Our A-Z of fundraising ideas

Our easy fundraising ideas include fun and quirky ways to raise money for CAFOD 

Fun ways to support CAFOD this Advent and Christmas

Carol singers

Spread some festive cheer by singing loud for all to hear!

Join in an Advent challenge!

New for 2022 – Nativity Fun Run!

Nativity Fun Run

Find out more and sign up

A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z

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Advent Calendar

As we approach Christmas, open a window each day with our Family Advent Calendar. It gives you a moment each day to pause, pray and act in 24 small but significant ways through the season.

Auction

Online or in person – hold a fundraising auction! There are various sites where you can set up an online auction for charity. You could also donate a percentage (or all) of the funds raised from selling anything unwanted through a CAFOD eBay auction – especially if you can clear out a gift drawer or sell things people want for Christmas!

Autumn Walks

How about an autumn or winter walk? Organise a route and set your meeting place and time, and participants can donate £5 to join in. Have fun kicking through leaves or treading on freshly fallen snow!

B

Bake off! 

Bake some scrummy cakes to raise funds for CAFOD this Christmas

Bake some scrummy cakes to raise funds for CAFOD this Christmas

One of our most popular fundraising event ideas! You could do a stall after Mass, a stand at a school Christmas fair, or even a lunch hour in your workplace. And if you have any showstopper cakes you could auction them to the highest bidder! Share your creations on social media, and make sure you tag @CAFOD. Get your friends, family and colleagues to make things as well – some people just love the chance to bake!

C

Carol singing in the streets!

UK school children carol singing to raise money for World Gifts in a CAFOD fundraiser

Have fun singing your favourite Christmas Carol for CAFOD!

Nothing spreads Christmas cheer like live singing!

Get friends and family, your choir or classmates to go carol singing in your local area. Book a slot outside your local supermarket or train station, don Christmas hats and jumpers and warm up those vocal chords! You can use our carol sheets and carol service guide. Video your rendition of your favourite carol and share with us by tagging #CAFODcarols and @CAFOD.

Celebration

Is it your birthday or anniversary this winter? Why not set up a CAFOD Celebration Fund to mark your occasion? It’s a great way to reduce waste and material gifts and share your joy and gratitude with communities around the world.

Christmas Party

"It's the most wonderful time of the year!" As people can gather together again in homes, offices and schools this year, how about making your Christmas party a charitable celebration? Have donation boxes on your refreshments table or give out World Gifts catalogues – for a dinner you could put them on people’s place settings! You can send in your donations via our Advent Campaign.

Climate Crisis challenges 

Man juggling coins and ink cartridges

Challenge yourself to live in a more planet-friendly way and raise money for CAFOD!

A greener Christmas might mean fewer material presents, buying local and limiting your food waste. It’s also guaranteed to cost less if you focus on simpler, cleaner and greener – so you could donate the money saved to CAFOD! World Gifts will help you cut out the unwanted presents, and our ‘Go Green’ challenges are a great place to start!

Crib service

Gathering round the manger with the youngest children in your church or school community can be a really special moment – helping them connect with what Christmas really means. A collection for CAFOD can add to that understanding of sharing God’s love. Look at our Christmas and Advent fundraising resources for more ideas.

D

Dancer and Prancer

Time to put your best foot forward and do a danceathon at home. Pick a time, get your playlist ready and keep dancing! Get sponsored, post pictures and videos online or (if you’re really clever!) stream the whole thing live.

Declutter for Christmas!

Get ready for Christmas guests and celebrating by doing a declutter and sell anything in reasonable condition on eBay or a similar platform, with some or all of the proceeds going to CAFOD! Simplify your life and if you have an ‘unwanted gifts’ drawer, this is the perfect time to thin it out and sell things to people doing their Christmas shopping.

E

Emergency Food

This amazing World Gift can make a life-saving difference to a family in urgent need, by providing food to a family who have nothing to eat following an emergency. You could give this gift as a ‘thank you’ to God for your Christmas dinner this year – and put a printout on each person’s place so they can pray for those who need emergency provisions.

Exercise

Make this season of excess a season of exercise! Maybe you've taken on a personal challenge to run/cycle/walk a particular distance? How about skipping? What about walking up and down the stairs? How about salsa dancing or learning something new? Get creative, set up your JustGiving page and raise money for CAFOD. 

