Are you taking on the SuperHalfs series for a charity? Fundraising can be a daunting task, but if you get creative about your fundraising it’ll help you stand out from the crowd and raise more money than you ever thought possible.
What better way to put a unique spin on your fundraising than to put together fundraisers based on the cities you’ll be visiting on your SuperHalfs journey? Lisbon, Prague, Copenhagen, Cardiff and Valencia are home to a varied mix of cultures and local histories, and should give you plenty of interesting ideas for raising money towards your fundraising target.
Lisbon: Bake your own custard tarts to sell
Pastéis de nata were first invented in the 18th century by Catholic monks in Lisbon, who soon started selling them to bring in much-needed funds after the Liberal Revolution. They’ve been a must-try for every visitor to Lisbon ever since, and as soon as you’ve tried one of these sweet, flaky custard tarts you’ll see why.
Why not take inspiration from those monks, and whip up your own batch of these delicious custard tarts to sell in a charity bake sale? Recipes are easy to find, but we find that the simpler ones are usually better. Don’t overdo it with complex ingredients, and instead focus on getting all of your measurements and timings spot on. You might need a few test runs to perfect the recipe, but once you’ve had some practice you’ll be able to make them relatively easily.
Once you’ve mastered the recipe, break down the ingredients you’ll need and total up the cost to work out how much you need to charge for each pastel de nata.
The venue you pick for your Lisbon-inspired bake sale will make a huge difference to the amount you can raise for your charity. If you can get a stall at a local market or fair that would be ideal as you’ll know that visitors are willing to spend money, especially if there is a good cause involved. Alternatively, this is a good office fundraiser. Be sure to email all of your colleagues in advance to make sure they bring in plenty of cash.
The best thing about this fundraiser is these sweet treats are notoriously addictive. As soon as someone has tried one they’ll be back for more, so keep that in mind when you’re working out how many to prepare.
Prague: Beer tasting event with Czech beers
To say the people of the Czech Republic are proud of their nationally produced beers is an understatement. The Czech Republic drinks more beer per person than any other country in the world, and many of the most famous varieties are brewed in and around the capital.
A beer tasting event is a great fundraiser, as the profit margins are extremely high if you plan carefully. Obviously you should exclusively offer Czech beers, but with so many options including Staropramen, Pilsner Urquell and Budweiser (not to be confused with the eponymous American version) you’ll be spoiled for choice.
Charge money for tickets, and make sure you’ve priced it up accordingly based on how much the drinks will cost you. You’ll usually be able to get about four tasting servings from a bottle, and you should aim to offer about six different servings per person.
You can either host your Czech beer tasting fundraiser at home, or better yet at a local bar where some of the staff may be able to assist with serving drinks. If you’re hosting it at home, make sure you have enough glasses to allow multiple servings per guest. Don’t be afraid to ask to raid the kitchen cupboards of your friends and family if you don’t think you’ll have enough.
Providing food for your guests is important as well, but don’t worry about cooking full gourmet meals. Small light bites are more than enough, especially ones that will serve as palette cleansers between tastings. A variety of breads and dips will do the trick.
Make sure you brush up on the history of Czech brewing and the types of beer you’re serving so you can keep your guests informed and entertained. You’ll find plenty of information on the Prague City Tourism website.
If you want to widen your pool of potential doners by catering to non-drinkers as well, try offering a selection of non-alcoholic beers. There are plenty of varieties available, but if you want to take inspiration from the event itself, try to pick up the botanically inspired ‘Birell’. This herb-infused non-alcoholic beer is served to runners and spectators at the Sportisimo Prague Half Marathon in apple, ginger and chamomile varieties.
Copenhagen: Sponsored exercise bike challenge
The City Bike, or ‘Bycyklen’, is so intrinsically linked to Copenhagen that one was gifted to Bill Clinton when he made a presidential visit to the city in 1997. This convenient electric bike is popular with locals and tourists alike, and is the most efficient and enjoyable way to travel around Copenhagen.
While you might struggle to get hold of an electric bike for a fundraiser, an exercise bike or stationary bike will be straightforward to source. Rather than travelling around, this is a fundraiser you’ll be doing in one place to maximise your fundraising potential. Set yourself a challenge for miles covered on the stationary bike, and ask your supporters to sponsor you for every mile you cover. Add in extra elements like fancy dress for added fundraising opportunities.
As well as the money you collect from friends and family for your cycling challenge, place a couple of buckets out next to your bike so that passers by can donate some spare change. Try to produce a large poster that covers some key information about the cause you’re fundraising for so that people are aware why you’re cycling like you’ve never cycled before.
The key to the success of this fundraiser is to do it where you’ll have as many people passing you as possible. Busy public spaces like shopping centres or supermarkets are perfect for this, but make sure you seek the permission of the owners first.
As well as a great fundraiser, cycling is also perfect cross training for runners. By doing the odd cycling session as part of your training you’ll give your legs a break from the impact of running whilst still maintaining your levels of cardiovascular fitness.
Cardiff: Vinyl record sale
Cardiff is home to Spillers Records, which opened in 1894 making it the oldest record shop in the world. Vinyl is officially making a comeback, with over 10 million albums sold last year. But that doesn’t even begin to scrape the surface of a bustling second hand market, where some of the rarer records change hands for huge sums of money.
This makes selling old vinyl records a hugely effective fundraiser with the potential to raise thousands if you can find a decent range of albums to sell. To source your records, ask your family, friends and colleagues to search their attics and cupboards for their old LPs. You’ll find most people will have at least a couple of crates gathering dust, and they should be more than happy to clear the space in their house and help out a good cause at the same time.
Once you’ve found a good selection of records to sell, it’s time to price them up. The easiest way to do this is to visit a marketplace webwsite like Discogs and search for each of the albums you have. You’ll often see multiple listings for the same record, which will give you a good idea of the average asking price based on the condition of your copy.
You have a couple of options for selling your records. If you need to sell everything as quickly as possible, you could visit a local record shop. You’ll need to accept a slightly lower price for the convenience of selling in bulk, but they won’t be able to take advantage of you if you’re armed with a rough idea of how much each record is worth.
Better yet is to sell directly to collectors. There are a few places you can do this like car boot sales, fairs and markets. The price of a stall should be fairly low, and everything you sell after that will be pure profit to go towards your fundraising total.
Valencia: Homemade orange juice stand
Oranges are integral to the city of Valencia. Valencians eat and drink oranges with most meals of the day, and the industry is worth millions of euros to the local economy. The unique mixture of fertile soil and warm weather combine to make a sweet tasting orange that is unmatched anywhere else in the world.
When you cross the finish line of the Valencia Half Marathon you’ll be given a bag of these delicious oranges in your goodie bag. While there won’t be enough to share with all your fundraising supporters, you can still give them a taste of the experience whilst raising some money for your cause at the same time.
A homemade orange juice stand is a highly effective fundraiser, especially in the summer months. Orange juice is easy to make - simply peel the oranges and remove the white membrane, then chop them into quarters. Take out any seeds, then throw them in a blender or mixer and blend until completely liquidised.
You’ll need to set up your orange juice stand somewhere with access to power so that you can keep the juice cold. Outdoor markets are a good option, as they will usually provide stalls with access to power via generators. Don’t be afraid to set a high price per glass, as people will be happy to pay it for such a fresh, natural drink.
You should also keep some of the orange juice for your own training. Freshly squeezed orange juice is a great natural drink to enjoy after a training run, as its high levels of vitamin C boost immunity and help your muscles recover.