Fundraising news, ideas and inspiration for professional charity fundraisers

2018 Charity Christmas ads round up

2018 Charity Christmas ads round up

Here’s the UK Fundraising selection of the charity and charity-related ads released so far. A fine selection box of film featuring charities including The Salvation Army, Dogs Trust, and Shooting Star Chase.


The Childhood Trust

The Childhood Trust’s poignant Christmas ad is a reminder that for many children there is no Christmas. It follows a seasonal worker who dresses up as Santa Claus in a shopping centre’s Grotto, handing out gifts to children, before taking his paycheck and heading home to his children, where there are no Christmas cards, only debt reminders, and the only decorations are children’s drawings.


St Mungo’s

St Mungo’s film was made over two days on the streets of London by first-time director Josh Carpenter. It shows homeless people dressed for the jobs they could do in the future. Paul Williams, the Oscar-winning composer, donated the track for free. The film is running on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.


Dogs Trust

Dogs Trust’s humorous Christmas ad has a serious message – that dogs aren’t Christmas presents. Using its original line of A dog is for life, not just for Christmas, it is encouraging people to think again and not buy a dog as a present, showing actors treating Christmas presents like dogs – taking a games console for a walk, throwing a ball for a hairdryer, trying to get a drone to sit and saying goodnight to a bottle of perfume. It also features a voiceover from Mel Giedroyc.


Christian Aid

Christian Aid is asking people to be a peacemaker by donating £25 to its Christmas Aid campaign. The money will help support the charity’s peace making partners around the world.


Cash for Kids

Cash for Kids, Bauer Radio’s network of local charities, is asking people to buy an extra gift for the charity to give to a child who otherwise won’t have any this Christmas. Its appeal stars Reliant the Robin seeking out the children who need help so he can tell Santa about them. Gifts can be dropped off at selected B&M stores, plus all branches of Wickes, Bensons for Beds and Harveys across the UK.


Shooting Star Chase

Shooting Star Chase’s Christmas advert features ten-year-old Summer (also main image) who has been supported by Shooting Star Chase since she was 18 months old as she gets ready for a special festive performance. The advert highlights the importance of sharing magical moments with loved ones over the festive period. And highlights how the charity’s Hospice at Home service helps supported children like Summer and their families. This is the second time a Shooting Star Chase supported family has featured in an alternative Christmas advert produced by Shape History. In 2017 the social change agency produced an advert, #FirstChristmas, which raised awareness of families facing their first Christmas without a loved one.


Cats Protection

In 2017, Evie and Genie won the National Cat Awards due to the incredible bond between the pair during 11-year-old Evie’s gruelling treatment for bone cancer. In 2018, Cats Protection’s Christmas animation, Genie’s Christmas Wish, tells their tale.



Small Charities Coalition

This Christmas, urges the Small Charities Coalition, support #SmallButVital Charities. Their advert squeezes lots of different small and local charities, each named with their Twitter handle.

And all are accompanied by the singing of the London Gay Men’s Chorus.


CLIC Sargent

CLIC Sargent’s #KidSanta appeal asks people to help families facing financial problems because their child is suffering from cancer. The charity knows that when their child has cancer, families spend on average an extra £600 a month, and around 61% of parents will end up in debt. It stars Ellie Mae, who has recovered from cancer as Kid Santa.

Spurgeon’s Children’s Charity

Here it is, Merry Christmas… but not everybody’s having fun. 

Spurgeons Children’s Charity, which supports vulnerable children and families across England, uses contrasting images of Christmas peace and contentment with sadder-eyed children, smiling Santas with sad Santas, with the aim of showing that many children do not get to enjoy a happy Christmas. 

The charity states that in the UK 4.1 million children will wake up this Christmas morning to another day in poverty: that’s an average of nine children in every classroom of 30.

The video urges viewers to “be the light for vulnerable children and families this Christmas.”



The Salvation Army

‘In from the Cold’ tells the story of The Salvation Army’s work with the homeless. Using footage shot in London and the charity’s own footage from the last cold snap, the DRTV campaign encourages the UK public to give a donation of £19, telling the story of one homeless man The Salvation Army helped from the life-threatening edge of society, to get back on his feet at one their Lifehouses. The new commercial fronting the campaign is by WPN Chameleon.


The supermarkets:



Banned for being too political, Iceland’s Christmas ad highlights the palm oil issue with help from Greenpeace. The store has now stopped using palm oil in its own brand products.


John Lewis

Not a charity ad, but Elton John has donated much of his fee to his charitable foundation the Elton John Charitable Trust.



Co-op has raised £19m for good causes, through people buying its own brand products and partly, it says, by not beginning its Christmas TV ad campaign until 1 December. The company took the decision on the back of research that found 86% of shoppers think brands spend too much on their festive campaigns and nearly two-thirds (61%) want to see marketing budgets scaled back in the run-up to Christmas. Co-op has said that, in response to its findings, it will hand out almost £19m to support 4,000 local communities and charities. Its ad, now launched, focuses on the spirit of community, and being together.



Money raised from Aldi’s Kevin the Carrot-related merchandise will be going to Teenage Cancer Trust. As well as the soft toys, Christmas decorations, a story book and gift mug are also on offer.



Melanie May is a journalist and copywriter specialising in writing both for and about the charity and marketing services sectors since 2001. She can be reached via

Get free email updates

Keep up to date with fundraising news, ideas and inspiration with a weekly or daily email. [Privacy]

* We do not share your email or personal details.
" />