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289 blogs
  • 20 May 2020
    #Square Meals Square Food Foundation is a cookery school and community kitchen in Bristol that supports adults and children across the city to access, cook, and eat good food. In their eyes, cooking is a vehicle for personal development which helps build resilience - it addresses challenges people face which stem from poverty, disability, or other circumstances beyond their control. The Foundation operates both as a Community Interest Company and as a Charity – offering paid cooking masterclasses and corporate workshops to subsidise their work with schools and community groups. They also apply to various trusts and foundations to secure grant funding for both core costs and specific projects. Before the impacts of COVID-19 began to be felt, Square Food Foundation was already working with children and families from local school Oasis Academy Connaught, where the majority of children are eligible for free school meals. The programme of weekly family workshops, teacher training, whole class cooking sessions, and an after-school cooking club aimed to improve health, provide skills, and build community resilience from the bottom up.  Not only did lockdown mean that all of Square Food’s services were suspended indefinitely, but associated school closures left stranded those families that usually rely on free school meals to feed their children.  Faced with an increased demand for access to healthy food, the Foundation’s management team sat down and worked out how they could adapt their services to serve their community.  Taking on furloughed chefs as volunteers, they stocked their kitchen with two rotating teams of professionals, capable of producing over 270 meals a day, distributed in partnership with Oasis Academy Connaught, to 54 local families. They also devised a system of DIY meal kits and online cook-along videos to provide families with an extra meal and a fun activity to bring them together at the weekend, engaging groups who may otherwise have been reluctant to ask for help. How to plan an appeal Claire Allen, Square Food’s fundraising and communications manager, began by setting up The #SquareMeals Appeal on Localgiving, and documented the work of their staff and volunteers on social media and in their email newsletter. “Until recently, our online fundraising presence has been minimal - we’ve used Localgiving more as a payment platform than as a fundraising tool. To maximise support for our #SquareMeals appeal, we knew we had to spread the word as widely as possible - setting up a page on Localgiving that was separate from our broader organisation page, and that we could add images to has helped position the appeal as its own project - and encouraged people to support.” At the beginning of this process, Claire got in touch with the Localgiving Help Desk team to find out whether she could leverage the contact details which past donors on the platform had consented to share with them. The Help Desk team walked her through the process of configuring and downloading a marketing report from within the Foundation’s account which she then used to expand the reach of her newsletter. “Having easy access to real people has been so valuable. Our workload is busier than ever right now and the super-quick turnaround, personal response and considered advice from Localgiving’s Help Desk team has made a real difference.” Their message was simple – for as long as they could, the Square Food team would be working flat-out to help their community access the food they needed – and they made it as easy as possible for potential donors to support them in their work by directing them to their Localgiving page. They received widespread local news coverage after sending out press releases to journalists and were featured in the Bristol Evening Post, Bristol 24/7, and on BBC News. Donors on Localgiving are directly encouraged to share the details of the causes they support with their own networks via a social media ‘Share’ button built into the donation process, further increasing the online reach of any organisation on the platform. Results Since launching their appeal on March 20th, Square Food Foundation has raised over £21,770 on Localgiving from over 590 donors, supplemented by £3475 worth of Gift Aid. That figure represents a 15x increase on total donations received in 2019, when their organisation raised just over £1600 on Localgiving. Square Food raises in the region of £4000 offline from their paid masterclasses and workshops on a yearly basis – a revenue stream which has been put on hold for the duration of the COVID-19 crisis. Thanks to their appeal's success, they have attracted new supporters by direct debit who will be contributing over £150 each month on an ongoing basis. Further to that, they received support from their local network – The Better Food Company raised close to £1200 on the Foundation’s behalf and provided an additional £1000 of match funding. “Localgiving has made it as easy as possible for people to support our #SquareMeals mission - and this is borne out by the incredible number of donations we’ve received from our supporters.”   All of this culminated in the high point of their campaign – a single supporter approached Square Food Foundation after having heard about their work from a friend who had donated to their online appeal. They offered to match the money raised during their campaign up to a maximum of £10,000 to help expand the Foundation’s services more widely across Bristol. “The offer of match-funding came out of nowhere and really blew us away. It’s the first time we’ve received this level of support and it felt like an important milestone for Square Food Foundation.”  What’s next for Square Food Foundation? Whilst the future of many organisations is uncertain, they intend to maintain their current rate of meal production to help families in need through to September, by which time resumption of free school meals is expected. They want to build new partnerships with schools in Bristol, modelled on their ongoing relationship with Oasis Academy Connaught – these organisations form a vital link with the communities the Foundation aims to help. What advice would the team at Square Food Foundation offer to other organisations hoping to raise funds online? “We kept our message simple, made our work easy to understand, and kept our audience updated with regular, engaging communications. We knew they were rooting for us and we wanted to say thank you by providing them with pictures, videos and daily updates so they could see for themselves the impact of their support.”  There you have it – a recipe for success.   You can find out more about Square Food's work here or donate to the #SquareMeals Appeal on Localgiving.   
