By Susan Donaldson, B.A. (Hons), Animal Campaigner
You do a challenge for charity to help animals. There are a number of types of challenges, which can include terrifying endeavours, such as parachute jumps, wing walks, bungee jumps, or endurance challenges.
One type of endurance challenge is the mass participation challenge event, which involves anything from running, to swimming, to scrambling through mud on your knees.
This page tells you all about the challenge for charity events in the UK, and how you, and animal charities, can get involved.
This is where large numbers of people take part in the same event at the same time. Participants can choose to get sponsored for any charity registered with the event.
There are a number of these events staged every year, such as runs, walks, obstacle courses, swims, bike rides, colour runs, triathlons, treks, and more.
There are typically two routes into such an event: gaining a charity place, or paying for your own entry place.
Applying for a charity entry place: In most events, a charity pays for a limited number of entry places up front. People then apply for those places, agreeing to raise money for the charity by asking people to sponsor them. Sometimes people with charity places are required to raise a minimum amount for the charity.
Paying for your own entry place: In oversubscribed events, there is a ballot people have to enter to try to gain an entry place. Those who get one pay their entrants fee to the event organisers. With other events, entrants are first come, first served.
If you purchased your own entry place, you are normally free to raise money for whatever animal charity or cause you choose, even if it is not registered with the event.
If you choose an animal charity not registered with the event, contact the animal charity directly, telling them you have purchased your own entry place in an event and wish to use it to raise money for them. Many animal charities and rescues will provide you with support and help.
There are different packages offered to charities depending on the event, including a basic package where they are required to pay up front for each entry place they want. Sometimes charities have to enter a ballot to try to win entry places (that they still have to pay for) in oversubscribed events. Rules differ from event to event.
On this page, you will find just a few of the many mass participation challenge events organised each year in the UK. To find others local to you, search online through charity search engines, so you raise money for animal charities while searching.
There are many similar events organised in other countries too.
There are other challenge events you can do for animal charities, such as zip wires, abseiling, skydiving, total wipe out, and zombie escape.
The London Marathon is a hugely popular event in the UK’s capital city. You must be over 18 years old to take part.
There are two entry routes:
For charities to take part, they must enter a charity ballot. Charities who register their interest in advance will be contacted with details on how to enter the next charity ballot once available. There are different packages that charities can purchase, including a golden bond and silver bond package.
Tough Mudder is a muddy obstacle course challenge. The events are run in London, the Midlands, Scotland, Yorkshire, South West, North West, and Leicestershire.
You can participate if you are aged 14 years old or above, but if you are aged 14–17 years old, you must have a chaperone.
In most locations, you can choose between obstacle courses of five miles and twelve miles. There is also an overnight eight-hour obstacle course and an extreme overnight course in Las Vegas.
You can take part on your own, or as part of a team.
There are two entry routes into the event:
The Bath Half Marathon is a 13.1 mile event that takes place in Bath, Somerset.
You can enter either through gaining a charity place, or by paying for a place yourself.
If you gain a charity place, the charity will have paid your entry fee up front. In return for a charity place, you must raise money for the charity through getting sponsored to take part in the event.
If you purchase your own entry place, you can still raise money for charity – either one that is registered with the event, or one of your choice that is not. You need to contact the animal charity directly, as it is not done through the organisers of the event.
Here are the FAQs for all entrants.
For animal charities who wish to get involved in this event, here is the page you need.
You will find a downloadable General Charity Entry Packages Outline, and an Official Charity Scheme Information Pack, as well as a charity application form to apply for ‘Gold Bond’, ‘Silver Bond’ or ‘Bronze Bond’ reserved charity entries.
The Great North Run in Newcastle Up Tyne is a 13.1 mile half-marathon. There is also a 5K run, as well as a 4k run and 1.5k mini run for children. Charity places are only available for the half-marathon.
The main run is open to people aged 17 years and above. The 5k run is for people aged 14 and over. Youngsters aged 9 to 16 years can enter the Junior Run, and the Mini Run for ages 3 – 8 years.
You can either:
1). Try to win your own entry place by entering the general ballot and paying an entry fee if you are offered a place
2). Apply for a place through an animal charity that is registered with the event, by agreeing to raise sponsorship money for them.
Find animal charities registered with the run.
It says on the FAQ page of the site that if you win a place in the ballot, you do not need to run for the associated charities listed on the entry form or website. You can run and raise money for any charity/cause of your choice. All you need to do is contact your chosen charity directly.
The day before the run, you can watch the Great North City Games, which sees world-class athletes from around the globe compete alongside the very best of home-grown talent.
Animal charities who wish to participate in the Great North Run, so that runners can raise money for them, can find a helpful charity prospectus.
There are Platinum, Gold, Silver, Silver, Bronze+, and Bronze packages, with the Bronze option being where you pay for each individual place you would like to reserve (minimum 5).
The Great North Swim offers swims of ½ Mile, 1 Mile, 2 Miles, 5K & 10K. Charity places are for the 1-mile distance only.
The Great North Swim takes place in Lake Windermere, in the beautiful Lake District in Cumbria. There is also a Great North Swim Run at Brockhole on Windermere.
You can pay for your own entry place and then raise money for an animal charity or cause of your choice, whether they are registered with the event or not. Just contact your chosen animal charity direct.
You can alternatively enter by applying for a charity place with an animal charity registered with the event. You must then raise money for the charity through getting people to sponsor you.
See the FAQs for more details.
Charities interested in participating so that people can raise money for them through sponsorship should look at the Charity Prospectus.
There you will find there are charity categories: Official, Supporting, and Partner. The Partner option is where you pay for each individual place you would like to reserve (minimum 5).
