Fundraising Ideas

Fundraising Ideas For Mental Health Organizations

Mental Health MattersFundraising Ideas for mental health-related organizations and raising money for mental health awareness are certainly not new. But mental health has been a major global concern since the beginning of the pandemic, sadly affecting people of all ages, backgrounds, and financial circumstances. It has been an emotional rollercoaster for many, whether due to losing jobs, feeling lonely and isolated at home, or even children finding it hard to reintegrate into schools and socialize again.

A great way to address the stigma associated with mental illness and make a real impact on people’s well-being is by starting a fundraiser for mental health awareness. It is highly likely that someone close to you is suffering something challenging during these unprecedented times. So, take a look at our list of mental health fundraising ideas to show your support and increase awareness around this ever-growing topic.

Before You Start – Educate Yourself

It’s important to fully understand the cause you’re fundraising for before you start a mental health-related fundraising event. Mental health is a complex and delicate subject that requires compassion and empathy, as well as a solid understanding of its challenges. Increasing your knowledge on the subject will ensure that you spread comprehensible, accurate, and appropriate awareness about mental illness. By sharing your personal journey and asking people to talk about their experiences, you gain a better grasp of the topic and give people the support they need.

Get Moving for Mental Health

Release a much-needed dose of endorphins by organizing a fundraiser to get people outside and moving their bodies. Choose from our list of crowdfunding events to start raising money for mental health awareness and charities. Many of these events work well in a virtual or hybrid format if need be.

Walk-a-Thons

walk-a-thonA fantastic way to raise money for mental health issues is by organizing a walk-a-thon fundraiser. Walk-a-thons include people of all ages, shapes, and sizes and gets them moving at their pace, which is why it is always a popular fundraising event. Follow our guide to help you put together a successful walk-a-thon fundraiser.

Bike-A-Thons And Spin-A-Thons

bike-a-thonWhether you have an exercise bike at home or you prefer to get out and cycle in the fresh air, why not organize a bike-a-thon or a spin-a-thon to get those stiff lockdown joints moving again? You can even add a twist to the usual bike-a-thon and visit famous landmarks along the route and post pictures on social media to show your supporters.

Dance-A-Thons

dance-a-thonGet into the party spirit by hosting a dance-a-thon and get your boogie on! Whether it be individually, or as part of a team, with your schools, businesses, or clubs online anyone can join in the fun and raise money for your cause. Take a look at our dance-a-thon article to learn more about how to host a great dance party.

Swim-A-Thons

swim-a-thonDive into summer by hosting a swim-a-thon and raise money for deserving mental health causes. You can either participate as a team or individually. It’s a challenge that’s open to everyone, regardless of age and ability. So, if you can swim, you can take part!

Take It To The Extreme!

jog-move-a-thonIf you are looking to raise money for mental health in a more adventurous way, why not consider an extreme sports fundraiser? Take part in a skydiving challenge or bungee jumping and tick these activities off your bucket list whilst making money and promoting awareness for mental illness.

More Ideas to Raise Money for Mental Health Awareness

Organize A Walky Talky

A Walky Talky is a fantastic idea to get people moving and talking about mental health, whilst raising money for a great cause. It’s been a tough year and many people have suffered, so let’s get out together, move our bodies and have a chat about our problems or simply listen to someone in need. Similar to planning a walk-a-thon, first decide on a walking route and its distance, such as a 5K walk.

Ask participants to recruit a team to walk with them. This could be family and close friends, a work/business event, or a virtual Whatsapp Talk and Walk activity. Either way, it will give everyone involved the chance to catch up, get things off their chests, do some exercise and raise money for mental health charities.

Sell Custom Merchandise

To increase donations and boost awareness about mental illness, why not run an e-commerce store and sell team t-shirts with a customized logo highlighting your cause. Personalized merchandise is a great way to maximize your outreach and encourage supporters to spread the word about your fundraiser and the charity you’re raising money for. But you don’t have to limit it to just t-shirts! Check out our list of best-selling custom printed merchandise for fundraising.

