Best Peer-to-Peer Fundraising Ideas for Nonprofits

Peer-to-peer fundraising is a powerful strategy for nonprofits looking to engage supporters, expand their reach, and raise more funds. By leveraging the networks of your existing supporters, you can tap into new audiences and create a sense of community around your cause. In this article, we’ll explore ten innovative peer-to-peer fundraising ideas that can help your nonprofit stand out and achieve its fundraising goals.

Top Nonprofit Peer-to-Peer Fundraising Ideas 

Whether you’ve run peer-to-peer fundraising campaigns before or you’re new to this type of nonprofit fundraising, getting creative with the type of campaign you launch is key to a successful fundraiser. These top peer-to-peer fundraising ideas will help you determine the best course of action for your nonprofit’s funding needs. 

1. Charity Walks, Runs, or Bike Rides 

Organizing a charity walk, run, or bike ride is a classic peer-to-peer fundraising idea that never goes out of style. These events allow supporters to participate in a physical activity they enjoy while raising funds for your nonprofit. To make your event stand out, consider choosing a unique location, theme, or challenge level. Encourage participants to form teams, set fundraising goals, and share their progress on social media.

Tips for a successful charity walk, run, or ride:

  • Choose a route that is accessible and attractive to participants
  • Provide clear fundraising guidelines and support materials
  • Offer incentives for top fundraisers, such as exclusive merchandise or experiences
  • Partner with local businesses for sponsorships and in-kind donations

2. Virtual Challenges 

Virtual challenges have gained popularity in recent years, especially during times when in-person events are not possible. These challenges encourage supporters to take on a specific task or activity for a set number of days while collecting donations. Examples include reading challenges, cooking challenges, or fitness challenges. Virtual challenges allow supporters to participate from anywhere and at their own pace, making them highly accessible.

Tips for an effective virtual challenge:

  • Choose a challenge that aligns with your nonprofit’s mission and values
  • Provide a clear timeline and set of rules for participants
  • Encourage participants to share their progress and engage with each other on social media
  • Offer virtual rewards or recognition for top fundraisers

3. Birthday or Holiday Fundraisers 

Encouraging supporters to dedicate their birthday, anniversary, or holiday celebrations to your nonprofit is a great way to tap into existing personal networks. Supporters can create online fundraising pages, share their personal stories, and ask friends and family to donate in lieu of gifts. This idea works well on social media platforms like Facebook, which allows users to create dedicated fundraising pages for their birthdays.

Tips for a successful holiday fundraiser:

  • Provide a clear call-to-action and make it easy for supporters to create their fundraising pages
  • Offer pre-written social media and email templates for supporters to share with their networks
  • Acknowledge and thank supporters who dedicate their special day to your cause
  • Share success stories and impact updates to keep supporters engaged

4. Crowdfunding Campaigns 

Crowdfunding can make an excellent peer-to-peer fundraising strategy. Crowdfunding platforms like GoFundMe, CauseVox, and Fundly provide an easy way for nonprofits to create compelling campaigns and reach new audiences. To make your campaign stand out, focus on storytelling and creating a sense of urgency. Use photos, videos, and personal stories to illustrate the impact of your work and the importance of the campaign.

Tips to enhance nonprofit crowdfunding campaigns:

  • Set a clear fundraising goal and deadline
  • Offer incentives or rewards for different donation levels
  • Share regular updates and progress reports with supporters
  • Encourage supporters to share the campaign with their networks

5. Social Media Challenges 

Social media challenges can be a fun and engaging way to raise funds and awareness for your nonprofit. These challenges typically involve supporters completing a specific task, such as a dance or a silly stunt, and nominating others to participate. The ALS Ice Bucket Challenge is a famous example of a successful social media challenge that went viral and raised significant funds for ALS research.

Tips for effectively leveraging social media challenges:

  • Choose a challenge that is easy to understand and participate in
  • Provide clear instructions and a catchy hashtag for participants to use
  • Encourage participants to tag friends and share the challenge on their social media profiles
  • Partner with influencers or celebrities to help spread the word

6. Peer-to-Peer Gaming Tournaments 

For nonprofits with a tech-savvy or gaming-focused audience, hosting online gaming tournaments can be a unique and effective way to raise funds. Participants can pay an entry fee to compete in popular games like Fortnite, League of Legends, or Minecraft, with prizes for top performers. You can also encourage participants to collect donations or sponsorships from their networks.

Tips to run effective gaming tournaments:

  • Choose games that are popular and accessible to your target audience
  • Partner with gaming influencers or companies for sponsorships and promotion
  • Provide clear rules and guidelines for the tournament
  • Offer attractive prizes for winners and top fundraisers

7. Skill-Based Fundraisers 

Skill-based fundraisers allow supporters to offer their talents and expertise in exchange for donations. This can include things like cooking classes, photography sessions, music lessons, or professional consulting. Supporters can create online profiles showcasing their skills and set their own rates or suggested donation amounts.

Tips for successful skills-based fundraisers:

  • Provide a platform for supporters to create profiles and list their skills
  • Encourage supporters to share their profiles with their networks
  • Offer tips and resources for supporters to market their skills effectively
  • Highlight successful skill-based fundraisers and the impact of their contributions

8. Personal Goal Fundraisers 

Personal goal fundraisers encourage supporters to set individual challenges or milestones and collect donations for achieving them. Examples include weight loss goals, learning a new skill, or completing a personal project. Supporters can create online fundraising pages, share their progress updates, and ask friends and family to support their efforts.

Tips for personal goal fundraisers:

  • Provide templates and resources for supporters to create compelling fundraising pages
  • Encourage supporters to set realistic and achievable goals
  • Offer virtual coaching or support to help supporters stay on track
  • Celebrate and acknowledge supporters who achieve their goals

9. Volunteer Fundraisers 

Volunteer fundraisers allow supporters to pledge their time and skills to your nonprofit in exchange for donations. Supporters can commit to volunteering a certain number of hours or completing specific tasks, and collect donations based on their time commitment. This idea works well for nonprofits with a strong volunteer base and a variety of volunteer opportunities.

Tips to keep in mind for volunteer fundraisers:

  • Provide a range of volunteer opportunities that appeal to different skills and interests
  • Create a system for tracking volunteer hours and donations
  • Offer recognition and rewards for top volunteers and fundraisers
  • Share stories and impact updates to show the value of volunteer contributions

Recommended: Get help building your volunteer base with our guide on how to recruit volunteers for a nonprofit.

10. Team or Department Challenges 

Team or department challenges are a great way to engage corporate partners and create a sense of friendly competition. Teams or departments within a company can compete to see who can raise the most funds or volunteer the most hours for your nonprofit. This idea works especially well for nonprofits with existing corporate partnerships or employee giving programs.

Tips for a successful department or team challenge:

  • Provide clear guidelines and support materials for teams to use in their fundraising efforts
  • Encourage teams to get creative with their fundraising ideas and team-building activities
  • Offer prizes or recognition for top-performing teams
  • Celebrate the collective impact of all teams and thank them for their support


Peer-to-peer fundraising is a versatile and effective strategy for nonprofits looking to engage supporters and raise more funds. By implementing one or more of these ten ideas, you can create a sense of community, tap into new audiences, and achieve your fundraising goals. Remember to focus on storytelling, personalization, and providing a clear call-to-action in all your peer-to-peer fundraising efforts. With creativity, planning, and support, your nonprofit can harness the power of peer-to-peer fundraising to make a greater impact on the world.

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