Virtual Fundraising Event Ideas

There can be many benefits to hosting a virtual fundraiser for your organization if you have the right tools and ideas.

With many things becoming virtual these days, the need for virtual fundraisers has grown for schools, non-profits and sports teams. Like other fundraising events, virtual fundraising events can still be interactive and potentially even more effective if planned right. There can be many benefits to hosting a virtual fundraiser for your organization if you have the right tools and ideas.

 Benefits of Virtual Fundraisers

  1. Less expensive: Often times virtual fundraising events can be less expensive to plan and execute because certain costs aren’t necessary, such as venue costs. 
  2. Easier to Organize: In-person events can require a lot of planning and organization in the months and weeks leading up to them. With the right virtual fundraising strategy, you can remove the need for many volunteers, vendors, and other details that in-person events require.  
  3. More Accessible: Attending a virtual event is often times easier to participate in when it can be done on their own terms and even in the comfort of their own home. Planning a virtual fundraiser may even mean that your organization can raise more money and have a larger reach if there are less limitations for your supporters.

Virtual Fundraising Ideas

  1. Chipotle Fundraiser: Chipotle’s fundraiser program gives back 25% of event sales (subject to achievement of a minimum of $150 total event sales), and the fundraisers are easy to set up online. With a digital fundraiser feature, supporters have the option to either order in store or can order online by using the Chipotle app or through Just make sure they order online for pickup at the participating restaurant during the timeframe of your fundraiser. To apply for a fundraiser with Chipotle, click here.
  2. Online Auction: Set up an online auction by creating an online page to show all available items. Auction off gift cards, merchandise, and other items that are donated from local businesses. There are many online auction platforms that make it easy to set up and execute. The earlier this is planned, the better chances you have at receiving exciting prizes and building up excitement with your supporters.
  3. Virtual Race: Encourage your community to stay active by running or walking wherever they may be, either outside or on a treadmill. Anyone can pay a registration fee to sign up and your organization can set up a date and time for everyone to participate on their own, together. Make a Facebook event ahead of time and encourage supporters to post pictures of their run/walk. This can build community and increase conversation and excitement.
  4. Virtual Live-Stream or Webinar: Connecting and fundraising with Zoom has become the norm and can be a great virtual fundraising tool. Host a webinar with a member of your organization to inform supporters what their donation will be going towards, or host a live-stream to connect people from anywhere they may be. When hosting a fundraiser with Chipotle, consider planning a virtual dinner that night where supporters can order their Chipotle, hop on Zoom and have dinner with their classmates, teammates, or fellow non-profit advocates.
  5. Virtual Concert: Another way to utilize Zoom, Facebook live, or other video conferencing platforms. If hosting a fundraiser for your school’s band program, plan a live virtual concert to share with family members and friends from anywhere. Consider taking song requests ahead of time to get your audience involved. If hosting a virtual fundraiser for a  non-profit, ask a local band to play a virtual concert for a good cause.
  6. Virtual Movie Night: Social distancing doesn’t mean that movies can’t be enjoyed with others. Set up a virtual movie night with Teleparty and drive people to donate to your organization’s online donation page. Teleparty allows everyone to watch together and even adds group chat abilities for people to feel connected.
  7. Virtual Cooking Class: Team up with a local chef or a volunteer who loves to cook. Host your event on an online video conferencing platform such as Zoom and send out the ingredient list ahead of time. A virtual cooking class is hands on, raises money for a good cause, and participants learn how to make a new dish while in the comfort of their own kitchen.

Fundraising efforts may have changed in recent years, but virtual fundraising events can be even more successful and still promote community building with the right virtual fundraising tools and practices. From hosting a restaurant fundraiser with Chipotle to setting up a virtual 5K, raising funds for your organization online is still possible. For more benefits of hosting an online fundraiser, click here.