Mental Health MeditationHold a Meditation Sit-A-Thon

Relaxation and mindfulness have been proven to improve a person’s well-being and mental health.  A meditation sit-a-thon can be a popular activity that will attract people of all ages and abilities. Even for the meditation novice, this is a great way to introduce a new method of finding inner peace in our very busy world. Consider adding in a yoga or mindful movement class to start the day off right.

Host A Mental Health Awareness Event

Looking for an option to encourage people to donate to mental health issues and get educated about the subject at the same time? Then why not host a discussion or workshop on mental illness. Sell tickets to the event and maybe even include a charity raffle with a selection of prizes to pamper your supporters. Invite qualified professionals to provide vital information about mental health. Ask psychologists, nurses, doctors, or other caretakers who might work in the mental health sector to give a talk about the challenges that are being faced. Organize some interactive and fun activities such as mindfulness exercises, yoga, meditation, and art or laughing therapy, which will shine a light on some of the issues and provide coping tools to feel calmer in our rat-race of a world.  People could also talk about their experiences with mental health in a sharing circle. Don’t forget to hand out information with follow-up support after the event for people to discuss any struggles they may be having – they may choose to open up in private instead of in a group.

Try Virtual Fundraising Efforts for Mental Health

Thanks to the pandemic we have learned that we can fundraise virtually without having to leave the comfort of our own homes. There are so many events that you can host virtually to raise money and awareness for mental health, here’s just a few.

Virtual Pub Quiz

Get friends, family, and coworkers together for a virtual pub quiz. Ask for a donation and offer a small prize for the winning team. Being together for an evening of fun and camaraderie is a positive way to get people talking and lift their spirits.

Virtual Bake-Off

Baking for Mental HealthAmateur baking has never been so popular, so why not host a live baking competition to raise money for mental health causes? Send out the recipes and ingredient list beforehand and charge a small fee to participate. Live stream the event and the participants can record their entries and compete together in real-time. Reward the winner with a voucher for afternoon tea or a baking gift basket.

Cocktail/Mocktail Night

Get into the party spirit with an evening of virtual cocktail or mocktail making. Hand out cocktail recipes to everyone in advance so they can make them on the night and discuss their concoctions with each other. Be sure to include non-alcoholic or mocktail options. Charge a small donation to participate and maybe have a cocktail naming competition. The person who comes up with the most catchy name wins a prize.

Community Fundraising Work for Mental Health Organizations

Many people suffer in silence with mental illness, so creating a sense of community and togetherness is vital to help those in need and give them a voice. Community fundraising ideas for mental health can include:

Community Art And Story Projects

Gather works of art, such as drawings, paintings, and sculptures along with personal stories of people facing the challenges of mental illness. Host a gallery show of these works and ask a professional to give a talk on the subject. Sell tickets to the show and all the proceeds will go to your mental health charity. This is a great way to educate people and create awareness about the issues surrounding mental health, whilst empowering the artists who are sharing their intimate stories. People of all ages, backgrounds, and abilities should be able to compete. Why not custom print merchandise to sell at the event or on an e-Commerce store to maximize donations and spread the word of your cause? Don’t forget to use social media to promote the event, engage supporters in the project, obtain more submissions and post photos of the pieces of art and their stories to increase your outreach.

A Street Tea Party

Tea Party Mental HealthA quintessentially British tradition that combines togetherness, community spirit, and good food and drink, hosting a Street Tea Party can be a great fundraising idea for mental health awareness. Originally quite a formal affair, times have changed, and a more relaxed BBQ theme may be more popular. If not, get people all dressed up and host a British-themed tea party with a variety of finger sandwiches, cakes, scones, and of course a pot of tea! People can bring food and drinks to share and sit and talk until the sun goes down. Ask people to make donations to your mental health cause and maybe organize a charity tombola with some fun prizes.

As you can see there are plenty of ways we can fundraise for mental health and help those in need who have been affected. The main thing is to keep people active, safe, and open the lines of communication, so they don’t feel so alone. If you’re concerned about yourself or a loved one, find out how you can get help from a UK mental health charity or organization here.

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About Sarah Bender

Originally from Surrey, UK, Sarah has worked remotely in various online fields for the last 8 years. Currently, she is focusing on writing blogs on online fundraising and special events for a UK audience. When she is not spending her days researching and writing, you can find her running around after her two highly active young sons which constitutes a serious workout program!
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