    3525 Posted by Chris Breeze
  • #Square Meals Square Food Foundation is a cookery school and community kitchen in Bristol that supports adults and children across the city to access, cook, and eat good food. In their eyes, cooking is a vehicle for personal development which helps build resilience - it addresses challenges people face which stem from poverty, disability, or other circumstances beyond their control. The Foundation operates both as a Community Interest Company and as a Charity – offering paid cooking masterclasses and corporate workshops to subsidise their work with schools and community groups. They also apply to various trusts and foundations to secure grant funding for both core costs and specific projects. Before the impacts of COVID-19 began to be felt, Square Food Foundation was already working with children and families from local school Oasis Academy Connaught, where the majority of children are eligible for free school meals. The programme of weekly family workshops, teacher training, whole class cooking sessions, and an after-school cooking club aimed to improve health, provide skills, and build community resilience from the bottom up.  Not only did lockdown mean that all of Square Food’s services were suspended indefinitely, but associated school closures left stranded those families that usually rely on free school meals to feed their children.  Faced with an increased demand for access to healthy food, the Foundation’s management team sat down and worked out how they could adapt their services to serve their community.  Taking on furloughed chefs as volunteers, they stocked their kitchen with two rotating teams of professionals, capable of producing over 270 meals a day, distributed in partnership with Oasis Academy Connaught, to 54 local families. They also devised a system of DIY meal kits and online cook-along videos to provide families with an extra meal and a fun activity to bring them together at the weekend, engaging groups who may otherwise have been reluctant to ask for help. How to plan an appeal Claire Allen, Square Food’s fundraising and communications manager, began by setting up The #SquareMeals Appeal on Localgiving, and documented the work of their staff and volunteers on social media and in their email newsletter. “Until recently, our online fundraising presence has been minimal - we’ve used Localgiving more as a payment platform than as a fundraising tool. To maximise support for our #SquareMeals appeal, we knew we had to spread the word as widely as possible - setting up a page on Localgiving that was separate from our broader organisation page, and that we could add images to has helped position the appeal as its own project - and encouraged people to support.” At the beginning of this process, Claire got in touch with the Localgiving Help Desk team to find out whether she could leverage the contact details which past donors on the platform had consented to share with them. The Help Desk team walked her through the process of configuring and downloading a marketing report from within the Foundation’s account which she then used to expand the reach of her newsletter. “Having easy access to real people has been so valuable. Our workload is busier than ever right now and the super-quick turnaround, personal response and considered advice from Localgiving’s Help Desk team has made a real difference.” Their message was simple – for as long as they could, the Square Food team would be working flat-out to help their community access the food they needed – and they made it as easy as possible for potential donors to support them in their work by directing them to their Localgiving page. They received widespread local news coverage after sending out press releases to journalists and were featured in the Bristol Evening Post, Bristol 24/7, and on BBC News. Donors on Localgiving are directly encouraged to share the details of the causes they support with their own networks via a social media ‘Share’ button built into the donation process, further increasing the online reach of any organisation on the platform. Results Since launching their appeal on March 20th, Square Food Foundation has raised over £21,770 on Localgiving from over 590 donors, supplemented by £3475 worth of Gift Aid. That figure represents a 15x increase on total donations received in 2019, when their organisation raised just over £1600 on Localgiving. Square Food raises in the region of £4000 offline from their paid masterclasses and workshops on a yearly basis – a revenue stream which has been put on hold for the duration of the COVID-19 crisis. Thanks to their appeal's success, they have attracted new supporters by direct debit who will be contributing over £150 each month on an ongoing basis. Further to that, they received support from their local network – The Better Food Company raised close to £1200 on the Foundation’s behalf and provided an additional £1000 of match funding. “Localgiving has made it as easy as possible for people to support our #SquareMeals mission - and this is borne out by the incredible number of donations we’ve received from our supporters.”   All of this culminated in the high point of their campaign – a single supporter approached Square Food Foundation after having heard about their work from a friend who had donated to their online appeal. They offered to match the money raised during their campaign up to a maximum of £10,000 to help expand the Foundation’s services more widely across Bristol. “The offer of match-funding came out of nowhere and really blew us away. It’s the first time we’ve received this level of support and it felt like an important milestone for Square Food Foundation.”  What’s next for Square Food Foundation? Whilst the future of many organisations is uncertain, they intend to maintain their current rate of meal production to help families in need through to September, by which time resumption of free school meals is expected. They want to build new partnerships with schools in Bristol, modelled on their ongoing relationship with Oasis Academy Connaught – these organisations form a vital link with the communities the Foundation aims to help. What advice would the team at Square Food Foundation offer to other organisations hoping to raise funds online? “We kept our message simple, made our work easy to understand, and kept our audience updated with regular, engaging communications. We knew they were rooting for us and we wanted to say thank you by providing them with pictures, videos and daily updates so they could see for themselves the impact of their support.”  There you have it – a recipe for success.   You can find out more about Square Food's work here or donate to the #SquareMeals Appeal on Localgiving.   
    May 20, 2020 3525
  • 26 Mar 2020
    During these testing times, we have seen a significant increase in the number of crowdfunding appeals being set up by charities using our platform. We’ve also seen an incredible response from the general public - with an increase of over 300% in the donations we are processing through the platform. Many charities and community groups are currently facing an increase in demand for their services or a threat to their long-term existence. Setting up a crowdfunding appeal can be a great way to gain financial support and awareness for your great work.  If you set up a crowdfunding appeal please let us know and we’ll add your appeal to our campaign page, which you can see here: https://localgiving.org/campaign/covid-19/ If you aren’t already a Localgiving member, you can sign up here and we will set up a personal fundraising advice call once you are live. We’ve outlined our top 10 tips for running a crowdfunding appeal in response to the challenges faced by coronavirus below. Setting up the campaign 1. Make it specific Be detailed about the costs you need to cover in order to avoid cutting back the services you provide. These should be reflected in your words, the targets and the timescale that you set for your appeal. Provide examples of exactly what a donation could achieve. We are seeing a significant number of high value donations. Use £50, £100 and £250 as examples. Think about a stretched target. If you are successful in reaching your fundraising target, have a larger target in mind so that you can build on your fundraising momentum. 2. Make it emotive  Use a photo or video that shows the work that you do or the people that you support. Use terminology that makes the donor sound like the hero. Make your wording reflect this e.g. 'because of you, the most vulnerable people can stay safely in their homes during this concerning time'. Outline how time-sensitive your need is during this crisis. Pre-launch  3. Identify how you will reach out to your networks  Bring your team together via phone or video conference software, like Zoom, and identify all of the networks who you can promote your appeal to. Your networks may include: current donors, family/friends of service users, supporters of partner organisations, local media, social media supporters, community leaders, peer organisations, and other groups in your local community. Decide what your call to action is for each network (e.g. donate to us, share our appeal with your friends and family etc.) and the channel (e.g. email, phone, social media etc.) via which you will reach out to them. 4. Secure initial donations before your public launch Most people will be more likely to give to an appeal that has already received some support. We find that the tipping point for success is 20% of the way to the overall target.  When you launch your appeal, reach out to your inner circle of supporters and ask them to help you create a solid base of donations which will give you a leg-up on your overall target. Launch 5. Get everyone to launch the campaign together Bring together everyone closely involved in your organisation (e.g. staff, volunteers, trustees, service users etc.) and ask them to all promote the campaign via their social media channels at the same time. 6. Update your website and social media  Don’t forget to add the web address for your appeal to your website, social media and email signature. Why not reach out to any popular websites that your local community uses and ask if they can add it to their website? Building Momentum 7. Review your progress regularly It is important to review your progress. Create a fundraising team and catch up every day. Review what has worked and what hasn’t, identifying what to continue and what to improve. Most importantly - celebrate your successes with your wider team!  Use these reviews to keep people updated on the progress of your appeal as you reach significant milestones (e.g. 50% of the target or 7 days left to donate). 8. Thank donors quickly  Once someone donates they become a key stakeholder in your campaign. Ensure their buy-in by thanking them quickly and guide them to the next level of involvement.  Invite them to follow you on social media for further updates on your appeal progress. Ask them to share your appeal link on their own social media channels. Donor care 9. Turn donors into ambassadors Consider which of your supporters can help you drive momentum by counting down to the deadline and shouting when you get close to the target. Keep them up to date on anything going on behind the scenes and try to make them feel like part of the team - they’ll want to pitch in and champion your cause. 10. Turn donors into long-term supporters  After building up a relationship with these donors through your appeal updates, consider asking them to make a monthly donation to your organisation. The disruptive impact of COVID-19 is likely to affect the economy, your community and the services that you provide for longer than the current period of social distancing in place.  Regular donations will help to secure your organisation’s future and help broaden awareness of your work. We hope that these tips can help you set up and deliver an excellent crowdfunding campaign. Remember, if you set up a crowdfunding appeal please let us know and we’ll add your appeal to our campaign page, which you can see here: https://localgiving.org/campaign/covid-19/ If you aren’t already a Localgiving member, you can sign up here and we will set up a personal fundraising advice call once you are live. Good luck with your fundraising!
