FUNDRAISING IDEAS FOR VOLUNTEERING ABROAD

Welcome to the start of your fundraising journey with GVI! We’re aware that it can be rather daunting when faced with the prospects of raising the funds for your volunteering trip abroad. GVI is here to help you put the fun into the process and to assist you as you work towards reaching your goals. We’ve highlighted a few ideas for you, as well as provided some advice and resources to use to help get you started. Firstly, it’s important to realise that fundraising is enjoyable and is not as difficult as you might think. By considering the original reason that made you want to volunteer, along with the help of GVI’s No More Limits platform, we can start to create your fundraising story and get you on your way.

Step 1: Define Your Budget
This should include your total program fee, flights, VISA’s (if applicable), insurance, any other activities or further travel you are planning to do, as well as spending money. While your expenses on base will be minimal, it is important consider the experience as a whole and to take note of the things you’d to like to do over and above your participation on GVI’s program.

GVI’s Referral Program
Did you know that you can reduce your program fee by referring others to a GVI? If you refer a friend, who books within 14 days of your booking, you will both be eligible to a £100 discount on your overall program fee. This is a great way to kick off your fundraising efforts. Talk to one of our enrollment managers about this and be sure to spread the word to your network as well.

Step 2: Set Your Timeline
Next up, it’s time to define your fundraising timeline. Are you fundraising for six months or a year? Set a start date and an end date for your fundraising efforts, ensuring that your activities are aligned with deposit and instalment deadlines. It is important to adhere to instalment payment dates, to ensure that you retain your spot on the program. Allocate at least four to six months to raise sufficient funds, and be sure to stick to your monthly targets to help keep things on track.

Step 3: GVI Fundraising
GVI has launched an exciting new fundraising platform, which will allow you to set goals, share your progress and help you to achieve your targets. You will be able to share your fundraising page with friends and family as soon as it is created through the platform. Talk to your Enrolment Manager for more information.

Keep it Simple
Host a bake sale, raffle, car wash, garage sale, games night or karaoke contest at home. These events have lower overheads, meaning it requires only a small financial contribution from you, allowing for more funds to be allocated towards your fundraising efforts.

Draft a Letter
Do you know people who may be willing to donate to your cause? Draft a letter or an e-mail to those people, explaining why you’re volunteering, when you’re going, and letting them know that you’re looking for additional financial assistance. Every cent helps!

The 52 week challenge
If you’ve got over a year to fundraise, why not take on the 52 week challenge? This involves putting a small amount aside each week for a full year, or working your fundraising goals around achieving these targets for the next year.

i.e.
Week 1: Put aside or Raise $1 / £1
Week 2: Put aside or Raise $2 / £2
Week 3: Put aside or Raise $4 / £4
Week 4: Put aide or Raise $6 / £6

If you add just $2 / £2 to your weekly goal from week 2, you’ll end up raising over $2500 / £2500 over the course of the challenge. Ask a family member if they’re willing to match what you’re aiming to raise each week, and you’ll have your full amount before you know it.

Get a Part-Time Job
A part-time job provides you with some extra income, which you can put towards your fundraising efforts. Talk to shopkeepers in malls in your area about any vacancies, or search online for some part-time positions that you could work into your schedule while you fundraise.

Get Creative
Do you enjoy fashion and design? Why not host a fashion show, with ticket proceeds going towards your program fee. Alternatively, if you have a creative talent, like playing the piano, painting or taking photographs, why not set up a showcase or exhibition? This is a fun way to let your network of friends, family & acquaintances know that your GVI program is important to you.

Get Active
If you’ve got a lot of active friends and you enjoy a good competitive sport, why not set up a 5-a-side football tournament, basketball, or even table tennis competition? Charge an entry fee and provide refreshments after, keeping a portion of the proceeds for your fundraising efforts. You could also set a goal involving walking or running a certain amount of kilometers in a month, asking family to pledge $1 / £1 for every km you clock.

Go Green
Ask your colleagues or friends to donate to your efforts of planting and growing small plants, which directly benefits the environment. Once the plants have grown, you can sell them to front desk staff at local businesses in your area, to brighten their desks and their days.

Host a Themed Dinner Party
This is not just any dinner party, but one tailored to the theme of your program. If you’re going to Nepal, why not ask guest to dress in traditional Nepali outfits, while you serve some local cuisine that you’ll be tasting on your program? This not only gives you a taste of what is to come, but helps your friends and family gain context and insight into the region you will be visiting.

Wine Tasting
Approach a local winemaker and ask them to bring a selection of wines to your event or party. Charge a small fee to your friends and family and enjoy a private tasting right from the comfort of your own home.

