your course

Discovery course 27+ years  & Discovery mature 40+ years

If you are fundraising - it can seem a little daunting at first.  The key is to start early - as soon as you book on your course.

Funding is like doing an Outward Bound course, the more effort you put in, the more returns you are likely to receive.  Planning is the key to successful fundraising.

Email us with your name, address and contact phone number to request a funding pack to be posted to you or call Sue Childs - Funding Advisor now on 0800 688 927.  Sue helps people with fundraising on a regular basis and is only to happy to help guide you on your way.

Our three-step fundraising guide

If you are not sure where to start with your fundraising effort, don't worry, we've got you covered. Our three step guide will help you put together a plan.



Work out how much you can pay from the savings you already have and then create a plan on how you can save/fundraise the difference.  Check out our student fundraising stories and fundraising ideas to help you get inspired!

Set yourself the challenge to raise $1,000 in a week

  • Day 1: Ask 3 family members to sponsor you for $70
  • Day 2: Ask 10 friends or neighbours to contribute $20
  • Day 3: Sell $50 of unwanted items on Trade Me
  • Day 4: Ask 5 co-workers to contribute $20 or set up a contribution box where people can freely donate
  • Day 5: Ask 5 people from your sporting, hobby group or church, to contribute $10
  • Day 6: Ask your boss for a company donation of $350 or better yet, ask if they will match what you raise
  • Day 7: Ask 2 businesses that you frequently visit to personally contribute $20 (try your barber/hairdresser, dry cleaner, restaurant or cafe where you eat lunch each day!)




Did you know there are over 500 community and service groups in New Zealand – many of whom have supported thousands of Outward Bound participants over the last 50 years? We encourage you to write to your local service clubs, businesses and community groups for fundraising assistance.  See below for letter writing tips.

Write to local service Clubs

Rotary, Lions and the RSA are three of our biggest supporters, but many communities have other service groups who can also help. Find your local service clubs at:

Send the service club proof of your enrolment (copy of your enrolment letter) and a fundraising letter asking for their support. Call the service club a week later to check they got your letter and find out when you will hear back from them.

Contact your local Businesses

Many participants have approached locally owned businesses and experienced fantastic success. Visit the business yourself and ask to speak with the manager. Take proof of enrolment and a fundraising letter with you to support what you say - if the manager is unavailable you can leave this information for them to read (remember to call them a week later to check they have received your letter). Offering to work for a donation is a good way of gaining their support - wash windows, clean their fridge, or deliver flyers.  See tips below for what to say.

Community Groups

If you belong to a community group like a sports club, church or choir, ask if they have any fundraising ideas such as holding an event for you. Community groups are experts in fundraising!

There may be Trusts in your community that support Outward Bound.  Contact Sue to find out more 0800 688 927.

From the Marlborough region? Click here to learn about funding from The Marlborough First Light Foundation.



You must have completed Steps 1 and 2 and can show us that you have put in your best effort (whether you have been successful or not). Send us the following 4 things no later than 8 weeks before your course starts (the same time your medical form is due).

  1. Fundraising Support Application - download the form here or contact us to send you a form 0800 688 927.  This tells us about your fundraising progress.
  2. Your contribution towards your course fees - if not already paid.
  3. Pick up two different Gaming Trust Application Forms from your local gaming site (usually a local pub) but do not fill them out - we will.
  4. Copies of all fundraising letters, applications and emails you have sent - including any replies you have received.

Important Notes: Funding does not include travel, gear, medical or insurance costs. You may be asked to complete a 'Financial Assistance Form' - this tells us about your financial situation.

Asking for money


When asking for money it is important to be clear about why you want to go on a course, and what you would like to get out of it. Be prepared with the following information - it will make it easier when you come to ask for fundraising support:

  • What the course is, what you hope to achieve and why you want to go.
  • When the course starts, the length of the course and how much it costs.
  • Information about yourself such as your interests, cultural or community activities you are involved in, school or sporting achievements.
  • How much you can afford to put towards the course and the fundraising you have done or are planning to do before the course.
  • Any relevant personal references.

If you are a Work and Income NZ client you may be eligible for funding through them. Contact your Case Manager for more information.Your course cannot be paid for using a student loan.



Introduction/Paragraph one:

Mention a bit about yourself including, name, age, the region you live in, who you live with and what you do e.g. student/work. Explain that you have enrolled on an Outward Bound course and are seeking funding support (enclose a copy of your registration letter to show that you are enrolled).

Paragraph Two:

Give more details about the specific course enrolled in e.g. name of course, date of the course, length of the course and the cost of the course. Explain why you want to go and what you feel you will gain from the experience of attending Outward Bound.

Paragraph Three:

Outline what you are doing to fundraise for your course and include the progress you have made so far. Be sure to include any planned fundraising activities that you have coming up and a little bit of detail about these activities. E.g. Every 2nd Saturday I am doing a car wash at the local farmers market.

Example from a student who attended in January:
For a start I asked everybody that knew me from family, friends and workmates if they could give me an item out of their pantry, with all these goods, I made up two huge grocery hampers and sold raffles for them as a fundraiser. I think I raised about $400.00!!

Paragraph Four:

Thank them for their time and consideration. Mention that you would be happy to come and speak with the club and learn more about the club and how you may be able to help in the future. Be sure to include your contact details and the best way to get a hold of you.

Fundraising ideas

  • Ask your family and friends to donate.
  • Ask for a donation instead of birthday or Christmas gifts.
  • Ask your employer to sponsor you (our courses are tax deductible as a training expense).
  • Contact your local newspaper to profile your goal and ask for support.
  • Sell unwanted items or hand-made crafts on Trade Me.
  • Mow the lawns or wash the cars of all your neighbours in your street - it's a great way to get to know them too!
  • Trivia night - invite 20 people for $10 each.
  • Movie night - invite 20 people for double the ticket price and sweeten the deal with some lollies or home-made popcorn.
  • Sponsored fun run/walk - ask for $2 for each km and boost your fitness!
  • Sausage sizzle - ask your local butcher for a deal on sausages.
  • Mufti or themed dress-up day at school or work - ask for a gold coin donation

A Guide To Supporting Outward Bound For Life

How is Outward Bound funded and what do we need support for? This brochure outlines some of the ways you can help us, continue to be a turning point in people's lives. For example:

  • Setting up a scholarship
  • Donating
  • Becoming a member
  • Buying a brick in our foundation pathway
  • Leaving a bequest
  • Making a major gift.

Download the Support us brochure here.


Fundraising Stories

Need some more inspiration for you fundraising efforts? Check out the real life stories below! For more stories click here.

Hannah Clow - MBS October 2011

28 November 2013

Hannah discusses the many ways she received money to aid her getting on a OB course, find out more here. Read more

Lily Heathmore - Fundraising tips

01 December 2014

Lily fundraised towards her Classic course. Find out how she reached her goal. Read more

Surinder Edwards - A fundraising story

01 April 2015

Surinder used all of her resources and called upon her networks to make her Masters course a reality. Read more

Ruari Moran - A fundraising story

01 March 2015

Ruari combined some of his personal savings with fundraising to get himself on a OB course. Read more


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