    5867 Posted by Chris Breeze
  • During these testing times, we have seen a significant increase in the number of crowdfunding appeals being set up by charities using our platform. We’ve also seen an incredible response from the general public - with an increase of over 300% in the donations we are processing through the platform. Many charities and community groups are currently facing an increase in demand for their services or a threat to their long-term existence. Setting up a crowdfunding appeal can be a great way to gain financial support and awareness for your great work.  If you set up a crowdfunding appeal please let us know and we’ll add your appeal to our campaign page, which you can see here: https://localgiving.org/campaign/covid-19/ If you aren’t already a Localgiving member, you can sign up here and we will set up a personal fundraising advice call once you are live. We’ve outlined our top 10 tips for running a crowdfunding appeal in response to the challenges faced by coronavirus below. Setting up the campaign 1. Make it specific Be detailed about the costs you need to cover in order to avoid cutting back the services you provide. These should be reflected in your words, the targets and the timescale that you set for your appeal. Provide examples of exactly what a donation could achieve. We are seeing a significant number of high value donations. Use £50, £100 and £250 as examples. Think about a stretched target. If you are successful in reaching your fundraising target, have a larger target in mind so that you can build on your fundraising momentum. 2. Make it emotive  Use a photo or video that shows the work that you do or the people that you support. Use terminology that makes the donor sound like the hero. Make your wording reflect this e.g. 'because of you, the most vulnerable people can stay safely in their homes during this concerning time'. Outline how time-sensitive your need is during this crisis. Pre-launch  3. Identify how you will reach out to your networks  Bring your team together via phone or video conference software, like Zoom, and identify all of the networks who you can promote your appeal to. Your networks may include: current donors, family/friends of service users, supporters of partner organisations, local media, social media supporters, community leaders, peer organisations, and other groups in your local community. Decide what your call to action is for each network (e.g. donate to us, share our appeal with your friends and family etc.) and the channel (e.g. email, phone, social media etc.) via which you will reach out to them. 4. Secure initial donations before your public launch Most people will be more likely to give to an appeal that has already received some support. We find that the tipping point for success is 20% of the way to the overall target.  When you launch your appeal, reach out to your inner circle of supporters and ask them to help you create a solid base of donations which will give you a leg-up on your overall target. Launch 5. Get everyone to launch the campaign together Bring together everyone closely involved in your organisation (e.g. staff, volunteers, trustees, service users etc.) and ask them to all promote the campaign via their social media channels at the same time. 6. Update your website and social media  Don’t forget to add the web address for your appeal to your website, social media and email signature. Why not reach out to any popular websites that your local community uses and ask if they can add it to their website? Building Momentum 7. Review your progress regularly It is important to review your progress. Create a fundraising team and catch up every day. Review what has worked and what hasn’t, identifying what to continue and what to improve. Most importantly - celebrate your successes with your wider team!  Use these reviews to keep people updated on the progress of your appeal as you reach significant milestones (e.g. 50% of the target or 7 days left to donate). 8. Thank donors quickly  Once someone donates they become a key stakeholder in your campaign. Ensure their buy-in by thanking them quickly and guide them to the next level of involvement.  Invite them to follow you on social media for further updates on your appeal progress. Ask them to share your appeal link on their own social media channels. Donor care 9. Turn donors into ambassadors Consider which of your supporters can help you drive momentum by counting down to the deadline and shouting when you get close to the target. Keep them up to date on anything going on behind the scenes and try to make them feel like part of the team - they’ll want to pitch in and champion your cause. 10. Turn donors into long-term supporters  After building up a relationship with these donors through your appeal updates, consider asking them to make a monthly donation to your organisation. The disruptive impact of COVID-19 is likely to affect the economy, your community and the services that you provide for longer than the current period of social distancing in place.  Regular donations will help to secure your organisation’s future and help broaden awareness of your work. We hope that these tips can help you set up and deliver an excellent crowdfunding campaign. Remember, if you set up a crowdfunding appeal please let us know and we’ll add your appeal to our campaign page, which you can see here: https://localgiving.org/campaign/covid-19/ If you aren’t already a Localgiving member, you can sign up here and we will set up a personal fundraising advice call once you are live. Good luck with your fundraising!
    Mar 26, 2020 5867
  • 26 Mar 2020
    Due to the outbreak of COVID-19, we understand that traditional fundraising techniques might be more difficult to carry out. We encourage our members to be safe and stay well by adhering to all of the safety precautions and advice set out by the government. You should keep up to date with official government advice here. Spring is a time that the majority of charities depend on for donations through fundraising pages, due to the large number of running events. In response to the coronavirus they need your support now more than ever. As we are currently operating in a challenging and uncertain environment, and given that many fundraising events have been cancelled or postponed to ensure the safety of the fundraisers, we have outlined some fun and coronavirus-appropriate fundraising ideas below! 1. Donate your commuteFor those of us who are lucky enough to be able to work from home, we sure are saving a lot of money from our commute! Whether it be your train, tube, bus or petrol fees, this could make a huge difference to communities in difficult circumstances. Why not donate your weekly travel costs and ask your friends and family to do the same to a great cause that needs support? 2. Personal exercise challengesYou can still get outdoors to challenge yourself and your fitness levels while practicing social distancing! Set yourself a walking, running or biking target - from a 5k to a full marathon. You could even get creative with this and do a squat challenge in your garden (just make sure that you’re keeping your distance!) 3. ReadathonNow that you finally have enough spare time to read those books that have been piling up on your bedside table, why not set yourself an ambitious goal of reading 10 books in 60 days? Or whatever duration of time you think is feasible but still challenging (and no cheating, we expect reviews afterwards of which books you enjoyed the most and how you’re a changed person with new broadened horizons!) 4. Virtual pub quiz or games nightHost a virtual pub quiz or even a video games tournament with a suggested donation to participate! There are plenty of video chat websites and apps such as Skype, Zoom, Google Hangouts or Facetime. Or you could even use specific apps that allow you to video chat and play games simultaneously such as House Party to help unleash your competitive side! 5. Give up something for 30 days!We all have our vices - whether it be chocolate, fizzy drinks, coffee, alcohol, your phone or using social media. Ask for family and friends to donate to your cause by supporting you in your new healthier lifestyle! Fundraising for a good cause and cultivating better habits - what more could you ask for? (Hint: it’s harder than you think to avoid those biscuits when you’re spending so much time at home!) 6. Donate your coffeeIf like the rest of us you’re guilty of spending too much money on your morning coffee from Pret or Starbucks, you’ll be much better off financially during lockdown! Why not work out the amount that you would spend on your daily or weekly coffee and donate this to help a struggling organisation? 7. MoviethonThis one is perfect for raising funds whilst being stuck inside! With unlimited access to a plethora of films and shows on Netflix and Amazon Prime, you can set yourself a 24 hour (or even 48 hour if you’re feeling confident) challenge to get through as many movies as you can! Power through the sleep deprivation for those donations. 8. Online talent competition With a suggested entry fee to the competition and encouraging all different sorts of talent (we’re talking singing, dancing, acting, painting, stand-up comedy, hula-hooping for hours, making a routine with your dog), you’re all set for an evening of hilarity! Spread the word (virtually) and afterwards you can get everyone to send in their scores on a Google Doc! 9. Dye your hair/beard a crazy colourSet yourself a fundraising target and let your supporters know that once this target has been reached, you’ll dye your hair or beard a crazy colour! One of our favourite fundraisers previously dyed his beard multicoloured and everyone who donated got to choose a different colour that went into the mix! Find some inspo here (Don’t worry - if you’re not ready for such an extreme makeover, you could just grow it out until the end of social isolation!) 10. Send personalised thank you messagesWant a unique way to encourage donations? Ensure that every donor is thanked in a distinctive and personalised way by getting your loved ones involved in the thank you messages. Send your donors a special song written by your nephews, a piece of artwork created by your daughter or even a dance performance performed by your niece - the ways of saying thank you are endless! You can search for a charity supporting your local community through our search engine here. Already know the charity that you’d like to fundraise for? Then sign up as a fundraiser here. Happy fundraising!