F

Facebook fundraising

Do you have a Facebook account? Is your birthday coming up? Instead of getting presents this year, why not ask for donations to CAFOD? You can fundraise for loads of different things through Facebook and it's simple and easy to set up.

Festivities! Join our Christmas Fun Run!

CAFOD Christmas Fun Run

Join our Christmas Fun Run

On Tuesday December 27th, you are invited to our Christmas Fun Run - run off your turkey and mince pies!

You can take part virtually wherever you are, or join in at the in person events in Liverpool and Bollington. You can even run in Christmas fancy dress! Donate or fundraise to support people around the world living in poverty.

There is an Enthuse page set up here, where you can sign up and fundraise for CAFOD. Please send us pictures or video of your adventures to events@cafod.org.uk.

Footie Fundraiser

Young people demonstrating a keepie uppie football challenge for CAFOD

Taking a football challenge!

The new season is here. Why not do a footie fundraiser? You could have a penalty shootout, dribbling challenge, or see how many 'keepie-uppies' you can do! 

Free fundraising

Sign up for Give as you live or Savoo and you can give a donation to CAFOD every time you shop!

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G

Gaming for Good

Gaming marathon for CAFOD

Gaming marathon for CAFOD

Computer games can do good! If you or someone you know plays a lot of FIFA, Minecraft or some other game, why not have a look at JustGiving, to see how they can turn all that gaming into money raised for CAFOD.

Games Day: scrabble, chess, trivial pursuits etc

With the long winter nights, why not hold a marathon board game tournament? Either pay to play or get sponsored. Take pictures or a video and post to social media, tagging @CAFOD, and invite donations to CAFOD on the JustGiving Advent Campaign.

Gingerbread Advent competition

Gingerbread is one of the most Christmassy food smells there is! As most of us have a sweet tooth, how about challenging your family and friends to a ‘Gingerbread Advent’ competition?

Christmas nativity gingerbread house

Search for simple gingerbread recipes online or in good old-fashioned cookbooks, set a target time to bake and decorate and see which team can make the best (or biggest!) Gingerbread Nativity scene? You could charge an entry fee per team or maybe even sell the resulting gingerbread goodies and donate the money to CAFOD!

H

Helpful Elves!

Children, (big and small!) why not be the washing up or laundry 'elf' for your family? You could offer to clean the house, tidy up, or cook! Charge a fee for these odd jobs and then donate it to CAFOD. What about selling i.o.u. jobs to friends and neighbours to be completed in the future, all for a donation to CAFOD?

Hula hoop contest

How many times can you spin the hula hoop? Organise a hula hoopathon! Don’t forget to get sponsored by the spin, or the length of time you keep the hoop going. 

I

Igloo building

Snow is forecast for Christmas Day 2022*! Build your own igloo, invite friends and family (who can still travel) and hold your own ‘ice hotel’ style sleepover…. or scroll to some of our other, more practical ideas…!

*in certain parts of the country only. CAFOD is not a meteorological expert.

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J

Jamboree 

Make your own jam

Make your own jam

Make and sell jam at a CAFOD jamboree! The perfect Christmas present – homemade, consumable, and delicious. Our downloadable guide is full of ideas, tips, and a recipe that will make sure your event is delicious! You could drop off people's purchases in safe, socially distanced deliveries.

Joke-athon 

But wait, there’s myrrh! Have your friends in stitches with an online Christmas joke-athon. All you need is a webcam and an internet connection. Get sponsored! It can be competitive, or see how long can you keep your friends laughing? If the jokes are really bad, make them pay a fee to leave.

K

Karaoke 

A Christmas party favourite: not just for extroverts! There are numerous sites which offer online Karaoke, and you can join with others as you do it. Donate to take part or watch – or even place bets – who will be the best or worse singer? Who’ll be the first to crack out a Mariah Carey number? Bonus points for the Pogues. 

Keep clean kit illustration

Keep clean kit World Gift

Keep Clean Kit

Help vulnerable families amid challenging circumstances with the Keep clean kit World Gift. You can provide a family displaced from their home this Christmas with soap, washing powder and reusable, locally-made facemasks – a small way to help families keep peace of mind during unstable times.

Kite-flying competition

Let’s go fly a kite! As the windy weather sets in, challenge your family and friends to make a kite. You could even use some fallen autumn tree leaves to decorate the tail.

Head out to a country park and see which kite can fly the highest, fly for the longest time - or just not fly away! Charge an amount for each kite entered and let the competition begin.

