Fundraising A to Z

Do you want to raise money but aren't sure how? Scroll through our A to Z of fundraising ideas, activities and challenges for some inspiration.

If you have any queries about fundraising, you can contact us by emailing [email protected] or by calling us on 020 7803 1123.


A

ABSEIL – Are you a bit of an adrenaline junkie or keen to challenge yourself? Abseiling is an exhilarating way of raising money and we even have places available for a 165ft SAS-style drop from the Forth Rail Bridge.

AMAZON SMILE – Shop on Amazon through Amazon Smile and see 0.5% of what you spend on eligible purchases donated to the Mental Health Foundation.

ARTS AND CRAFTS – Get arty! You could produce and sell art of your own or even hold a community arts and crafts event to encourage people to bring out their creative side. And, as we know, engaging with the arts can help improve your mental health.

AUCTION – Charity auctions can be a low-cost, low-risk way to fundraise, especially if you are able to write to organisations to get prizes donated to you – this is sure to get the money rolling in!


B

BAKE SALE – Who doesn't love cake? (Well, some people, but most of us do!) Bake sales always draw the crowds in and raise more than you'd think. You could even make an event of it by holding a Tea & Talk to get those around you talking about mental health. We have a selection of recipes available for you if you're not sure what to bake.

BINGO – Get everyone in the competitive spirit by hosting your own bingo night. Charge per ticket and you could even try to get some raffle prizes to increase your donations.

BIRTHDAY – Instead of asking for gifts on your birthday, why not ask for donations for charity instead? Set up a fundraising page on Facebook and then share with your friends.

BUSKING – Grab your violin, guitar or even tuba and go busking to raise money for charity. Just be sure to check your local council's first as you may need a licence. Check out our MHF Live fundraising initiative to see more about how you can use music to raise money.


C

CALENDAR – A charity calendar is a great way to raise money... but do you dare to go nude??

CHARITY BALL – Hold a classy charity event with great food, some live music, a silent auction, etc. – you have free reign to make it as brilliant as you can.

CHRISTMAS – Get festive and decorate and sell Christmas biscuits. Or you could even ask for donations instead of presents!

CURRY & CHAAT – One of the Mental Health Foundation's community fundraising events. Get together with friends, family or colleagues to enjoy a curry together and have a chat (or chaat if you'll pardon the pun) because talking with others is a great way to better your mental health.

CYCLE – Take on a cycling challenge. You can sign up to one of our cycling events or even organise your own. Whether you're a  cycling novice or a seasoned pro, there is a fundraising challenge for you. 

For some cycling inspiration, read Elisa's incredible empowering story.


D

DISCO – Grab your dancing shoes and let loose! Ask your local community hall if you can host it there or hold it in your own home.


E

EBAY – Sell your stuff on eBay and donate the profits to the Mental Health Foundation. You could also sign up to Give as you Live, which sees a donation made to charity with each of your eBay purchases.

EGGS – A bit of a quirky one...! Host an egg painting party, donate what you would have spent on Easter eggs to charity, hold an egg and spoon race or host an Easter egg hunt party – the options are limitless!


F

FACEBOOK – Set up a Facebook fundraising page and share with your friends. Be sure to also check out our top tips to see how to make the most of your page.

Bazz has done two Facebook fundraisers for us, read his story here.

FANCY DRESS – Holding a mufti day at school or a dress down Friday in the office is a fun way to go about fundraising. Pick a theme and get everyone to chip in a pound or two to take part.

FESTIVE FUN – Make the most of Easter, Christmas, Hallowe'en and more by organising festive-themed events to raise money. You could go carolling in December, hold an Easter-themed Tea & Talk, ask for donations at Eid instead of gifts, or do whatever else you can think of!

FOOTBALL – The nation's game. We just love football in this country so organising a charity match or setting up a five-a-side tournament is a great way to fundraise. Sell tickets, get teams to pay to play, or you could even throw a post-match party with a football memorabilia auction.


G

GIVE AS YOU LIVE – Sign up for Give as you Live. It's a free and easy way to raise money for the Mental Health Foundation, just by shopping online in over 4,300 stores.

GIVE IN MEMORY – Donating in memory of a loved one is a positive way to celebrate their life. You could set up a JustGiving page, hold a collection at a funeral, or make a one-off donation.

GIVE IT UP – Give up a bad habit or stop drinking, eating meat or dairy, or even talking! Ask for sponsorships from people to help you give up something, whether it be for a month or more.

GOLF – Hold a golf tournament at your local club and get everyone to pay an entry fee for charity. You could even try to convince the club to waive your green fees to make sure that as much money as possible goes to the Mental Health Foundation.