    7142 Posted by Katie Wootton
  • Due to the outbreak of COVID-19, we understand that traditional fundraising techniques might be more difficult to carry out. We encourage our members to be safe and stay well by adhering to all of the safety precautions and advice set out by the government. You should keep up to date with official government advice here. Spring is a time that the majority of charities depend on for donations through fundraising pages, due to the large number of running events. In response to the coronavirus they need your support now more than ever. As we are currently operating in a challenging and uncertain environment, and given that many fundraising events have been cancelled or postponed to ensure the safety of the fundraisers, we have outlined some fun and coronavirus-appropriate fundraising ideas below! 1. Donate your commuteFor those of us who are lucky enough to be able to work from home, we sure are saving a lot of money from our commute! Whether it be your train, tube, bus or petrol fees, this could make a huge difference to communities in difficult circumstances. Why not donate your weekly travel costs and ask your friends and family to do the same to a great cause that needs support? 2. Personal exercise challengesYou can still get outdoors to challenge yourself and your fitness levels while practicing social distancing! Set yourself a walking, running or biking target - from a 5k to a full marathon. You could even get creative with this and do a squat challenge in your garden (just make sure that you’re keeping your distance!) 3. ReadathonNow that you finally have enough spare time to read those books that have been piling up on your bedside table, why not set yourself an ambitious goal of reading 10 books in 60 days? Or whatever duration of time you think is feasible but still challenging (and no cheating, we expect reviews afterwards of which books you enjoyed the most and how you’re a changed person with new broadened horizons!) 4. Virtual pub quiz or games nightHost a virtual pub quiz or even a video games tournament with a suggested donation to participate! There are plenty of video chat websites and apps such as Skype, Zoom, Google Hangouts or Facetime. Or you could even use specific apps that allow you to video chat and play games simultaneously such as House Party to help unleash your competitive side! 5. Give up something for 30 days!We all have our vices - whether it be chocolate, fizzy drinks, coffee, alcohol, your phone or using social media. Ask for family and friends to donate to your cause by supporting you in your new healthier lifestyle! Fundraising for a good cause and cultivating better habits - what more could you ask for? (Hint: it’s harder than you think to avoid those biscuits when you’re spending so much time at home!) 6. Donate your coffeeIf like the rest of us you’re guilty of spending too much money on your morning coffee from Pret or Starbucks, you’ll be much better off financially during lockdown! Why not work out the amount that you would spend on your daily or weekly coffee and donate this to help a struggling organisation? 7. MoviethonThis one is perfect for raising funds whilst being stuck inside! With unlimited access to a plethora of films and shows on Netflix and Amazon Prime, you can set yourself a 24 hour (or even 48 hour if you’re feeling confident) challenge to get through as many movies as you can! Power through the sleep deprivation for those donations. 8. Online talent competition With a suggested entry fee to the competition and encouraging all different sorts of talent (we’re talking singing, dancing, acting, painting, stand-up comedy, hula-hooping for hours, making a routine with your dog), you’re all set for an evening of hilarity! Spread the word (virtually) and afterwards you can get everyone to send in their scores on a Google Doc! 9. Dye your hair/beard a crazy colourSet yourself a fundraising target and let your supporters know that once this target has been reached, you’ll dye your hair or beard a crazy colour! One of our favourite fundraisers previously dyed his beard multicoloured and everyone who donated got to choose a different colour that went into the mix! Find some inspo here (Don’t worry - if you’re not ready for such an extreme makeover, you could just grow it out until the end of social isolation!) 10. Send personalised thank you messagesWant a unique way to encourage donations? Ensure that every donor is thanked in a distinctive and personalised way by getting your loved ones involved in the thank you messages. Send your donors a special song written by your nephews, a piece of artwork created by your daughter or even a dance performance performed by your niece - the ways of saying thank you are endless! You can search for a charity supporting your local community through our search engine here. Already know the charity that you’d like to fundraise for? Then sign up as a fundraiser here. Happy fundraising!
