Alternative ideas for charity fundraising in a virtual world

Charity fundraising is a great way to boost morale and build team engagement, all whilst supporting those in need. It’s also great at promoting your employer brand and helping local communities.

Some of the most popular fundraising activities to take place within a workplace include

  • dress down/fancy dress days

  • cakes sales

  • quizzes

  • physical challenges (runs, walks, cycles etc.)

However, now that coronavirus has changed where and how we work, what does this mean for our much loved (and much valued) charity fundraising activities from the office? How can we access those ‘feel good’ vibes, help charities and stay safe?

Bridging the fundraising gap

A report published in June identified a £10bn shortfall which UK charities would need to manage. The £10bn gap is made up of a £6.4bn loss of income for the second half of 2020 and an additional £3.7bn in costs to meet the increased service demand. Smaller, local charities could be facing bankruptcy as a result.

Therefore, we’ve pulled together a list of potential fundraising activities you could organise to bring your team together for a good cause.

Fundraising ideas for a virtual world

Team sport events

When the Virgin Money London Marathon (the world’s biggest one-day fundraising event) was cancelled due to the UK being in lockdown, the organisers instead started the “2.6 campaign.” They invited people to complete any sort of activity based around the numbers 2.6 and 26 and then donate to their chosen charity.

Since then lots of charities have found ways to incorporate sport or exercise into socially distanced challenges. The STARS Appeal held their Walk for Wards wherever people could walk and Wessex Heartbeat have started a Step-tember challenge.

Other larger running events like the Great South Run have had more time to prep and organise virtual solo runs.

Virtual quizzes and Murder Mystery challenges

Many teams have used video calls for team meetings, and this could also be used for hosting a team quiz. Some charities may be running their own so you can simply enter a team, help raise money for the cause and compete against other local businesses. Marie Curie ran a series of Celebrity Hosted Quizzes during the height of lockdown.

Virtual Murder Mystery events have also proven popular and can be organised exclusively for a team or organisation. The team behind Murdered for Money have adapted their business and now have a host of virtual murder mystery nights lined up.

Dress down

A sponsored dress down or fancy dress could still work virtually – perhaps have a theme and award a prize for the best dressed?! If staff are still working from make sure there’s a team meeting via video so you can see everyone’s efforts. Apps such as PayPal could assist with collecting the donation money for charity.

Online auctions or raffles

If you can access some great prizes you could organise a raffle or auction in aid of your chosen charity. Perhaps you could invite your clients or suppliers to get involved too? It could also encompass a team building exercise or inter-team competition by see which teams can find great prizes to raffle off!

Skill swap

Financial support is one thing, but charities may be lacking in certain skills or volunteers. Given the current social distancing rules this idea may need more planning and may be more limited in numbers, but it’s worth considering if your staff have skills that they would benefit from having access to over the next few months.

Virtual cake sales

We've recently been invited to a Macmillan Coffee Morning hosted by Tidworth & District Chamber of Commerce (which we are members of) and we'll be joining a virtual coffee morning with Chamber members which raising money for Macmillan cancer support - they have free fundraising kits if you'd like to host your own and lots of ideas on how to hold a socially distanced and safe event.

Our event takes place on Friday 25 September - check their Facebook page for details on how to join.

Saturday 5 September is International Day of Charity so why not check out what your favourite charities are doing and see if there’s any activity to get involved with? We'd love to hear about it!

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