How to Organise a Charity Football Match

Whether you’ve been considering this for a while, or have recently seen a cause that has pulled on your heart strings, planning a football fundraiser to raise money for charity is a great way to bring people together. From encouraging both players and spectators to come together and be involved in something meaningful, to raising as much money as possible to help those in need, there are a number of reasons why you might want to organise a charity football match this year. 

However, similar to organising any event, there is a lot to plan and consider when preparing a football fundraiser. But to help take some of the stress out of planning, our helpful guide will walk you through the most important elements to consider when you’re planning a charity football match. We’ll also provide some of our favourite ideas that might help to encourage people to come along to your event.

Football Fundraising Tips

Whether it’s setting a date and location, or looking at how you can get the word out about the event, whatever stage you’re at in the process of planning your football fundraiser, read our guide below to ensure you haven’t missed out any important steps. 

Plan a Location

Arguably one of the most important elements to consider when planning any event, it’s advisable that organising an appropriate location for it to take place should be one of the first things you do. As this will help you lay the foundations for the occasion. 

If you’re not sure where to organise your charity football match, or who to contact, we advise getting in touch with a local sports club first, as these will likely have the facilities and pitch needed to host a charity football match. However, if there isn’t a sports club in your community, a school or university might be your best bet. These often have pitches used by students and teachers for PE and extra curricular activities, which you may be able to use for your fundraiser. 

Rather than planning a set date, reaching out to venues to check availability for your charity game first might help you find the best date to host the event. This is because some locations may only have availability on certain days. Nevertheless, it’s a good idea to have a rough, flexible date or month for your charity football match to take place. But we recommend contacting places well in advance of your rough date, as, particularly during the warmer months, (which is a good time to host the fundraiser as there's less chance of bad weather) football pitches can get booked up quickly.

If you’ve tried reaching out to the above but haven’t been successful, the final option is your nearest public park. As this is overseen by the council, we advise checking the availability of this first, as there might be a community event already in the works for the date you’re considering.

PRO TIP: Once you’ve found a location, it’s a good idea to visit this a couple of times ahead of the big day. This will give you a good idea of what you’re working with - including the size of the pitch and space for spectators, and will allow you to plan around this accordingly.

Establish Teams

We advise waiting until you’ve found out how many people want to get involved before you set up teams for the charity football match. Waiting until the numbers are set in stone should give you a clear idea of how many players’ will be on each team, as well as how many teams to divide the players into. To help you gather donations for your charity, it might be worth encouraging those who want to play to make a small donation once they’ve expressed their interest in taking part, or even on the day.

Finding players might be easier if you already have your own football team - as it won’t involve searching for that many new people to get involved. However, if this isn’t an option, or you would prefer to make it fair by only involving those who haven’t played football before so no one is at an advantage, try asking friends or family members if they would be willing to take part.

If you still need more players, we would recommend getting the word out into your community. This could be done by creating leaflets and posters asking for people to take part. It’s a good idea to place the flyers where they will be seen, such as on community notice board in a supermarket or cafe. You might also want to post on social media community groups asking for participants. If you do decide to advertise for players, try and aim to do this at least a few weeks in advance, which should give people enough time to reach out to you ahead of the big day.

PRO TIP: Once you’ve established who would like to be involved in your football fundraiser, it’s advisable to find out what each of the participants strengths are by giving them a simple questionnaire to complete. This could include questions on how they describe themselves, along with their own preferences for the position they’d like to play. Doing this will help you to assign all positions in advance, as well as helping to ensure everyone is happy and is given a fair opportunity to play to the best of their ability,

Create a Schedule

Once the teams are set, we would recommend numbering these ahead of your charity football match, as this can help to establish which teams will be going head-to-head. For example, if you’re looking at planning multiple matches, either to be played at the same time, or one after the other, Team 1 can play Team 2 in one match, and Team 3 vs Team 4 for the other. Naming the teams this way can also help you easily keep track of scoring.

Once the winning teams are established, we advise hosting a final where the two successful teams will play against one another. After all, having a final playoff is a great way to get spectators involved. 

