15 ideas for Christmas fundraising

We have put together our favourite creative ideas to help you raise funds for the new Oak Cancer Centre this Christmas.

It’s that time of year again! Christmas is in the air and it’s the perfect season to get fundraising. Whether you’re fundraising at school, at work or with family and friends, we’ve put together a great selection of unique ideas to inspire you to do something a bit different and support our Oak Cancer Cancer Centre appeal this winter.

Our 15 favourite Christmas fundraising ideas

Christmas star craft

1. Host a Christmas crafternoon  

Host a crafternoon and bring friends or co-workers together and get creative – the perfect way to get into the Holiday spirit. Make Christmas cards, wreaths, decorate gingerbread, paint baubles, or hold a paint-and-sip with mulled wine! The opportunities are endless. Ask for a small fee from participants, and you could even auction off pieces to the highest bidders at the end. This fundraising idea could also work great over Zoom! 

Make sure to download our free guide to help you plan your own event!

2. An advent calendar challenge  

This Christmas why not try our alterative take on a traditional advent calendar to raise money. Get your friends and family to challenge you or challenge yourself to do something every day in the lead up to Christmas this year. Your challenges could be anything, from running 5k in a Santa costume to performing a Christmas carol in public. To get started, think up a few fun challenges, set up a fundraising page and start sharing! Post videos or pictures of your challenges and ask people to sponsor your efforts. Get friends and family involved and ask them to bid the different challenges you take on!  

3. Hold a winter Olympics  

A winter Olympics sports day is a great fundraising idea for schools or the workplace. Get ready to bring out your competitive side and go for gold! With festive sporting challenges such as the reindeer run, the candy cane javelin toss, the desk chair slalom and the team cardboard box bobsleigh – there's piles of fun to be had. Don’t forget to plan for your closing ceremony complete with medals and certificates. Set a fee for team signups and ask for donations on the day.  

yule log

4. Yule log eating competition

Arguably one of the best things about the holiday season is the number of delicious festive treats, and what better than a yule log! For a competition that’s both tasty and fun to watch, host a yule log eating competition at your Christmas party or fair. Set an entry fee and source a good prize (even better if you can someone to donate one!). Fastest to finish the yule log wins – yule love it!

5. Christmas movie marathon

Nothing says it’s Christmas time like a classic festive film, and there is no shortage of good ones to choose from! Host a movie night with friends and family and ask for an entry fee donation. Hold a vote among your guests to get together a short list of films. From Elf to Home Alone, there’s something for everyone! Make sure to stock up on seasonal goodies and hot chocolate to share.

6. Deck your desk

Dig out the tinsel, get crafty with the glitter glue and hold a desk decoration contest! Go classic with tinsel and lights or get even more creative. A fun idea for both schools and work, this could even be made into a contest for the best dressed desk in the office! Ask for donations for entry or have people vote for best desk with donations. You’ll be working in a winter wonderland!

Girl in Christmas costume

7. Festive fancy dress day

A classic fun and easy Christmas fundraising idea. Host a Christmas jumper or festive fancy dress day at your school or workplace. You can even make it a contest with categories participants can donate to enter! Make awards for best dressed, most creative, or ugliest Christmas jumper and hold a vote! Don’t forget to collect donations from participants.


8. Set up a Christmas wrapping station

Are you a whiz with wrapping paper, tags, and tape? Not all of us are blessed with gift wrapping talents! Why not sell your skills and set up a gift-wrapping station and offer your services at work, school or in your local community – you may need to gather some volunteers to support you. Select some wrapping papers, ribbons, tape and gift tags and ask for a suggested donation per gift wrapped. You could even see if local businesses or Christmas fairs will let you offer gift wrapping services to their customers.

9. Host a themed holiday party

From a formal festive soiree to a Christmas pyjama party, the great thing about parties is they can be as fancy or as casual as you like! Make sure to set a budget and decide how you will collect donations – whether it's through ticket sales or through donations or activities on the night. Then all you have to do is have fun and dance the night away!

10. Karaoke and carolling open mic night

It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas, so why not host a karaoke and carols open mic night? Bring some festive cheer, warm up your vocal cords and look up the words to your favourite Christmas classic. This one might need a little bit more planning; make sure to think about location and how you’ll publicise your event. Raise funds by selling tickets on the door, ask for a small donation per song or by selling food and snacks. It’s guaranteed festive fun and definitely won’t be much of a silent night!

Five bonus ideas for fundraising AFTER Christmas

Christmas can be a hectic time of year so if you’re too busy in the lead up to the holidays, here are a few bonus ideas to help you hit the ground running and fundraise for us in 2022!


11. Take to the skies for a sponsored skydive!

Ever wondered what it feels like to jump out of a plane and free fall at over 120mph through the air? Well, why not sign up for our Summer Skydive for a once-in-a-lifetime experience and raise vital funds for cancer patients here and across the world.­­ Taking place in June 2022, you can sign up on our website here.

12. Take on a challenge in the New Year

We have lots of exciting fundraising events happening in 2022, so why not make a New Year’s resolution to take on a challenge for us? Here are just some of the exciting things you could do for us next year:

Boxing Day plunge

13. Boxing Day plunge

Are you brave enough? Why not take part in a sponsored dip on Boxing Day or New Years and ask friends and family to sponsor you? With open water events taking place all around the country in lidos, lakes and along the coast, there’s plenty of events to choose from. Bonus points if you can do it without a wetsuit or in fancy dress! Please remember to be careful – please do not take on this challenge alone and follow the guidance of the event organisers.

14. Give it up for January

We all have bad habits or little indulgences we enjoy a bit too often…but can you do without for a week – a month or even a year? January is the perfect time to take on this challenge and make a fresh start! What you give up and the length of your challenge is up to you but the tougher the challenge the more you could raise! Some popular things to give up are chocolate, alcohol, caffeine, TV, takeaways or even talking. Whether you’re cutting out cookies or saying bye to beer, make sure to set up a fundraising page for your challenge. As you go, share your milestones with friends and family and ask people to pledge donations at certain milestones to keep you motivated!

15. Unwanted Christmas present bring and buy sale

Unwanted gifts. We all get them, but instead of hiding them away at the back of your wardrobe, why not host a bring-and-buy sale? Organise this event at work or in your local community and help find these gifts an owner who will love them all while raising vital funds for the Oak Cancer Centre! Find out more about creating your own fundraising event here!


Find more ideas, guides and tips for fundraising for us here and don’t forget to let us know what you’re up to! Register your fundraising efforts with us to get support from our community fundraising team.

Whatever you choose to do, the funds you raise will help The Royal Marsden complete the construction of the Oak Cancer Centre. Find out more about how the Oak Cancer Centre will transform the lives of people with cancer here.

Register your fundraising efforts with us to get support from our community fundraising team.