action against hunger

Five games to play in the interval

The profit you make is the measure of success at your fundraising event, so how can you push it that little bit further? Providing refreshments and running a raffle are a given, but why not play one of these games during the break, too?

Remind attendees prior to the event to bring a bit of extra cash along if you're going to use one of these interval ideas. Decide which might best suit the event you are running and the audience attending.

1. Joke competition

Any closet commedians in your audience? Samantha Searle, PTA member, St George's Primary School, Kent: 'One idea we are going to run at our next event is a joke competition. You explain how the competition works at the beginning of the night, hand out paper, and people pay £1 per joke to enter, writing their joke down before submitting it. You then review them all, pick out the best three, and read those out to the audience (or get the shortlisted entrants to tell their own joke!). The audience vote which one will be crowned the winner. They did it at a comedy club I went to and it worked brilliantly.'

2. Heads or tails

Heads or tails is a popular game that only takes about five minutes to play. Caren Shortall, treasurer, Friends of Milwards School, Harlow: 'People pay £1 to play. Once they have paid, they stand up so we know who is playing. The quizmaster then flips a coin, at which point, participants either choose heads - where they need to make bunny ears - or tails, where they make a tail with their hands. Whoever gets it wrong, sits down. Keep playing until there's one person left standing - they win half the cash and your charity keeps the other half. When we advertise the event, we always say that there will be a raffle and heads and tails on the night so people bring money with them. This usually adds an extra £30 to our takings.'

3. Spaghetti tower

Use as an icebreaker during a social evening. Each table pays a set fee to receive a spaghetti construction kit - a small bunch of uncooked spaghetti and a metre of sellotape. Teams have five minutes to build the highest, free-standing spaghetti tower. Give competitive adults the chance to purchase extra height - £2 per centimetre. Tallest tower wins! Give the winning team a bottle of bubbly as a prize. You'll be surprised how competitive this can get…  

4. Roll a £1

The aim of the game is to roll a coin nearest to a bottle to win (preferably alcoholic if adults are involved!). Clearly mark the start line, with the bottle positioned about five metres away. Jackie Turner, chair, Friends of Rushwick School, Worcester said: 'Roll a £1 is a good game for events if you have lots of men and alcohol! Buy or get a bottle of something alcoholic donated. Put the bottle on the floor and get people to roll a £1 coin towards it. The coin which is closest (without hitting the bottle) at the end is the winner. Men who've had a few to drink will keep trying to win it (macho pride) even if they spend more than it costs to buy! This event was part of a frog racing night to raise funds for our local cricket club. There were about 80 people there and I think it raised about £50. It was done at the end of the evening when everyone had had a few drinks!'

5. Table quiz 

Run a picture quiz, themed to suit your event and audience, printing 9-12 famous faces, cartoon characters or film locations onto A4 paper. Ask people to pay £1 to enter, writing down their name and answers. Collect the sheets in after the interval - the winner can receive a prize (preferably donated) or a percentage of takings. Alternatively use anagrams - search the internet for examples to make your life easier! Don't make the quiz too easy!

What interval games do you play that yield a great profit? Drop the Let's Get Fundraising! team an email. 

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