    Mar 26, 2020 7142
  • 16 Oct 2019
    Most people who work in the charity sector do so because, in some way or another, they want to make the world a little better. For those of us involved in marketing, our role is to engage people with our cause and persuade them to take action (donating, volunteering, building barricades etc). So far,  so simple. The problem is that the actions we take in achieving our goals are not neutral – no action ever is. Indeed, in some cases our actions have negative repercussions that can outweigh the good they are intended to achieve. To state ‘actions have consequences’ is not exactly ground breaking.  However, in recent years numerous charity scandals have come about specifically because charity marketers and fundraisers have become so blindly goal-orientated that they have entirely neglected to take into account the consequences of their actions. While very few charities are involved in actively (or knowingly) unethical behaviours, all of us must think more carefully about the potential wider impact of our marketing strategy and output.   If we are serious when we use the phrase “what I love about what I do is the knowledge that I am making a positive difference”, then we need to be consistently weighing up whether our intended ends justify our means. Of course, this is not a simple question and will rarely have simple answers. For example, if a charity successfully persuades donors to give £2 per month by using imagery that perpetuates “white saviour” myths, is this justified? My immediate response would be that the wider negative impact of this type of campaign does not justify the use of this imagery.  However, the uncomfortable truth is that these images are emotionally potent and therefore highly effective when it comes to persuading people to donate.   Sadly, this means that marketers who choose not to use such imagery are often playing catch-up.  As are those who take the time to ensure their images have alt-text so they are accessible to visually impaired people. As are those who opt against using aggressive sales techniques. Striking a balance between hitting targets and maintaining an ethical marketing strategy comes with serious challenges.  The reality is that, taking a more ethical route will often be more time-consuming, more resource sapping and will require far more creativity. Given these challenges, it would be significantly easier for marketing professionals to take these risks if they have the support and understanding of their senior management and board. Indeed, in an ideal world, this approach should be adopted into the wider culture and values of the organisation as a whole. In some cases  achieving this support will be easier than others.  However, given the arguments, I believe that the majority of board members and senior managers will be receptive because ultimately they are (one hopes) in involved in the voluntary sector for exactly the same reason as you and I. For more on ethical marketing strategy: People Before Stories: Working With Beneficiaries' Narratives 3 tips for building an ethical fundraising strategy
    5160 Posted by Lewis Garland
  • Most people who work in the charity sector do so because, in some way or another, they want to make the world a little better. For those of us involved in marketing, our role is to engage people with our cause and persuade them to take action (donating, volunteering, building barricades etc). So far,  so simple. The problem is that the actions we take in achieving our goals are not neutral – no action ever is. Indeed, in some cases our actions have negative repercussions that can outweigh the good they are intended to achieve. To state ‘actions have consequences’ is not exactly ground breaking.  However, in recent years numerous charity scandals have come about specifically because charity marketers and fundraisers have become so blindly goal-orientated that they have entirely neglected to take into account the consequences of their actions. While very few charities are involved in actively (or knowingly) unethical behaviours, all of us must think more carefully about the potential wider impact of our marketing strategy and output.   If we are serious when we use the phrase “what I love about what I do is the knowledge that I am making a positive difference”, then we need to be consistently weighing up whether our intended ends justify our means. Of course, this is not a simple question and will rarely have simple answers. For example, if a charity successfully persuades donors to give £2 per month by using imagery that perpetuates “white saviour” myths, is this justified? My immediate response would be that the wider negative impact of this type of campaign does not justify the use of this imagery.  However, the uncomfortable truth is that these images are emotionally potent and therefore highly effective when it comes to persuading people to donate.   Sadly, this means that marketers who choose not to use such imagery are often playing catch-up.  As are those who take the time to ensure their images have alt-text so they are accessible to visually impaired people. As are those who opt against using aggressive sales techniques. Striking a balance between hitting targets and maintaining an ethical marketing strategy comes with serious challenges.  The reality is that, taking a more ethical route will often be more time-consuming, more resource sapping and will require far more creativity. Given these challenges, it would be significantly easier for marketing professionals to take these risks if they have the support and understanding of their senior management and board. Indeed, in an ideal world, this approach should be adopted into the wider culture and values of the organisation as a whole. In some cases  achieving this support will be easier than others.  However, given the arguments, I believe that the majority of board members and senior managers will be receptive because ultimately they are (one hopes) in involved in the voluntary sector for exactly the same reason as you and I. For more on ethical marketing strategy: People Before Stories: Working With Beneficiaries' Narratives 3 tips for building an ethical fundraising strategy
    Oct 16, 2019 5160
  • 08 Oct 2019
    Let me set the scene: We are in Israel, around 3,000 years ago, and a fight is about to go down between the Philistine’s mightiest warrior, Goliath and an unknown shepherd named David. Standing at 9 feet and 6 inches tall, covered head to toe in heavy bronze plates and carrying a sword the size of his opponent, Goliath is a thing of nightmares. In comparison, David is small and slight, wears no armour and is carrying just a few pebbles and a slingshot. The Israelite bookies aren’t anticipating an upset here, and the crowd are clamouring in the heat.  For the 80% of UK charities who generate under £100,000 in revenue each year, the charity landscape is beginning to feel as dangerous as that dusty battlefield. Weakened by decreasing funds, increased demand for services, volatile public trust and growing competition, these organisations have their work cut out. More than one in four Chief Executives of smaller charities feel strongly that they are ‘struggling to survive’. Despite making up 80% of the charity sector, these organisations bring in just 3% of total income. Let’s call these guys David’s. You can see where I’m going with this… On to the competition. Who are our metaphorical David’s up against? Well, they aren’t mighty in numbers - the charity sector’s Goliath is made up of a mere 1% of a total 168,000 registered UK charities. However, just like the Philistine warrior himself, they are enormous. That 1% generates a whopping 72% of total income to the sector. As you likely know, the fight does provide the Israeli crowds with an upset. David; the crowd behind him, more agile, and armed with different tactics, fells his opponent. So how can smaller charities learn from David’s success and continue to survive in an arena of Goliaths? Get your ‘crowd’ involved More than half of small charities income comes from individual donations. This means our David’s have a strong connection with their donor-base and can communicate with a personal touch. Goliath’s can find this trust very difficult to replicate. In one poll nearly half of the respondents said they trusted small community-based charities, whereas just 29% said they trusted national charities. This directly correlates with giving. The same proportion of people who trusted smaller charities were likely to donate to them, however only 17% said they were likely to donate to national organisations. Use your agility to your advantage David is small and nimble. Goliath, weighed down by his heavy armour and his size, moves as if coated in molasses. How can this same agility serve a charity’s mission? Well, put simply, a smaller charity equals a smaller team, and therefore a flatter hierarchy. Use this to your advantage, take bold, creative decisions to your board of trustees. In a world in which technology is fuelling growth, promise and incredible opportunity, the pace of organisational change is vital. Introduce new tactics Ultimately, David won the battle because he stunned Goliath with a new method of combat: his slingshot. The new method of combat for smaller charities? Technology. Technology has levelled the playing field across all sectors, and the charity world is no different. In fact, Goliath’s are more likely to cite ‘new technology’ as one of their top challenges in comparison to David’s. New tools on social media such as the donate sticker on Instagram is making it easier than ever before for charities to reach individual supporters. Plus, free services are available from other industry Goliaths, such as Google For Non-Profits. Contactless charity donation boxes allow charities to maximise their fundraising on the ground by tapping into a whole new donor base who just don’t carry cash anymore. Through this methodology, my very own ‘David’ TAP London, has raised over £100,000 from over 35,000 Londoners. So, to all the David’s out there. Don’t lose faith. Be personal, agile and most importantly – embrace new technologies. Polly Gilbert is the Marketing Director at GoodBox, a tech-for-good company which helps charities of all sizes better connect donors with charitable causes. She is also the co-founder of TAP London, a ‘David’ raising vital funds for London’s homeless.