Casual Friday at the Office
Talk to your boss about hosting a casual Friday at work, possibly once every month quarter. This is a simple way for you to talk to your colleagues about your program too. Charge a small fee and use these funds towards your fundraising efforts.

Do a Spring Clean
We all have clothes in our cupboards that we no longer wear, so why not sell your excess clothes online? Facebook Marketplace is an easy option to do so. Take individual photos of everything and share them with your friends and colleagues too, in case they want dibs on anything.

Open a Stall at Market/Sports Day/Car Boot Sale
Just as we have excess clothes in our cupboards, we also usually have appliances and items at home that we’ve outgrown or simply don’t use anymore. Find out about any markets/car boot sales in your area, and pocket the extra cash to go towards your program savings.

An Hour of Your Time
Ask people to sponsor “an hour of your time”, where you do something impactful and helping out others, for example, driving around the elderly at a nearby old age home, volunteering at a soup kitchen, or simply participating in an activity related to the subject of your GVI program. You could do two or three hours a week over the course of a six month period, which will make a real dent in your financial goals.

Sponsored Marathon / Charity Run
An easy way to get sponsor support is to take part in a half or full marathon, asking people to sponsor your participation the race and explaining to them that you’re doing it for a great cause. Make sure you have enough time to train and of course and be sure to consult with a doctor before entering any long distance races.

Sell Sandwiches at the Office
Everyone loves a decent sandwich, but sometimes the shop around the corner just doesn’t cut it anymore. Why not start selling sandwiches at your place of work? Run a small survey to see what people would be interested in, engaging with them directly and also giving yourself an opportunity to talk to them about why you’re raising funds.

Organise an Event
While time consuming, running an event or a party can be very profitable if well planned and executed. Explore unsigned local bands in your area, and talk to your local pub or venue about possibly hosting an artist showcase. You could also throw a party at your home, with a theme relevant to your program, charging an entrance fee and using the profits for your fundraising efforts.

Host a Movie Screening
If a quiet night in is more of your scene, why not host a weekly movie screening at home? This could include renting a movie online with a theme related to your program, which will also lead to engaging conversation after.

Reapproach Your Birthday
We’ve all received socks for our birthday and smiled and nodded appreciatively, even though it wasn’t exactly what we were looking for. If your birthday coincides with your fundraising efforts, ask your friends and family for cash towards your cause, which will not only help them feel more philanthropic, but is also a great opportunity for you to engage with and educate them about your GVI program.

Cooking Days at Work
Similarly to hosting a themed evening at home, you could talk to your boss about doing a cooking day at the office, where you bring some cuisine from the region you are visiting to the office. Charge a small fee to those who want to participate. Make sure to cater to everyone’s needs, by finding out who in the office is vegan or vegetarian and be sure to make everyone feel included.

No Coffee Drive
Most people love a good cup of coffee, so why not run a “no coffee drive” at the office, where you encourage your colleagues to take a break from coffee consumption, and rather donating the funds they would have spent on that expensive latte to a worthy cause (yours) for a week or two. If someone consumes 2 cups of coffee a day, you could raise quite a bit of money, so encourage as many people as possible to take part. Don’t forget that you should do the same of course!

External Sponsors
You might be surprised to find assistance in places you weren’t necessarily expecting it. Be prepared, and make sure you have a pitch ready in case you get approached by a sponsor (for example, individuals known to support volunteering causes, such as philanthropists or social entrepreneurs) who may wish to fund your trip.

Local Organisation Support
You could also approach a local organisation or business in your community who could contribute and donate a portion of your program fee. Discuss this with your parents, friends and acquaintances as networking forms an important part of your fundraising process.

University Support
If you’re currently enrolled at university, have you considered volunteering as part of your university course? Explore scholarship and funding opportunities from your institution and also talk to us if you require any specific documentation to help you secure necessary funding.

Government Grants
Explore applying for a government grant or loan where possible. This may involve a longer process, so do keep this in mind as part of your timeline, as set out in step 2.

Home is where the heart is
Your family will possibly be your biggest supporters on your fundraising journey. Talk to your immediate and extended family about matching what you manage to raise and save every month, to help you get even closer to your goals.

Additional Resources

Blog: More Fundraising Ideas

Are you excited to volunteer abroad but unsure how you will finance your trip? Here are our top suggestions for fundraising for your journey with GVI.

Fundraising Manual

We've also set up a comprehensive fundraising manual which is easy to share with friends and family. Download your own copy right here!

Download our program brochures