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By allowing your guests and donors to bid straight from their smartphones, you can drastically increase engagement with your auction. Making it easier and faster to bids translates to more bids, meaning more competition and ultimately more revenue for your organization. With mobile bidding, you open up your auction to much wider audiences, essential for engaging supporters online and growing your base of support going forward.

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Events play a huge role in connecting people to causes.

And 1 in 4 Australians have attended an event supporting a particular cause within the last year. So, how can you come up with fundraising event idea that will inspire participation and donations? Competitive or sporting-style events make great fundraisers. They allow you to leverage two major motivators that encourage giving — competitiveness and camaraderie.

Fundraising is more fun with friends! These events could be used to entice your donors to get out and meet new people, or you can offer group registration to encourage social groups to come together for a fun new activity. Here are more than 20 ideas for social or recreational activities for your next fundraiser. Perfect for schools or causes that support the local community, here are eight fundraising ideas to host a larger scale community event.

Here are 18 ideas for a fundraising foodie event. Give your youngest supporters a chance to get involved with five youth-based fundraising ideas. Use technology to host your fundraising event online, or to expand your event beyond the day-of with these virtual fundraising ideas. The answer could be as simple as finding the right technology. Learn how technology can be used to reduce your resources and maximise donations without blowing your budget! Make yours stand out with a costume requirement or unusual location.

Unique ways to fundraise (that actually work)

Cycling or Triathlon event — Did you know that cyclists make great fundraisers? Dedicated cyclists and runners are typically high income earners and socially well connected. Turn an otherwise competitive event into a social activity — like an opportunity to enjoy great outdoors with a 5km walk in a scenic area.

Participants can still ask to be sponsored for their efforts, but there are no winners or recorded times. Ideal for family-friendly events or less challenging courses. Set up the rules and get the crowd riled to bet on their favourite contenders. Paddle race — Host a standup paddleboard contest and let beach bystanders place bets on the winners.

School games tournament — Create a competition featuring games that you played in primary school — everyone knows the rules! Think kickball or foursquare. Aussie Rules competition — From a full game of Aussie rules football to handball competitions or most goals kicked, there are plenty of fun competitions that can be had for AFL fans. Ideal for events held in September. Players can play to enter or agree to donate an amount for every tag they lose. Tennis tournament — Host round-robin tennis matches with doubles teams, and sell refreshments to participants and viewers.

Home run derby — Take a cue from Major League Baseball and hold a home-run-hitting contest or a challenge for the most runs in a friendly game of cricket.

Unique fundraising ideas that actually work

Charge for entry or take bets on the winner. The ultimate winner takes home a keg. Climbing challenge — Rent a climbing wall or team up with a local climbing gym to hold a race to the top. Trivia night — Host a trivia night at a local bar and have participants pay to play. For extra credit, the bar can donate a portion of proceeds of drinks and food sold. Stair climbing contest — Find a venue with a lot of stairs, like a stadium or skyscraper.

Have participants recruit sponsors. Buddy run — The buddy being your dog. Like a canine-friendly 5k.

Great for fundraisers benefiting animals! Social and recreational fundraising ideas Fundraising is more fun with friends! Polar bear plunge — Participants gather sponsors for their dive into icy cold water. You provide the warm blankets and hot chocolate. You can set up informational and merch booths in the bowling alley, too.

Casino night — Take the gambling up a notch with multiple card games, costumes Wild West theme, anyone?

Starting your first fundraiser? here’s how to ask for donations

Dunk tank — Rent a dunk tank and charge participants for a chance to dunk willing local celebrities. Game night — Rent arcade machines or old Atari, Sega, or Nintendo games for a throwback game night! Yoga with animals — From goats to kittens, animal-themed yoga classes are all the rage right now.

Team up with a local animal shelter or petting zoo who will provide the animals to help spread awareness of their own cause. Activity marathon — Dream up an activity volunteers can try to do for 24 straight hours, and stream it live or get the local new to cover it. Dance marathons are the most popular variation. Skating event — Host a roller skating or ice skating event and charge an admission fee. Workout class fundraiser — Ask a hot local workout spot to host and help promote your fundraiser.