PRO TIP: Take care not to leave essential tasks until the last minute, which include keeping your event safe by organising first aid, as well as organising a referee. We also advise keeping a close eye on the weather for that day. If it looks like it might rain, prepare for this by looking into hiring some waterproof ponchos in case the attendees don’t bring their own waterproofs.

Market the Fundraiser

There are multiple ways you can promote your football fundraiser. And it’s advisable to start putting feelers out as soon as a date is set. Here are a few ways you can get the word out.

  • Promote the match in social media community groups and encourage others to share the event with their friends and family.
  • Tell your friends and family to let as many people in the community as possible know that you’re hosting a football fundraiser. 
  • Contact local news outlets and let them know about your charity game. But don’t worry if you don’t feel like you have the necessary pitching skills. Instead, you might want to hire a local freelancer or agency to write and email a press release and send this to the relevant places, but this would come at a cost. Alternatively, if there’s a university nearby, write to the student paper and get them involved.
  • Never underestimate the value of print advertising. Create leaflets and posters to leave wherever there is a community notice board.

PRO TIP: It might be worth asking the venue who have provided you with the pitch - whether that be a sports club, school or somewhere else - to advertise your event across their social platforms to help raise awareness. 

Consider Sponsorship Methods

A quick way of gathering sponsors, we recommend setting up a fundraising page online. Ideally, this should outline the charity you will be raising money for in your football fundraiser and why you’ve chosen that particular cause.

Create forms that people can fill in (either ahead of time or on the day), which will also be useful once the event comes to an end, as it will give you an idea of how much money has been raised for your chosen charity.

Top Football Fundraiser Ideas

Once you’ve organised the basics of the event, such as the date, location, teams and schedule, if you still have some time left, this gives you the opportunity to be more creative and encourage more of the community to attend your charity football match. Below are a few ideas for some extra elements you can incorporate into your fundraiser.

Consider Simple Fundraising Methods

Although it’s likely some people will donate through pure generosity, since you’ve gone through all the effort of organising the event for a charity that might be close to your heart, we recommend considering some of the simple methods you can use to gather as many funds as you can for the cause. 

If you’re looking to gather extra donations, there are a few ways you could do this, after all, every donation helps. For instance, it might be worth charging a small admission fee for entries. In addition, you could also see if local businesses will come along to your event and promote it to their customers. Then, a classic choice that usually seems to go down as a success at most community events, there’s always the option to run a raffle and encourage small, local retailers to donate prizes.

Organise Food and Entertainment

It might be a good idea to organise a food or beverage truck for the day, and even organise some entertainment for half-time. If you’re successful in doing this, you might want to consider including the fact there will be food or hot drinks available in promotional materials to help encourage more of the local community to come to your charity match, spectate and make donations.  

Plan a Celebrity Appearance

If this is possible, try and feature a ‘star guest’ in your football fundraiser by encouraging a local celebrity to make an appearance, or, even better, get them involved in the match. The best way to do this is to contact their agents and outline clearly what you’re doing. Celebrities are likely to have busy schedules so we advise making contact well in advance of the day. Don’t forget to include this in your promotional materials if you’re successful in getting a celebrity to attend.

Football Charity Fundraising at Avec Sport

As keen charity supporters, at Avec Sport, we’ve done our bit by donating to a meaningful cause close to our hearts. Streatham FC is a community football team set up to help reduce the number of young people involved in crime. Many of the young people in this club come from single-parent or low income households. Sadly, the club, which accepts donations, struggles to gain access to the suitable facilities. We’ve helped Streatham FC by donating our kits to ensure all the children in the club are equipped with the appropriate gear to do what they love, regardless of their background or household income.

If you’re looking to do something similar and want to organise something good for a cause by planning a charity football match, we advise preparing all your football team kits in advance. This will give you more time to raise valuable donations for your charity. Our gear at Avec Sport covers adult male and female players, as well as juniors - enabling those of any age to get involved with your match. Kits can also be personalised with sponsor logos and team names for an all-round professional feel.