Signing up to volunteer abroad is a wonderful experience. You’re probably feeling excited about the trip, a bit nervous about what will come, and generally eager to get going! But you’re also probably wondering how you’re going to go about the fundraising. We believe fundraising shouldn’t be a chore, so here are some ideas to have fun while raising money!


If you’re working in an office, ask your office manager to host a dress down day, where each student pays £5 to your fundraising efforts to wear their own clothes. Or be even more wild, and host a fancy dress day at university or in your office. Be brave.


Use your interests and talents to make something to sell. This could be anything you like, such as vegetables you grow in your garden, cakes and cookies you bake, or handmade jewelry. Set up shop near heavily populated areas, such as shopping malls or university campuses, and get selling! We have seen many of our volunteers set up outside their lectures weekly and raise huge amounts. Cake is always welcomed in an office. It could also be themed food, to match your country of destination. 


So, your cooking skills aren’t going to land you a spot on Master Chef anytime soon. That’s no problem! Many restaurants, like Krispy Kreme, will sell you food at a discounted price that you can resell to support your fundraiser. Others will work with you to host percentage nights, where a percentage of the sales from that night go towards your fundraiser. Your good cause will give people an excuse to indulge in their favorite foods and raise money for your trip! 


Another food-related idea, but what can we say? Nothing brings people together like good food and friends! Bring your neighbours and friends together for a potluck meal. This could be anything from a barbecue on a summer evening to a traditional afternoon tea. Have every guest bring a dish and £5 for a ticket. This keeps your costs low and your income high!


Doing quick chores for friends and neighbours for a small fee can quickly add up and get you on your way to volunteering. And despite popular belief, some chores can actually be fun! Become the new neighbourhood dog walker and make some money while spending the day playing in the park with pups. We have seen volunteers clean other student rooms for £10 and very quickly got to their target goal.


Hold a football, netball or basketball tournament in your neighborhood! Have people get teams together and pay an entrance fee to participate. Get local stores to donate food and drinks for all the players and prizes for the winners.


If you’re the sporty type, have people sponsor you on some type of physical activity. Set a length to run, bike, or swim and have donors sponsor you per mile, kilometer, etc. You can also piggy-bag onto other sporting events, and raise money for your trip, like a ToughMudder, or 10km run, or the Three Peaks Challenge.

If serious sports aren’t your thing, get a bit more creative with it! Host a solo dance marathon or aerobics marathon, complete with headband and legwarmers, and have people sponsor you for however long you can keep it going.

You can also get your friends involved! Having your friends join you makes the experience more fun and motivates you to keep going. Plus, if you have generous friends, their sponsorships can also go towards your volunteer experience.


Of course, this is no new idea, but everyone has junk piled up somewhere! And as they say, one man’s trash is another man’s trip to India. So, pack it all up, set up shop one Saturday, and see the cash flow in. You can also use Facebook Marketplace or Ebay and start that bug clear out you have always wanted to get done.


Another way to profit off your talents! Got the perfect warrior pose? Host a morning yoga class in the park and charge £5 to participate. More on the artistic side? Offer up painting or photography lessons for an afternoon.


Host a karaoke night at your home or local pub. Have all participants pay an entrance fee (and possibly add in a free drink to build up their courage). Also see if you can get local businesses to donate prizes for the best, or worst, performance.


This final idea is not for the faint of heart. Set a target goal and have friends, family, classmates,  and colleagues donate their loose change until it is met. What happens when that goal is met? Well that’s up to you; or if you’re feeling particularly risky. 

Whether it be dying your hair (even chopping it off), wearing an embarrassing outfit to work, playing janitor for the day, or some other unpleasant task, it’s up to you to complete it once the goal is met. This also works particularly well if you find a teacher or boss that is game for bearing this burden (and it gets you off the hook!) 

Remember that this isn’t a definitive list of all the ways to fundraise so get creative, have fun with it, and happy fundraising!

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