8 incredible tips to ask for donations in person

Fashion show — Got a catwalk? Got models? Got some haute couture? All you need is floor space, benefit t-shirts and a few staff members willing to put themselves out there and be goofy. Auction a dinner date — This trope works great if the date in question is someone well known or beloved in the community.

Think outside the box on this one. Get creative with the auction items. Think about experiences instead of things. Perhaps you have a donor willing to grant access to his holiday home for the weekend, for instance.

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Treasure hunt — Use an app like Actionbound to set up a treasure hunt that combines a real life experience with augmented reality on a device. Pamper-yourself festival — Curate a selection of stalls offering things like luxury beauty treatments, chair massage, makeovers, wellness items, and clothing from local boutiques. Line a wall with boxes wrapped in colourful tissue paper. Event-goers can purchase a box for a chance to win a prize or voucher to use at the event such as a drink ticket.

Singles charity night — Bring dating hopefuls together with activities that tie directly back to your cause: making dog toys for a local animal shelter or cooking meals for the homeless, for instance. Christmas in July — We can only dream of a white Christmas here in Australia… or you can celebrate it early with a kitschy Christmas themed event in July. Morning dance party — An alcohol-free dance party with fancy mocktails made from energising fresh-squeezed juice.

Themed costume party — Forget about the fancy gala construct. Not everyone wants to wear a starched shirt. Instead, consider a costume theme.

Cup party — Host a cocktail party and have participants buy cups at the door, at a wildly inflated price to be donated to your cause. Silent disco — No need to hire a professional DJ or performer. Simply plan a killer playlist and provide each attendee with a heet when they enter the door. Sky lantern send off — Host an evening celebration where partygoers make a wish on a paper lantern, light a flame inside, and send it off in the sky. Venue-specific dance performance — Dancers perform an originally choreographed piece that tells the story of your venue, which may or may not be aligned to your cause.

A ticket purchase gives donors the chance to watch the show and learn more about that particular farm. Choose your own imaginative variation based on your event venue and organisation. Theatre — Consider partnering with a local theatre company willing to provide the venue, equipment, props, and costumes.

Or, arrange to have profits from one of their normal performances go to your cause. Have an art opening where event-goers buy a ticket to attend, than auction off the photos. Craft fair — Get a bunch of artisans on board and charge tickets at the door. This idea is perfect for the holidays, when people are keen to buy unique, original gifts for their loved ones. Haircut party — Find a local salon whose stylists are willing to donate their time for just one day to giving haircuts.

Customers pay what they think their haircut is worth, and all of the money goes to your cause.

Film screening — Is there a documentary related to your cause? Host a night at the movies replete with popcorn and candy. Battle of the bands — Invite some local guitar heroes and give your donors a chance to support your cause and enjoy the performance. Talent search — How many of us have rock-n-roll dreams? Karaoke contest — Recruit a local celebrity or two to judge participants willing to put themselves out there, The Voice-style.

Host a gig — Ask your talented donors to donate their talent or even host their own gig. Community-oriented fundraising ideas Perfect for schools or causes that support the local community, here are eight fundraising ideas to host a larger scale community event.

Community Fete — A carnival or fete is always a fun way to raise funds. You can invest whatever level of overhead feels appropriate. Skip the antique carousels and make up your own games with homemade booths and costumes for a lower cost and more personalised event experience. Neighbourhood street party — This is a great way to make money for a local cause or a recent disaster that affects the community. Have neighbours donate food, drinks and lawn chairs. Laneway party — If you have a venue that opens onto a laneway, see if you could take over the whole lane and spill into the street for maximum impact and capacity.

Our new persons


The internet — and even phones to some extent — have produced a certain amount of anonymity when it comes to asking for donations and making contributions.


Asking for donations is no different.


Few things build hype, boost event ticket sales, and increase donations like a raffle.


September 30, By Snowball Fundraising No comments yet.


Events play a huge role in connecting people to causes.


Thank you to everyone who is thinking of us.