Knitting for justice!

If you love to knit, crochet or stitch, there are sew many ways to turn your yarn to good. In this cold time of year, sell your creations at a Christmas fete, in a stall after church, or online. Or how about teaching people your skill: set up a ‘knit and natter’ group with small donations for joining to help people round the world learn skills too? 

L

Lego making competition

Gather together all the Lego in your house and challenge your family to get creative. Who can make the most recognisable landmark, or biggest building? Pay to take part or get sponsored per brick or size of building!

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M

Marathon or Half Marathon

2023 is on the horizon now, and maybe you’re considering a New Year's Resolution to run a Marathon (or a half!) We would love you to run for CAFOD! Check out our Sponsored challenge events, challenge yourself to complete an event and ask for sponsorship. How far can you run and how much can you raise?

Mince Pies and Mulled Wine

Mince pies and mulled wine

Serve some festive treats this Christmas to raise funds for CAFOD!

What can be more Christmassy?! Whether you’re hosting a party at home, laying on festive refreshments after a Mass or carol service, or serving treats at your Christmas fete – check out our handy guide.

Put CAFOD collecting boxes on your trays or tables with suggested donations amounts, and your festive fare will help those struggling even more than usual this Christmas.

Download file Mince Pies and Mulled Wine Event Guide 2022 (pdf, 3mb)

Hold an 'in-person' mince pies and mulled wine event!

N

Nativity Fun Run

Join us on 10 December for a Christmas Fun Run like no other! Where else could you dress up as a star and go for a jog with a donkey and King Herod? Sign up to run, walk, roll or stroll the most festive 5k out there and invite your friends and family to join in the story of Christmas on London’s Clapham Common for a morning of crafts, music, gingerbread and a little bit of running.

Nativity Play

This beautiful, hand-crafted nativity triptych is available to buy in the CAFOD shop.

Unleash your inner sheep! Use our CAFOD Nativity Play script to bring the Christmas story to life for a new generation. Sell tickets, or hold a collection as people leave, with CAFOD collection tools like contactless and giving lanyards. What about including mince pies and mulled wine?

Download file CAFOD's Nativity Play 2022 (pdf, 5mb)

Join in the wonder of the Nativity with our very own script.

O

Online fundraising

If you’re still finding life quite restricted with health and travel concerns, don’t worry - almost anything you can think of can become an online fundraiser. Artists, knitters, runners, bakers, quizzers and more keep finding ways to raise money for CAFOD. Choose your activity, make it a bit of a challenge, or sell what you make. Get creative, head over to JustGiving to set up a fundraising page and let your friends and family know what you are up to!

Oranges!

Christingles are a wonderful activity to do with children this time of year. All you need are oranges, ribbon, cocktail sticks, sweets or raisins, and candles – foil makes a good candle holder. Bring light into the darkness and hold a service with the collection going to CAFOD’s Advent appeal

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P

Pantomime!

If you’ve got a flair for the dramatic, tis the season to say ‘oh no it isn’t’! Put on a show and sell the tickets and refreshments in aid of CAFOD

Presents

As we prepare for Christmas, presents loom large on the to do list – but you can minimise the influx of stuff in this season of plenty, and make the world a little brighter, with CAFOD's World Gifts. With new gifts this year there’ll be something even for that hard to buy person – and you can get a bit closer to the true spirit of Christmas.

Q

Quiet in the house!

This Christmas holidays, give your parents or carers a gift of peace by keeping silent for a day with this popular fundraising activity. Get sponsored – you might find people will pay good money to see this! Download your sponsorship form - and if you do it in a group with siblings or friends, you can fine each other for talking!

Quizzes 

Have fun and raise money for CAFOD - hold your own CAFOD QUIZ!

How about a seasonal CAFOD Quiz? We have loads of online resources to help you hold your own quiz and raise money for CAFOD – ask for a donation per entrant.

R

Raffles 

Everyone loves a raffle! Get friends and family or local businesses to donate prizes, and then invite people to take part in an online raffle. Remember to give people their prizes (top tip), and look out for our CAFOD Raffle

Reverse Advent Calendar

Turn the culture of chocolate Advent calendars on its head and give something back each day instead. With friends or family, you could give donations of items to local homelessness charities or foodbanks, along with some gifts to help your global family too – support our Advent appeal with a daily or weekly small amount. Follow our Advent calendar for inspiration!

