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Report highlights key current barriers to participating in mass fundraising events

Runners take part in a cross country race. By Farmama on Pixabay

Research from donations, fundraising and event registration platform Enthuse has revealed some of the key barriers to uptake of mass participation fundraising events – including fitness and fundraising worries, and concerns related to Covid.

Overall, 2,515 members of the UK public were surveyed for Enthuse’s study Mass Events 2022: What have we learnt?, which looks at the overall state of play for fundraising events and what the future holds.

Barriers to participating

For those people who haven’t taken part in a mass event for charity in the last five years, the most significant barrier is a lack of fitness with 43% stating this. This is also an issue for younger age groups with 28% of 18-24s sand 36% of 25-34s saying that this is a barrier for them.


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Others are put off by having to ask friends and family for money (41% of people who do not run for a cause), while even among those who participate in events and occasionally fundraise, 34% say they do not like asking for sponsorship. A further one in ten (11%) say they are too busy to raise funds. However, at the same time 45% of fundraisers said they will set a higher fundraising target next time they take part.

In addition, 55% feel more cautious about committing to events because they may get Covid themselves and have to drop out, 71% of participants say they prefer events closer to home since the pandemic, and 65% of charity event participants are signing up less than three months before their event begins.

Positive signs

However, the research also found that while only 1% of people who haven’t taken part in a charity event in the last five years have signed up for one this year, a further 8% have given it some serious consideration and 30% are open to the idea.

Two thirds of charity mass event participants also say fundraising is their biggest motivator, while over two fifths (42%) of the mass event participants questioned also stated raising awareness of charities as being a key motivator.

Commenting, Chester Mojay-Sinclare, CEO and Founder at Enthuse, offered some tips for charities:

“After the disruption to mass events over the past couple of years, 2022 was always going to present some obstacles for fundraising. The encouraging news for charities is that those who are running are mostly doing so to support good causes.


“The top advice from experienced fundraisers is to start fundraising for the 2023 events season right away, by reaching out to your full network and updating your fundraising page with a compelling story about the cause. Charities could also benefit from creating engaging content to help supporters build fitness and outline how to fundraise compassionately during a recession.”

He added:

“In fact 47% of experienced fundraisers stated that fundraising as soon as you sign up was their most important tip for new participants. When it comes to other pieces of advice, 40% said getting the word out to as many people as possible was crucial. Having a great story about why you’re taking part (32%) and a great story about the charity (30%) was also said to be important. Encouragingly for charities, nearly half (45%) of fundraisers said they will set a higher fundraising target next time they take part.


“Three of the answers on fundraising advice linked together to act as tips for before, during and after the event. Firstly, 27% recommended putting lots of effort into fundraising the week before the event, a quarter (24%) said to use official apps on the day to keep supporters involved and 28% said to not miss out on fundraising after the event to boost totals.”