The Great Scottish Run is a 10 km and half-marathon run across the city of Glasgow.
If you purchase your own entry place, you can raise money for any charity/cause of your choice. The charity does not have to be registered with the event. In this case, you need to contact your chosen charity directly.
See the FAQs for more details.
Animal charities can find out how to purchase places by looking at the charity prospectus.
There are many other events held by The Great Run Company, including swims, in many different locations throughout the UK. Click on the distances below to see which locations they are available in.
Animal charities, who wish to participate in any of the Great Run events, and great swim events, can find details in the charity prospectus.
On the Great Run website’s FAQ page, it says that entrants who do not have charity places but have purchased their own entry places are welcome to raise money for any charity they choose, not just the charities registered with them. They should contact their chosen charity direct.
With the Kiltwalk any charity in Scotland can register for free (in most events, charities have to pay for each entry they want up front), so they keep every penny you raise for them and do not need to pay the organisers anything.
You can enter through an animal charity registered with the event, or you can purchase your own entry place from the event organisers. If you choose to do the latter, you can raise money for any animal charity or cause you choose, whether they are registered with the event or not. If your chosen charity is not registered, contact the charity direct.
Find an animal charity to raise money for, that is registered with Kiltwalk.
There are three different walks to choose from, one of which children can take part in.
The Kiltwalk takes place in four locations: Glasgow, Aberdeen, Dundee, Edinburgh.
Get your charity involved with the Kiltwalk.
You can apply for limited animal charity places across various events.
Alternatively, you can apply to enter the ballot to purchase your own entries. There is an entrants fee to pay to the event organisers if you are successful in the ballot.
You can still support a charity if you gain your own entry place through the ballot. You can either support an animal charity or cause, whether it is registered with the event or not. If it is not, contact your chosen animal charity direct.
Here are the Charity FAQs.
For charities wishing to register, there is a charities ballot to enter. Successful charities have the option to purchase entry places for the events.
The Big Half is a one-day event in London that offers a host of running distances, from a challenging half-marathon to a free one-mile course.
You can either enter online and purchase your own entry place, or you can apply to run for a charity registered with the event.
You can apply to run for charity, or purchase your own place. Even if you purchase your own place, you can still run for charity.
Here are their FAQs.
Charities must enter a charity ballot to secure places. As with other challenge for charity events, if entrants have paid for their own entries, they may wish to use the event to raise money for your charity, even if it is not registered with the event.
The London 10,000 is a 10 km event which starts and finishes in St James’s Park and uses Green Park as its assembly area, all in the UK's capital city.
You must be aged 15 years or above to participate.
You can either enter online and pay a fee to the event organisers for your own entry place, or you can apply for an animal charity entry place and raise money for the charity through sponsorship.
By paying for your own entry place, you are free to raise money for any animal charity or cause you wish, not just ones registered with the event. If the animal charity or cause you choose is not registered with the event, contact them directly.
If you would like to apply for a charity place, you can search for animal charities registered with the event.
Find FAQs here.
Charities wishing to purchase entries, so people can take part whilst raising money for them through getting sponsored, can do so on the site itself.
Swim Serpentine, is a 1/2 mile, 1 mile, 2 mile, and Super Six open water swimming event. It is held at the Serpentine in Hyde Park in London.
If you have your own entry place, you are free to raise money through sponsorship for any animal charity or cause, whether they are registered with the event or not. If they are not, contact them directly.
Here are event FAQs.
I am currently unable to find how charities purchase places in this event.
Some events say on their websites that even if the event isn’t publicised as a charity event, you are welcome to use your own purchased entry place to get sponsored and raise money for an animal charity or rescue of your choice.
Just contact the animal charity or rescue directly and then get people to sponsor you to do it. It just won’t be officially done through the event organiser because no charities are registered with the event.
For example, the Colour Obstacle Rush, (Brighton, Windsor, Wolverhampton, Milton Keynes, London, Newcastle, Derby West, Bath, Sheffield, Liverpool, and Exeter), say that although they are not charity events, participants are welcome to raise money for their chosen charity. They even provide sponsor forms, which are downloadable from their sites.
The Westminster Mile in London also says on its website that although charities cannot purchase places in the event, entrants who have purchased places are welcome to gain sponsorship to raise money for a charity of their choice.
Marathons, Half Marathons And Running Challenge For Charity Events:
Zip Wire Challenge For Charity Events
Abseiling Challenge For Charity Events
Sky Diving Challenge For Charity Events
Click And jump Skydive – options to jump with the Red Devils
Although the challenges for charity mentioned on this page have big rather big ones, there are much smaller ones.
For instance, you could do a challenge for charity where you get sponsored by your spouse, and/or other family members / friends, to be silent for a whole 24 hours.
You could get sponsored to do an embarrassing challenge for charity, where every movement you made for 24 hours had to be in the style of expressive contemporary dance.
There are many small challenges for charity you could come up with to raise money to help animals. They can be a lot of fun, and children are often enthusiastic to get involved as well.
On this site, there are many varied ways you can help animals and help stop cruelty. In fact, there are so many ways that there is something for every personality type, no matter what their circumstances.
If you would like to learn more about why we so urgently need to help stop animal suffering, please see this website. It will allow you to broaden your knowledge of many types of worldwide animal abuse, giving you the ability to help animals by spreading awareness and answering questions people may have. Please be aware that you may find the information distressing, especially if you are a more sensitive person.
One great way to help animals is to share the information you have seen on this website. Doing so means more people could help stop animal cruelty, and that would make you responsible for more animals being saved from suffering. Together, we can help people help animals.