’ve got valuable knowledge to share. Organise a talk about local history, take people for a walk to show them something interesting about the local area, the possibilities are endless. These can be easily promoted via social media with a fundraising page for people to donate to in return.
Coffee Morning: Sometimes just inviting people to get together and enjoy a cup of tea or coffee is all it takes to give people a sense of togetherness and brighten their day. Throw in some baked treats and you’ve got the perfect recipe for simple but effective fundraising.
Community spaces hire: If your community group has a venue, then that’s a great asset you can use to host a wide variety of events. Promote the space and its facilities and invite suggestions, don’t feel you have to know the solution, just invite people to think about how they might make use of it.
Personalised crafts: For any community group of makers and doers, there is always something special about personalisation. Whether you’re a knitter, woodworker, painter or poet, offer your skillset to craft bespoke creations. These should allow you to create something with special meaning that can increase the value of the donations you receive.
Local business sponsorship: Matching the interests of a community group with a local business in the same sector creates a lot of mutual benefits. Whether you need items for a raffle, discounts on things the group buys or just cash donations for projects, businesses are always looking to strengthen their ties to their local communities and people who align with what they do.
Open Days: Inviting people into your group on a trial basis is a great way to increase your membership and create donation and fundraising opportunities. If you can devise a series of interesting activities or workshops that can give people a full day of insight, they will usually be happy to donate for the opportunity to learn about something in depth.
Combined sponsored walk: Sponsored activities are often boosted by how the size of the achievement. Saying one person can walk 5 kilometres is normal. Promoting a challenge where a group will attempt to walk the equivalent of London to Paris is a lot more memorable. And it allows everyone to participate to their level, some can do more, some less, but everyone will play their part and be able to use their network to ask for sponsorship.
1-1 skills tuition: If you are a local photography club, archery group or conservation society, you can create valuable services that others will love to learn. Help people with anything from taster sessions to multi-day workshops to really learn the craft that you are an expert in, and there is a fantastic opportunity to raise sizeable donations for your group.
Event naming rights: Perhaps you have an event which has become an annual fixture in the area? If so, why not see if a local business would like to associate itself with it? It’s a great way to help local organisations get more visibility and there is zero effort involved, you just have to be sure they are the right match for your occasion. Perhaps you could even hold an auction to get interested parties to drive up the value of the opportunity between them.
Give it Up challenges: Being good is always easier when you’ve told someone about it, so they can keep you honest! Use the power of your group to help motivate each other and offer a suitable prize to the winner. Everybody will feel better for taking part, even if they don’t win!
Group twinning: Towns in different countries twin with each other, why can’t community groups? Maybe it’s a group of the same type far afield, maybe it’s more local but complementary in activity. Either way, it creates the chance for social occasions, quiz nights or challenges, all of which can be turned into fundraisers.
Best ways to fundraise at Christmas
Gift wrapping service: There is usually someone in each family who finds joy in seasonal gift wrapping, while the rest of us find it a painful chore! If you’d like to avoid the pain, why not pay a little for the privilege? In return, you’ll save money on all those yards of paper you waste, by having someone do it efficiently!
Giving the gift of helping others: The simplest way of fundraising at Christmas is to think “how many gifts do we really need?” as a family. Just re-distributing some of the Christmas budget to good causes via a family fundraising page that everyone can contribute to makes it fair and more special for everyone.
Christmas Jumper competition: It’s sometimes surprising just how competitive we can be about outdoing each other with terrible fashion choices at Christmas! But we can use that spirit to get everyone on board with a fundraising party occasion where everyone contributes to claim the bragging rights of just how far they were prepared to go to look magnificently awful!
Donations from retailers: We all spend more money to enjoy Christmas than in other months and shops want our custom. Give as you Live Online was created for this exact purpose. Make sure every pound you spend this Christmas creates a donation on your behalf from the people you buy from. It’s so easy and so effective!
Christmas Day Challenge: It’s becoming increasingly popular to shake off the Christmas lethargy with a bracing activity. Might be a dip in the sea, something snow-related (if it’s a White Christmas) or just a good long walk to burn off the lunch calories. Whatever you choose, if you can make it exciting or competitive then you can turn it into a donation raiser!
Christmas Bake Sale: Christmas is the time we all give in to naughty food treats, so it’s the best time for taking advantage of our weakness to fundraise! There are so many Christmas speciality treats that we don’t get to enjoy year-round so whether you’re a gingerbread wizard or have perfected your own mince pies, get baking and get raising!
Christmas Taxi service: If you’re not planning on doing too much partying yourself, why not offer up some time to help family members get around to their festivities? This is especially useful around the “work Christmas party” season or for the youngsters who you want to make sure get home efficiently on a cold night.
Donate your time to share experiences: Sometimes all we need to do to fundraise is put ourselves in other people’s shoes for a little while. Getting sponsored by your friends or family to volunteer, or undertake a challenge can help raise vital funds and vital awareness of the situation of others.
Design your own Christmas cards: We all want to send cards at Christmas. Why not get your family’s most creative brains to design something that helps you send a more personal family message to friends or other relations? You can simply set up an online donation page to collect your orders.
Christmas Tree decoration service: Decorating a Christmas Tree isn’t everyone’s idea of fun and some people in your community may not have the physical mobility to be able to do their own. But you can step in and raise donations by bringing your own sparkly service to people’s homes!
Christmas Tree disposal service: Don’t forget the other valuable tree-related service you can provide on the other side of New Year, getting all those decorations off again and the tree to your local recycling centre. Many people will be so glad to help to make this happen, and gladly give a donation for help.
Secret Santa: The opportunity to create random mischief through anonymous gifting is always popular. So whether it’s at the office, in a community group you’re part of, or just amongst the wider family, it’s easy to set the budget and collect a donation as part of the game. Or even create an actual “secret donation” game where the donation is the gift…
Carol singing: Christmas is a time for music to create the right spirit, and the sound of carols will always be a popular part of it. If you can gather a group who can carry a tune, then bring the gift of song to your local community and take a bucket to gather those donations in return!
Quiz of the Year: Who in your family or office has been paying the most attention to the year just gone? This is a great way to crown an annual champion and replay for a fresh set of bragging rights every year. You’ll get plenty of enthusiasm as soon as everyone has had their fill of Christmas TV!
Design a Calendar: It’s very easy to create calendar products using the best photos of family or friends from the previous year, they’re all right there on your phone! Offer a personalised service via your own fundraising page and whoever you have at least 12 pictures of could be a potential customer for a unique product only you can create.
What is Give as you Live Online?
Give as you Live Online is a FREE online fundraising platform that has raised over £24 million for UK charities just through online shopping. There are over 6,000 stores listed and over 200,000 charities available to support. Sign up, click through Give as you Live Online and raise free donations whenever you shop!