You may be aware that, like many other voluntary sector organisations, Nottingham Counselling Service’s core services receive no regular funding, meaning we rely on private donations to allow us to continue delivering affordable counselling in the local community.

We know that not everybody who would like to support our work is in a position to donate money, so why not consider giving a little of your time instead by fundraising for us? Fundraising can be a really fun and rewarding way to help make a difference in your community - it can help you to build new skills and grow in confidence, as well as providing opportunities to meet like-minded people, all in the knowledge that the work you are doing is helping us to change lives!

If you’re in need of some inspiration to get those creative juices flowing, here are 10 ideas for fun ways to fundraise!

1. Cake Off!

Fancy yourself as the next Mary Berry? Why not put your culinary skills to the test and host your very own version of the Great British Bake Off? Ask contestants for a small donation to enter the competition, pick a winner and sell the tasty creations in a bake sale afterwards – simple and delicious!

2. Get sponsored to…

You can get creative with this one – it’s amazing what people will sponsor you to do! How about a sponsored social media ban? Sponsored bike ride? Skydive? Or maybe just a good old sponsored silence? The possibilities are endless!

3. ‘Office Jargon’ Jar

This is a good one for the workplace. We’ve all heard of the swear jar – well how about an ‘Office Jargon’ jar? You know the culprits: ‘touch base’, ‘no brainer’, ‘game changer’, ‘on the same page’, ‘hit the ground running’… You know what to do! Why not raise the stakes by asking your employer to match the total amount raised?

4. Clothes Swap

This one is not only great for fundraising but also saving the planet! Invite friends or colleagues to each bring a bag of clean clothes in good condition to donate to the swap, charge a small entry fee and get swapping! You can then donate any remaining clothes to charity at the end of the event – it really is the gift that keeps on giving!

5. Car Wash

The old classic – simple and easy to do with a few basic supplies. This is a great fundraising idea for groups or teams to get involved with, requiring lots of workers with lots of energy!

6. Get Creative!

Are you a talented artist? Budding fashion designer? Enjoy making jewellery? Why not sell your crafts to raise money for charity? This can either be done by setting up a stall (you may need to get permission beforehand), or online on websites like Etsy, Depop or eBay.

7. Host a Tea Party

Tea parties and coffee mornings are always a great way to raise money for charity over tasty sweet treats and a good natter. Why not invite your guests to dress for a Mad Hatter’s Tea Party? Or swap the tea for a glass of bubbly with a Ladies’ Day theme? Anything goes!

8. Quiz Night

Reckon you’d make a great Quizmaster? Find yourself a good pub or function room, round up your friends and family, charge a small entry fee and get quizzical! Let the venue know that you are fundraising on behalf of a charity – they may let you hire function rooms for free or even throw in some freebies as prizes!

9. Office Fancy-Dress Day

Decide on a theme – e.g. Shocking Shirt Day, Bad Hair Day, Superhero Day… and ask for a small donation for participation. Why not hold a competition for the best (or worst) dressed and hold fundraising activities throughout the day (in costume, of course!).

10. Karaoke Night

Love it or loathe it, it’s a sure-fire way to raise money whilst having a lot of laughs! You could even take it one step further and get competitive - X Factor style!

If you do decide to fundraise for NCS, we would love to hear from you and help you to promote your event. Send us a message on Facebook and let us know what crazy things you’re getting up to!

You can also set up a fundraising page on our website, so that your supporters or sponsors can donate directly to the service, helping us to continue our provision of accessible and affordable counselling in the local community.