GRANTS – Maybe your work, your family, your school or your community group give out donations to causes important to them – if you do let us know and we can tell you lots about what we do.

GREEN RIBBON – The green ribbon is the international symbol of mental health. Spread awareness and raise money by buying boxes of pins to sell in your office, school, university, social club, or wherever else you can. You can reimburse yourself at the end then donate all the profits.


H

HAIRCUT/HEAD SHAVE – Cut your hair off or even go for a full head shave. You can donate the hair to the Little Princess Trust and support the Mental Health Foundation through your fundraising, like our fabulous supporter Stephanie who braved the chop and cut off 20 inches of her much-loved hair...

Find out more about Stephanie's haircut fundraiser

'HOW TO...' GUIDES – Purchase hard copies of our publications, including our popular 'How to...' guides, to learn how to better understand and look after your mental health.


I

INSTAGRAM – Add a Mental Health Foundation donation sticker to your Instagram story to ask for donations from your followers.

INTERNATIONAL – Host a global party with foods from around the world, challenge yourself to visit a record number of countries in a year, learn a new language – the world is your oyster!

IRONMAN – When it comes to endurance events, an Ironman triathlon is as tough as it gets. Test yourself over a 2.4-mile swim, 112-mile cycle, followed by a marathon on foot. Visit the Ironman website to find an event then set up a JustGiving page to get your fundraising started.


J

JUMBLE SALE – Do you have a big pile of stuff sitting in your cupboard, garage or loft that you don't use or need? Why not hold a jumble sale and raise a bit of cash for charity?

JUMP ROPE – Do a month-long skipping challenge to see if you can jump rope for 15 minutes a day. Or host a jump rope competition where competitors pay to take part and the winner gets a prize.

JUSTGIVING – Whatever you do to fundraise, whether its simply through raising awareness or by doing an event, setting up and sharing a JustGiving page is an easy way to publicise what your doing and why, and enables people to donate quickly and easily online.


K

KNITTING – Sell your own knitted items or challenge yourself to learn how to knit! You could even host a knitting party and donate the knitted items to the maternity ward of a hospital.


L

LEAVE A LEGACY – Leaving a gift in your will is a fantastic way to support us in our mission to ensure that future generations are able to thrive through understanding, protecting and sustaining their mental health.

LIVESTREAM – The gaming industry is now bigger than the film industry, so if you love to game, you're not alone! Livestreaming is therefore an amazing way to fundraise – get a Twitch stream going and get your followers to donate. The more interactive the better, as our committed supporter Tom found...

Read more about how Tom made his livestream a success 


M

MARATHON – In 490 BC, the Greek messenger Philippides ran 26.2 miles in what is believed to be the first marathon. More than 2,500 years later, this journey continues to be honoured as one of the greatest fundraising challenges. Is it one for you?

MHF LIVE – Our newest community fundraising event. Support good mental health through the power of music. You can organise a gig, an album listening party, a music quiz... there are simply so many options! So let's raise awareness, raise money and raise the roof for mental health!

MOUNTAIN – From Everest to Snowdon, climbing a mountain is a fantastic challenge and a brilliant way to raise money. You can also sign up to the Mental Health Foundation's bespoke Kilimanjaro Trek in 2020.

MOVEMBER – Support the Mental Health Foundation in November by getting your friends, family and colleagues to sponsor you to grow a moustache.

MOVIE MARATHON – Invite your friends and family for a movie marathon. Get others to sponsor you as you watch Harry Potter back-to-back-to-back-to-back-to-back-to-back-to-back-to back (yep, eight films is a lot!) or you could even get people to donate to have their favourites picked.


N

NEW BEGINNINGS – Incorporate fundraising into your wedding day, baby shower or birthday. You could also give something up in January as a new year's resolution. Try setting up a Facebook fundraising page to get people to sponsor you.


O

OFFICE – Get the office involved and host a bake sale, dress-down day or wellbeing week at work to spread mental health awareness and fundraise for the Mental Health Foundation. You could even get your workplace to become a corporate partner.

ONLINE SHOPPING – Sign up for free to Give as you Live to start raising when you shop at over 4,300 stores at no extra cost to you! And be sure to select the Mental Health Foundation as your chosen charity on Amazon Smile.

OVERSEAS TREKS - We have bespoke treks every year, in 2019 it was China and in 2020 it is Kilimanjaro. We also have other treks you can join.

Read why Michelle is trekking Kilimanjaro for us here


P

PAYROLL GIVING – Payroll Giving is an HM Revenue and Customs scheme that allows you to give a regular, tax-free donation to the Mental Health Foundation, through your employer.