    4280 Posted by Polly Gilbert
  • Let me set the scene: We are in Israel, around 3,000 years ago, and a fight is about to go down between the Philistine’s mightiest warrior, Goliath and an unknown shepherd named David. Standing at 9 feet and 6 inches tall, covered head to toe in heavy bronze plates and carrying a sword the size of his opponent, Goliath is a thing of nightmares. In comparison, David is small and slight, wears no armour and is carrying just a few pebbles and a slingshot. The Israelite bookies aren’t anticipating an upset here, and the crowd are clamouring in the heat.  For the 80% of UK charities who generate under £100,000 in revenue each year, the charity landscape is beginning to feel as dangerous as that dusty battlefield. Weakened by decreasing funds, increased demand for services, volatile public trust and growing competition, these organisations have their work cut out. More than one in four Chief Executives of smaller charities feel strongly that they are ‘struggling to survive’. Despite making up 80% of the charity sector, these organisations bring in just 3% of total income. Let’s call these guys David’s. You can see where I’m going with this… On to the competition. Who are our metaphorical David’s up against? Well, they aren’t mighty in numbers - the charity sector’s Goliath is made up of a mere 1% of a total 168,000 registered UK charities. However, just like the Philistine warrior himself, they are enormous. That 1% generates a whopping 72% of total income to the sector. As you likely know, the fight does provide the Israeli crowds with an upset. David; the crowd behind him, more agile, and armed with different tactics, fells his opponent. So how can smaller charities learn from David’s success and continue to survive in an arena of Goliaths? Get your ‘crowd’ involved More than half of small charities income comes from individual donations. This means our David’s have a strong connection with their donor-base and can communicate with a personal touch. Goliath’s can find this trust very difficult to replicate. In one poll nearly half of the respondents said they trusted small community-based charities, whereas just 29% said they trusted national charities. This directly correlates with giving. The same proportion of people who trusted smaller charities were likely to donate to them, however only 17% said they were likely to donate to national organisations. Use your agility to your advantage David is small and nimble. Goliath, weighed down by his heavy armour and his size, moves as if coated in molasses. How can this same agility serve a charity’s mission? Well, put simply, a smaller charity equals a smaller team, and therefore a flatter hierarchy. Use this to your advantage, take bold, creative decisions to your board of trustees. In a world in which technology is fuelling growth, promise and incredible opportunity, the pace of organisational change is vital. Introduce new tactics Ultimately, David won the battle because he stunned Goliath with a new method of combat: his slingshot. The new method of combat for smaller charities? Technology. Technology has levelled the playing field across all sectors, and the charity world is no different. In fact, Goliath’s are more likely to cite ‘new technology’ as one of their top challenges in comparison to David’s. New tools on social media such as the donate sticker on Instagram is making it easier than ever before for charities to reach individual supporters. Plus, free services are available from other industry Goliaths, such as Google For Non-Profits. Contactless charity donation boxes allow charities to maximise their fundraising on the ground by tapping into a whole new donor base who just don’t carry cash anymore. Through this methodology, my very own ‘David’ TAP London, has raised over £100,000 from over 35,000 Londoners. So, to all the David’s out there. Don’t lose faith. Be personal, agile and most importantly – embrace new technologies. Polly Gilbert is the Marketing Director at GoodBox, a tech-for-good company which helps charities of all sizes better connect donors with charitable causes. She is also the co-founder of TAP London, a ‘David’ raising vital funds for London’s homeless.
    Oct 08, 2019 4280
  • 24 Sep 2019
    The Friends of Tower Hamlets Cemetery Park are doing an appeal with a target of £5000 to get the Burdick family monument repaired. The FoTHCP is the charity looking after the beautiful, atmospheric cemetery park, which opened in 1841 and closed for burials in 1966. It has been a public park ever since, a quiet escape for humans and nature, conservation volunteering, dog walking, and a children's nature club.   In February 2019 a storm blew over one of the first trees planted about 175 years ago, the only silver lime we had.. It hit the Burdick family monument, an Egyptian-style obelisk. The monument broke into seven big, heavy pieces, and it’s going to cost £5,000 to put it together again permanently and safely.   Our biggest challenge is to repair the monument as soon as possible, because if it gets below freezing this winter, frost can break cracks in the stone and make the repair even more expensive.       The monument is the family vault of James & Amy Burdick. They aren't buried here, but two of their sons are. James and Amy had 6 children. James Henry, William, Charles all died before their parents, but Alfred, Lydie and Ethel survived.   The Burdicks were part of the Burdick & Cook merchant shipping company in Poplar. Sadly the company was as lucky with their ships as James and Amy were with their sons. There was a ship with Lydie's name, but it was torpedoed in 1918 by a German submarine. The SS Buresk and SS Burbridge were also sank during WWI.   James Henry drowned aged 21 and was buried in Sebastopol in the Crimean peninsula on the Black Sea, likely on company business. William died when he was 20 years old, and Charles was only 7. We're not sure yet what happened to Alfred and Ethel, but Lydie married a baronet and became Lady Greenaway.   If you'd like to see the Burdick monument for yourself, the cemetery park is open every day.
    6546 Posted by Suzanna Maas
  • The Friends of Tower Hamlets Cemetery Park are doing an appeal with a target of £5000 to get the Burdick family monument repaired. The FoTHCP is the charity looking after the beautiful, atmospheric cemetery park, which opened in 1841 and closed for burials in 1966. It has been a public park ever since, a quiet escape for humans and nature, conservation volunteering, dog walking, and a children's nature club.   In February 2019 a storm blew over one of the first trees planted about 175 years ago, the only silver lime we had.. It hit the Burdick family monument, an Egyptian-style obelisk. The monument broke into seven big, heavy pieces, and it’s going to cost £5,000 to put it together again permanently and safely.   Our biggest challenge is to repair the monument as soon as possible, because if it gets below freezing this winter, frost can break cracks in the stone and make the repair even more expensive.       The monument is the family vault of James & Amy Burdick. They aren't buried here, but two of their sons are. James and Amy had 6 children. James Henry, William, Charles all died before their parents, but Alfred, Lydie and Ethel survived.   The Burdicks were part of the Burdick & Cook merchant shipping company in Poplar. Sadly the company was as lucky with their ships as James and Amy were with their sons. There was a ship with Lydie's name, but it was torpedoed in 1918 by a German submarine. The SS Buresk and SS Burbridge were also sank during WWI.   James Henry drowned aged 21 and was buried in Sebastopol in the Crimean peninsula on the Black Sea, likely on company business. William died when he was 20 years old, and Charles was only 7. We're not sure yet what happened to Alfred and Ethel, but Lydie married a baronet and became Lady Greenaway.   If you'd like to see the Burdick monument for yourself, the cemetery park is open every day.
