33-year-old pledges chastity for a year to raise £27k for charity

Is this the weirdest fund-raising stunt of recent years?

Updated: 

Man sitting on bed unable to sleep

Peter Lynagh, a 33-year-old from Melbourne in Australia, is celebrating raising £27,000 for the Australian charity, Free to Shine. The charity works to educate vulnerable Cambodian girls, to help them avoid the sex trade.

'Pete's Chastity for Charity' stunt saw this self-confessed 'player' give up sex for 12 months. So is this the weirdest way someone has found to raise money for charity?

The party-loving singleton wrote an online article explaining his reasoning. He said he was a self-confessed 'player', who saw more than 20 girls in the previous year. However, dating and partying took up so much time and energy that he wanted to break the cycle.

He was already sponsoring an 11-year-old girl in Cambodia though the Free to Shine charity, and decided to raise money for the charity at the same time. He set up a fundraising page, and the money came pouring in from friends and acquaintances.

During the year he also went to Cambodia to see the work being done by the charity, and help build houses for the kids. He saw that the money he had raised enabled them to employ two outreach workers and enroll 25 girls on an education scholarship programme.

He almost broke in the first few weeks at the beginning of 2013, but wrote that during the year he began to focus more on the rest of his life, and think more deeply about himself and his relationships. He said he is happy to have hit his target, but won't be doing it again.

Unusual fundraising

It's certainly an unusual way to have raised money for charity, but it's not the only bizarre way people have done it. Here are five of our favourites.

1. In January 2011, James Jablon, the owner of a wildlife sanctuary in Florida, spent a month living in a lion's cage with an 18-month old lioness called Lea and a ten month old lion called Ed - to raise money to support the sanctuary. He slept on a raised platform to make it hard for them to reach him in the night.

2. In November 2010, Australian businessman Nick Le Souef spent eight weeks living in a shop window with hundreds of poisonous spiders. He raised £30,000 for Variety, an Australian Children's charity.

3. In September 2012, Richland County Sheriff Leon Lott agreed to be tasered for charity. He put the opportunity into a charity auction, to raise money for a colleague who was fighting cancer, and one lucky winner paid $2,000 for the opportunity to taser him.

4. In 2009, advertising executive Sheena Matheiken pledged to wear the same dress every day for a year (although it was actually seven copies of the same dress). It was dubbed the Uniform Project, and involved her finding a new look for it every day. She used this to raise money for the Akanksha Foundation, which campaigns for more schools for children in India unable to get an education.

5. In 2012, Larry Ekstrom, a 70-year-old from Madison in Michigan, decided to raise money for multiple sclerosis - which his wife suffers from. His chosen approach was to skydive 70 times on his 70th birthday.