PICK 'N' MIX – Pick a few different ideas that you like and host your own fundraising day/week. 

POKER NIGHT – A poker night is a fun way to get together with friends to raise money for charity. You don't need a permit or licence to hold a poker night for charity as long as you abide by the statuatory requirements outlined by the Gambling Commission.


Q

QUILT-MAKING – Love to sew? Get friends, family and colleagues to sponsor you to make a mental health themed quilt.

QUIZ – Whether you want to do a pub quiz, an office quiz, one at university… there are so many things you can do! Quizzes are simply one of the best ways to get people together and a brilliant way to raise money.


R

RAFFLE – Raffles are a great option as you can incorporate them into a larger event or do a virtual raffle and ask local shops for prizes. Hairdressers and salons are always a good bet.

RUN – Whether running is a way for you to get fit or already a central part of your life, it is a perfect way to fundraise. From a 5K to a half marathon, a full marathon to a 100km Ultra Challenge, there is a running event there for you.


S

SAVOO – Use Savoo Search, Save and Raise as your online shopping platform. It's free to do as Savoo donates on your behalf!

SCHOOL – School is a great place to fundraise – host a mufti day, a football tournament, a charity fete or disco, or even wash the teachers' cars for cash. You can even make a week of it by holding a Wellbeing Week. The more creative you can be with your fundraising the better!

SKYDIVE – Whether you are facing your fears or feeding your appetite for excitement, the incredible adrenaline rush as you jump from 10,000 feet at more than 100mph is an amazing experience and a fantastic way to fundraise. It's also a great way to raise vital awareness about mental health, as our 2018 skydiver Jonny found...

Read about how Jonny's skydive got kids talking about mental health 

SPONSORED SILENCE – Are you normally a chatterbox? Why not do a sponsored silence – you might be surprised how many people sponsor you!

SWIM – Take on a long-distance swim solo or get together with friends to make it a relay. Either way, swimming challenges are a great way to fundraise. 


T

TEA AND TALK – Our flagship community fundraiser, Tea & Talk has now been going on for 10 years. Sit down with friends, family, colleagues or even complete strangers and have a natter for mental health. We have plenty of tips as well as some great resources and recipes to make your event a success!

TREK – Whether you go overseas or do it in the UK, trekking is a brilliant way to challenge yourself physically and fundraise in the process. Check out some of our overseas treks, browse through our UK challenges for something a bit closer to home, or you can even organise a challenge of your own.


U

UNIVERSITY – You can sell Krispy Kremes on campus, host a live music night, or do a range of other mental health awareness fundraising events – university is a great place to campaign for good mental health for all!


V

VIRTUAL RACE – Virtual events are becoming more and more popular and are therefore an innovative and fun way to fundraise. Run a mile a day for a month or challenge friends to see who can be first to cycle 1,000 miles. Be creative and use technology to inspire those around you.

VLOG – Social media can be a great force for good and by vlogging about your experiences with mental health problems or about your training for a physical fundraising challenge, you can raise both money and awareness for mental health.

VOLLEYBALL – Get together with friends and hold a volleyball tournament to raise money for the Mental Health Foundation.


W

WALK Walking is fundamentally good for your mental health. This therefore makes it a wonderful fundraising challenge. You can organise a group walk, a multi-day walk or even go big like our brilliant supporter Ben who decided to trek 1,236 miles from John o' Groats in Scotland to Land's End in Cornwall...

Read Ben's story about what made him take on this amazing walk

WAXING – Get people to sponsor you to have your legs, chest, or other parts waxed for charity!

WEDDING – Celebrate your special day by donating to the Mental Health Foundation. Order place-setting cards, ask guests to make a donation instead of giving gifts, or just hold a simple collection at the ceremony – there are lots of ways to support us.

WELLBEING WEEK – Host a week-long campaign focusing on mindfulness and wellbeing. You can easily incorporate other fundraising events into your Wellbeing Week like Tea & Talk! Although we have focused this fundraiser on schools, it's great for universities and workplaces too.

WORKPLACE – Hold an event at work or even look into a corporate partnership with the Mental Health Foundation.


X

XBOX – Sell it, host a livestream on Twitch, hold a FIFA party with your friends... the console has endless opportunities to have some fun whilst fundraising.


Y

YEAR-LONG CHALLENGE – Give something up for a year or take on a challenge where you do something every day for a year.

YOGA – You don’t have to be flexible to try out a yoga session. Known for being great for the mind, why not hold a yogathon or ask your yoga teacher to donate the proceeds from one session to the Mental Health Foundation?


Z

ZUMBATHON – Get your trainers on and dance up a sweat in a Zumba class. Host a huge Zumba party to raise money for charity.