10 Creative Winter Fundraising Ideas

December 5, 2016
8 minutes

Fundraising is the lifeblood of a nonprofit. It allows it to continue making strides towards fulfilling its mission through the various causes it has. Getting creative with fundraising provides more opportunities to bring more supporters on board who become excited to support your nonprofit. 

The winter, particularly November and December, is when nonprofits push the hardest when it comes to fundraising. Over a quarter of all nonprofits bring in up to half of their annual funds from their year-end fundraisers.

When you incorporate any one of these ten creative winter fundraising event ideas, you will bring on the festive cheer of the season. And if you notice, a lot of these ideas are either events or they're perfect winter peer-to-peer fundraising ideas, so one thing you'll need to do is make sure your fundraising platform has P2P under control and ready for you to make it rain, or actually, make it snow!

Polar Plunge

A favorite of resilient and brave people anywhere it gets cold, the polar plunge could be a great idea for a fundraiser during the winter. More people than you think will be willing to dive into freezing waters for your cause. This event will generate lots of buzz and hype. It will be talked about for several weeks and months in advance, given how unique it is from your run-of-the-mill fundraisers.

Holiday Concert

Around the holidays, you can look into hiring local choirs, bands, DJs, and other music artists to take part in a holiday concert. Finding a venue indoors will be best given the frigid temperatures outside. You may get lucky and not have to pay for the venue. You may even get the performers to perform for free, given it is going to be a nonprofit fundraiser. After all, the money will be going to a good cause. You can emphasize how all of the money from ticket sales will be going towards supporting your cause.

Snow Tubing

Snow tubing is fun for all ages and does not require any skill, unlike skiing. You can partner with a local company to put on a snow tubing winter fundraiser. With a snow tubing excursion, you get to engage and entertain your donors, as well as their families. 

Hygge Winter Party

Hygge is a Danish word for 'coziness' and can be a charming idea for a winter fundraiser. This will be an especially creative way to hold a fundraiser. You can tell your attendees to dress in comfy and wintry sweaters and scarves. You can host a hygge winter party either indoors or outdoors. If you have one indoors, you can have a cozy fireplace crackling, setting up cushions and blankets. Make enough hot chocolate and hot cider to go around. Get some candles lit for extra ambiance. Charge a fee to enter this charming hygge winter wonderland.

Romantic Sleigh Ride

This one can be either for couples or families with small children. Sleigh rides hearken back to another time and are loads of fun. You get to ride in a one (or two) horse open sleigh through a winter wonderland! When you promote this fundraiser, you will need to remind the participants to wear warm winter clothes. You can provide blankets, as well. Decorate the carriages to get those Instagram-worthy photos that will further promote your cause. You can provide hot tea afterward and even have a photographer who will take photos for a donation to the cause.

Cider, Beer, or Wine Tasting

A cup of hot cider is one of the quintessential holiday beverages, especially in Europe. Bring some Old World winter merriment to the states by holding a cider tasting. You can also combine the tasting with beer and wine so that there is something for everyone. Team up with a microbrewery, of which there are many these days, for a tasting event.

Visit From Santa

Santa will be delighted to support your nonprofit's cause, so invite him down to your fundraiser. Provide children of potential donors an opportunity to meet Santa and bring joy to their lives. After paying a small fee, participants will get to get a picture taken with Santa.

Super Bowl Party

Further into winter, you have the Super Bowl. Lots of people get excited about the big game and anticipate its arrival. This year, you can make it even more exciting by hosting a Super Bowl party fundraiser. Offer everyone's favorite Super Bowl munchies and obtain a projector to show the game on the big screen. Ask attendees to pay a fee or provide the ability to give a donation.

Raffle Baskets

Raffle baskets work during any time of the year, which means they can definitely be used during the winter months. In fact, they are even more effective during the holiday season. Your baskets can be winter-themed. You could put together a chocolate experience, offering fondue kits, tea light candles, chocolate buttons, marshmallows, and strawberries. You could also make a holiday movie basket, where you offer Netflix credit, board games, hot chocolate, and fancy popcorn. You could even create a rejuvenating winter spa day basket, featuring eye masks, bath salts, slippers, and tea. Customize the baskets and then sell them using the raffle system. 

Clothing or Toy Drive

The winter holiday season is a great time to provide for the less fortunate. You can create a drive for clothes, toys, or even something else. Whatever you focus on, you will be able to add a fundraising component for your nonprofit. You could suggest people make financial donations on top of the items they are giving for the drive you are holding. Make it easy for people to donate, offering the possibility to donate either online or in person.

Get Creative

Being creative with your fundraising ideas will ensure you become as successful as possible with your fundraiser. The more engaging and interesting you make it, the more potential you have to get supporters and donors interested. The fundraiser's potential cost can be kept low with most of these, especially when you get creative. Start by taking one of these ideas and using it for your next nonprofit fundraiser during this festive time of the year.

Start For Free