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JustGiving reveals physical activities with biggest YOY rises in popularity

A hand washes a car window with a soapy sponge. By Tima Miroschnichenko on pexels

Data from the fundraising platform, JustGiving, has revealed the top 10 physical activities which have seen the biggest increase in popularity year-on-year, with sponsored skips and fundraising car washes the top two.

Altogether the top 10 physical fundraising activities have raised more than £80mn for charitable causes on the platform over the last 12 months.

Sponsored skips have seen a 286% increase on Justgiving, raising almost £230,000, whilst car washes grew by 47%, bringing in £47,000.


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Top 10 biggest growing physical fundraisers

  1. Skipping – 287% – £230,000 raised  
  2. Car wash – 47% – £47,000 raised 
  3. Walking – 42% – £57mn raised
  4. Skydive – 42% – £5.7mn raised 
  5. Squats – 42% – £300,000 raised 
  6. Ultramarathon – 34% – £1.6mn raised
  7. Hiking – 33% – £3.7mn raised 
  8. Football – 30% – £8.4mn raised
  9. Tough mudders – 28% – £1.7mn raised
  10. Ironman – 18% – almost £2mn raised

UK areas that raised the most money in 2023

  1. Norwich 
  2. Bristol
  3. Reading 
  4. Cambridge
  5. Manchester
  6. Nottingham 
  7. Preston
  8. Cheltenham 
  9. York
  10. Glasgow

At the same time, a poll of 2,000 people commissioned by JustGiving, has found that nearly 32% of UK adults have never fundraised for charity.

Reasons given included nearly one in three (32%) do not like asking people for money, while 15% said they didn’t have the time. One in 10 haven’t got involved because of their social anxiety, and 8% struggle to come up with ideas or activities to raise money.

JustGiving has created a ‘Spin the Wheel’ fundraising idea generator to help inspire those stuck with how they can support good causes.

Pascale Harvie, JustGiving President and General Manager said:

“The enormous generosity that we saw throughout 2023 made it a record-breaking year for giving, with more than 18 million donations to almost 20,000 UK charities.


“Every individual, who fundraised or donated, made an enormous difference to so many great causes and we feel privileged to play our part, by providing a platform for people to fundraise through.


“We understand how tricky it can be to come up with a fundraising activity that is right for you, so we hope that our Fundraiser Finder quiz will help people of all ages and abilities match with an activity that best meets their needs and inspires them to fundraise, for a cause close to their hearts.”

The research also found that 20% have done activities in the last 12 months that could have formed part of a fundraiser, such as running, cycling or baking.

Why people fundraise

Among the reasons for supporting charities, either by taking part or sponsoring, four in 10 said they do so because they want to make a difference. A further 29% think everyone needs to play their part, while 37 % are driven by a cause close to their heart.

The research also found 36% will donate to a cause they know is important to friends or family, and as a result, 62% would be willing to sponsor a charity they don’t typically support if someone they knew was fundraising for it.

Giving insights

The charities people donated to most on JustGiving in 2023 were those related to cancer, children, mental health and humanitarian efforts.

Its recent study, conducted via OnePoll, also found UK adults give around £83 a year to causes, with 26% making monthly contributions.

Among the most common ways people support charities are donating items and clothes (57%), in addition to purchasing from charity shops (40%). As well as putting loose change in collection tins (40%), paying a direct debit (26%) and contributing via fundraising pages to support other people’s efforts (22%).

Looking forward, bake sales (12%), car boot sales (11%), step targets (10%) and hosting a pub quiz (8%) are activities people would consider doing to raise money.