    Sep 24, 2019 6546
  • 09 Sep 2019
    The nights are drawing in, the leaves are colouring, the air is beginning to cool, children are yelling on their way to school, advisers are skulking in Westminster Hall, and it turns out your team’s big summer signing isn’t the new Messi after all. Autumn is officially here! Each season comes with its own set of fundraising opportunities. In this blog we highlight a few events for you to hang your fundraising hat on this Autumn. 22nd September (week of) - Harvest Festival This ancient festival (coinciding with the Harvest moon, the full moon closest to the autumn equinox) celebrates the end of the harvest season. Traditionally linked with charity, particularly sharing food, this is a great opportunity for poverty focussed charities and community groups to highlight their vital work. 27th October - Diwali Diwali, the 5 day Hindu festival of lights celebrates both Lakshmi, the goddess of wealth and the triumph of good over evil (I’m sure we can find a fundraising angle there). This festival, celebrated by 1 billion people worldwide including Jains, Sikhs and Newar Buddhists as well as Hindus, gives ample opportunity for some South Asian themed fundraising fun – from food and fireworks nights to lantern making workshop. 31st October - Halloween  When the spirits rise with ghastly cries, and the maggots crawl from hollow eyes, and the hairy-legged spiders creep and the reaper comes to help you sleep… Halloween provides an excellent opportunity to hit those fundraising ghouls! This year the 31st is also (the latest) Brexit day - draw connections as you wish. Read our Halloween blog for some ideas to help you make a little money from the night of the macabre 2nd November - Day of the Dead Día de Muertos, a Mexican tradition celebrating departed ancestors, gets bigger and bigger each year here in the UK. Why not throw a Day of the Dead fundraising party – complete with  face-paints, sugar-skulls, decoration, libations, salsa rhythms and tasty tostadas? 5th November – Bonfire Night Remember, remember the 5th of November ...  Who doesn’t love wrapping up warm, writing your name (as if you write anything else) in the cool air with a sparkler, and watching the night sky come alive with colour? A stall selling hot food and drinks and marshmallow sticks would go down a treat! I hope these ideas give you some food for thought. Let us know about your group's autumn fundraising plans and, as ever, we’ll be happy to share your fundraising events and feats in our blog, newsletter and across our social media channels. 
    6666 Posted by Lewis Garland
  • The nights are drawing in, the leaves are colouring, the air is beginning to cool, children are yelling on their way to school, advisers are skulking in Westminster Hall, and it turns out your team’s big summer signing isn’t the new Messi after all. Autumn is officially here! Each season comes with its own set of fundraising opportunities. In this blog we highlight a few events for you to hang your fundraising hat on this Autumn. 22nd September (week of) - Harvest Festival This ancient festival (coinciding with the Harvest moon, the full moon closest to the autumn equinox) celebrates the end of the harvest season. Traditionally linked with charity, particularly sharing food, this is a great opportunity for poverty focussed charities and community groups to highlight their vital work. 27th October - Diwali Diwali, the 5 day Hindu festival of lights celebrates both Lakshmi, the goddess of wealth and the triumph of good over evil (I’m sure we can find a fundraising angle there). This festival, celebrated by 1 billion people worldwide including Jains, Sikhs and Newar Buddhists as well as Hindus, gives ample opportunity for some South Asian themed fundraising fun – from food and fireworks nights to lantern making workshop. 31st October - Halloween  When the spirits rise with ghastly cries, and the maggots crawl from hollow eyes, and the hairy-legged spiders creep and the reaper comes to help you sleep… Halloween provides an excellent opportunity to hit those fundraising ghouls! This year the 31st is also (the latest) Brexit day - draw connections as you wish. Read our Halloween blog for some ideas to help you make a little money from the night of the macabre 2nd November - Day of the Dead Día de Muertos, a Mexican tradition celebrating departed ancestors, gets bigger and bigger each year here in the UK. Why not throw a Day of the Dead fundraising party – complete with  face-paints, sugar-skulls, decoration, libations, salsa rhythms and tasty tostadas? 5th November – Bonfire Night Remember, remember the 5th of November ...  Who doesn’t love wrapping up warm, writing your name (as if you write anything else) in the cool air with a sparkler, and watching the night sky come alive with colour? A stall selling hot food and drinks and marshmallow sticks would go down a treat! I hope these ideas give you some food for thought. Let us know about your group's autumn fundraising plans and, as ever, we’ll be happy to share your fundraising events and feats in our blog, newsletter and across our social media channels. 
    Sep 09, 2019 6666
  • 23 Aug 2019
    It can often be difficult to keep up with the latest trends in the digital world. Everything from up and coming artificial intelligence, chat bots and the likes of Alexa voice control, to new releases and platforms updates, can result (and often, not result) in exciting and purposeful change for charities. In this blog, Social Misfits Media’s Angharad Francis takes a look at what we can expect to see in the second half of 2019! E-commerce within apps What could be easier than being able to buy all your favourite products whilst scrolling through social media? According to DigiDay, like social media giants Facebook and Instagram, Snapchat have now released a new feature allowing users to access shops within the app itself. This is powered by Shopify, and aims to increase engagement rates and dwell time within the Snapchat app. For now, this new option to have an e-commerce store within Snapchat is limited to select accounts. However, other social media platforms such as Pinterest and Instagram already allow brands to showcase shoppable products. Creating social media campaigns focusing on e-commerce opportunities could work particularly well around the Christmas period, whereby charities could showcase their goods, such as Christmas cards or clothing, to raise funds for a given campaign. Meaningful Engagement The more engaging a social media platform is, the more time a user will spend on it. One platform doing this well is Instagram, with their Stories feature. From GIFs, to countdowns, to quizzes and polls, there are endless options for users to experiment with, and create engaging stories to share with friends and family. Most recently, Instagram have released their new “Chat” sticker within Stories. This simple feature allows users to ask their followers to join a new chat group. Charities could use this to discuss a new report, a specific goal, or to have a Q&A with their CEO, allowing their audience to gain additional insight into the organisation and connect better online. If creative skills and resources are not a constraint, another new feature charities could use on Instagram is the new AR feature. This feature, created to increase dwell time within the platform, allows users to design their own effects within stories. Charities could use this as a way to create a more personalised experience for their audience, for example if a charity is selling a new product to raise funds, they could use the AR filter as a way for users to try the product on in their story before purchasing. Facebook Groups Although the Facebook algorithm continues to push user-generated content with its meaningful conversations update, platform users are increasingly turning to groups to communicate. Charities can create a group for their organisation, in order to generate organic engagement and awareness, and allow conversation with their audience beyond a Facebook page. Alternatively, if there is a lack of capacity and time to invest in social media, charities can engage in existing groups as a brand. The benefit of this is that instead of setting up a new group, charities are able to communicate with their audience using an already engaged group. This could help them to raise awareness of a fundraising event, locate volunteers or ask supporters to sign a petition. Podcasts The popularity of Podcasts continues to increase, not only with countless new comedy and lifestyle podcasts, but also within the charity sector. In the UK, the number of weekly podcast listeners has almost doubled in five years, from 3.2m (7% of adults aged 15+) in 2013 to 5.9m (11%) in 2018. In addition, Google recently announced that it will start surfacing podcasts alongside videos, images, news, and web pages related to a user’s search. This will make podcasts more discoverable, allowing an online audience to easily find and listen to them through Search.  Here, Kirsty Marrins lists her top ten charity podcasts, including our sister company Lightful’s charity podcast, Reclaim Social, which interviews people within the charity sector and looks at how they use social media to focus on sharing positive and inspiring news. Although this may require a certain level of time and resources, podcasts are a great way for charities to broadcast their latest news to new and existing audiences in an engaging and accessible way. I hope you found this article useful; if you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to find us on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram! Angharad Francis is a Community Manager at Social Misfits Media, who work exclusively with charities, foundations, social enterprises and non-profits to help better use social media to reach their goals.  Photo credits: Top - Thought Catalog, Bottom - Pete Pedroza.