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S

Screen fasting

You can end up watching way more screens as the nights draw in – or you could resist, and make your willpower raise funds for good! Ask for sponsorship for you or your family to have a break from social media, gaming online or watching your favourite TV shows. And if you break your challenge, pay a fine to CAFOD!

Secret Santa

If you give secret Santa gifts in a group or family, how about all agreeing to make those gifts really spread Christmas love this year? It could be World Gifts (we have lots for under £10!) tailored to each person, or you could club together to give something you all care about like a greenhouse for gardeners. Gift giving with real heart.

Sing your heart out!

Carol singing lifts everyone’s spirits. Get out into your local community with our carol sheets (coming soon!) collecting tins (ask your local CAFOD representative) – or our contactless ways to give! Book a time to sing outside your local supermarket or train station, or go wassailing round the village or streets, - and spread some joy now that we can sing together again. Check out our handy guide for more tips:

Download file Carol Singing Guide 2022 (pdf, 2mb)

Useful information to hold a carol singing event

Sponsored walk 

Going for a walk over Christmas and New Year is a great idea, especially as many of us will overindulge and need the exercise! Challenge yourself to walk a certain number of miles and get sponsored for it. Our downloadable guide has information about how you can turn your walk into an event.

T

Treasure hunt

Create a treasure hunt around the house (or garden), with clues and challenges to see which of your family can find the treasure horde of chocolate treats (or anything else!). You can charge per entrant. Remember to Order your chocolate coins from World Gifts.

U

Ultra Challenge Series 

Take on an Ultra Challenge!

Take on an Ultra Challenge for CAFOD!

Does 25km sound like a long way? How about 50km or 100? If you fancy a challenge (walking, running or jogging), there are events in different parts of the country, as well as virtually. Have a look at the full list - you can sign up for as many as you like. Just pick CAFOD as your charity and get fundraising!

Upcycling

Create sock puppets, craft key holders or cook up some candles! Go online for inspiration, get crafty, and sell your creations for a suggested donation - just in time for Christmas shopping lists. Post pictures and videos on social media so we can all enjoy them.

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V

Virtual Fundraising

Almost anything can be a virtual fundraiser: exercise, fasting, challenges. Think of what your friends would be surprised or impressed to see you doing and set up a Virtual Fundraiser. Visit our page on JustGiving and see how easy it is to promote your activity to friends, inviting them to donate.

W

Winter walks

See ‘Autumn walks’ above – it's the same principle, but colder!

Don't forget your sponsorship form

World Gifts

World Gifts are CAFOD's alternative charity gifts that transform lives and are the true spirit of Christmas giving! You can buy gifts online, or fundraise for a group gift with friends, family, your parish, or school.

Work towards buying a community water supply, or even a health clinic! There's a JustGiving page you can use to fundraise as a community: just pick a gift, ask people to donate or raise money from your events.

World Gifts

World Gifts

X

X-box tournament

X-box and other games consoles are available, and you can use any of them to host a virtual fundraising day or night or both for CAFOD. Go to JustGiving for more info. 

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Y

Youth Fundraising

This Christmas tree decoration comes free with a Trees for Life World Gift and includes tree seeds for you to plant!

Make some decorations this Advent!

Maybe you belong to a parish, school, or activity-based youth group? You could check out our ‘Festive Make and Create’ ideas and help spread some extra festive cheer.

Whether you enjoy baking, crafting, knitting or painting – have fun, be Christmassy and raise valuable funds for CAFOD!

Yuletide cheer

Christmas can be expensive. Bring it back to what really it means this year: have a conversation with whoever you spend it with about what really matters, and how you can save money, time and emotional energy by simplifying and focusing on what’s important. Then, see what you’ll have saved and donate it where it will actually matter – to share Christmas love with people fighting real hardship this year.

Z

Zzz

Still looking for fun, sponsorship ideas? You've come to the end of our list! If you've tried one of our suggestions, we'd love to hear how you got on and if you've tried more than one, you're due for a well-earned rest. Zzz 

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Thank you so much for your support during this difficult time

It makes such a difference towards helping creating a world without poverty and injustice. 

You can find more help and advice in our How to fundraise guide and on our health and safety pages. If you'd like a sponsorship form you can download it here.

We'd love to hear from you about your fundraising as well - tweet your pictures to @CAFOD or email events@cafod.org.uk

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