    3582 Posted by Angharad Francis
  • It can often be difficult to keep up with the latest trends in the digital world. Everything from up and coming artificial intelligence, chat bots and the likes of Alexa voice control, to new releases and platforms updates, can result (and often, not result) in exciting and purposeful change for charities. In this blog, Social Misfits Media’s Angharad Francis takes a look at what we can expect to see in the second half of 2019! E-commerce within apps What could be easier than being able to buy all your favourite products whilst scrolling through social media? According to DigiDay, like social media giants Facebook and Instagram, Snapchat have now released a new feature allowing users to access shops within the app itself. This is powered by Shopify, and aims to increase engagement rates and dwell time within the Snapchat app. For now, this new option to have an e-commerce store within Snapchat is limited to select accounts. However, other social media platforms such as Pinterest and Instagram already allow brands to showcase shoppable products. Creating social media campaigns focusing on e-commerce opportunities could work particularly well around the Christmas period, whereby charities could showcase their goods, such as Christmas cards or clothing, to raise funds for a given campaign. Meaningful Engagement The more engaging a social media platform is, the more time a user will spend on it. One platform doing this well is Instagram, with their Stories feature. From GIFs, to countdowns, to quizzes and polls, there are endless options for users to experiment with, and create engaging stories to share with friends and family. Most recently, Instagram have released their new “Chat” sticker within Stories. This simple feature allows users to ask their followers to join a new chat group. Charities could use this to discuss a new report, a specific goal, or to have a Q&A with their CEO, allowing their audience to gain additional insight into the organisation and connect better online. If creative skills and resources are not a constraint, another new feature charities could use on Instagram is the new AR feature. This feature, created to increase dwell time within the platform, allows users to design their own effects within stories. Charities could use this as a way to create a more personalised experience for their audience, for example if a charity is selling a new product to raise funds, they could use the AR filter as a way for users to try the product on in their story before purchasing. Facebook Groups Although the Facebook algorithm continues to push user-generated content with its meaningful conversations update, platform users are increasingly turning to groups to communicate. Charities can create a group for their organisation, in order to generate organic engagement and awareness, and allow conversation with their audience beyond a Facebook page. Alternatively, if there is a lack of capacity and time to invest in social media, charities can engage in existing groups as a brand. The benefit of this is that instead of setting up a new group, charities are able to communicate with their audience using an already engaged group. This could help them to raise awareness of a fundraising event, locate volunteers or ask supporters to sign a petition. Podcasts The popularity of Podcasts continues to increase, not only with countless new comedy and lifestyle podcasts, but also within the charity sector. In the UK, the number of weekly podcast listeners has almost doubled in five years, from 3.2m (7% of adults aged 15+) in 2013 to 5.9m (11%) in 2018. In addition, Google recently announced that it will start surfacing podcasts alongside videos, images, news, and web pages related to a user’s search. This will make podcasts more discoverable, allowing an online audience to easily find and listen to them through Search.  Here, Kirsty Marrins lists her top ten charity podcasts, including our sister company Lightful’s charity podcast, Reclaim Social, which interviews people within the charity sector and looks at how they use social media to focus on sharing positive and inspiring news. Although this may require a certain level of time and resources, podcasts are a great way for charities to broadcast their latest news to new and existing audiences in an engaging and accessible way. I hope you found this article useful; if you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to find us on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram! Angharad Francis is a Community Manager at Social Misfits Media, who work exclusively with charities, foundations, social enterprises and non-profits to help better use social media to reach their goals.  Photo credits: Top - Thought Catalog, Bottom - Pete Pedroza.
    Aug 23, 2019 3582
  • 19 Aug 2019
    The best charity campaigns are often based on beneficiary narratives. The personal stories of those who have been affected by the issues we address or who have benefitted from our support can be moving, inspirational and add a sense of real urgency to a campaign. However, while these stories are elixir for us charity fundraisers and marketers, we must remember that they are loaned not owned. In many cases our beneficiaries are highly vulnerable people, be it asylum seekers awaiting a decision or young people who have recently escaped gang life. Ensuring the protection and wellbeing of those people who have lent us their stories should always be our priority. In this blog we look at some of the actions we can take to ensure that our beneficiaries and their stories are treated with the sensitivity and respect they deserve. People before stories: Always begin by considering the level of need and life situation of the people whose stories we are telling. However proud we are of what we have achieved, or however perfectly their story fits our campaign goals, if the individual is in a vulnerable situation, or a focus on their past could have any negative impact, we may want to reconsider using their story. Get (Informed) consent: People can only really be deemed to have consented if they fully understand what they are consenting to. We should ensure the people we are working with know how and where their stories and images will be used and that they are aware of any potential repercussions. Use their own words: Being given the opportunity to tell your story can be hugely empowering. However, by equal measure, losing control of one’s story can be damaging.We should try to give our beneficiaries the platforms and opportunity to tell their own story, in their own words.   Protect identities: We must think carefully about what measures should be taken to protect the identities of beneficiaries. Depending on the circumstances and vulnerability of the person we are working with, we may look at changing their names and voices or using actors or illustrative images. Stay positive: The same story can often be told in different ways. Charity campaigns too often paint their beneficiaries as passive victims who were in need of ‘saving’. While the whole point of most campaigns is to show our impact – this should not be done in a way that dismisses the agency of our beneficiaries. Remain media aware: If our beneficiaries are open to talking to the press is vital that we fully prepare them for interviews and that we accompany them if required. Moreover, we need to try to ensure that we only work with sympathetic, trusted journalists and media outlets. Whatever measures we put in place, there is always the potential to lose control of a story and we must be ready to react and provide all necessary support to our beneficiaries in these circumstances. While working with beneficiaries’ stories, of course, comes with challenges – this should not prevent us using them. Not only are real-life stories more engaging and persuasive than anything we could produce from our desks but, I would argue, the ‘nothing about us without us’ principle obliges us to put their stories at the centre of our work whenever we can. It is simply a matter of making this our mantra: people must always come before stories. For more marketing and fundraising tips and guides, why not visit our Resources Page.   
    2692 Posted by Lewis Garland
  • The best charity campaigns are often based on beneficiary narratives. The personal stories of those who have been affected by the issues we address or who have benefitted from our support can be moving, inspirational and add a sense of real urgency to a campaign. However, while these stories are elixir for us charity fundraisers and marketers, we must remember that they are loaned not owned. In many cases our beneficiaries are highly vulnerable people, be it asylum seekers awaiting a decision or young people who have recently escaped gang life. Ensuring the protection and wellbeing of those people who have lent us their stories should always be our priority. In this blog we look at some of the actions we can take to ensure that our beneficiaries and their stories are treated with the sensitivity and respect they deserve. People before stories: Always begin by considering the level of need and life situation of the people whose stories we are telling. However proud we are of what we have achieved, or however perfectly their story fits our campaign goals, if the individual is in a vulnerable situation, or a focus on their past could have any negative impact, we may want to reconsider using their story. Get (Informed) consent: People can only really be deemed to have consented if they fully understand what they are consenting to. We should ensure the people we are working with know how and where their stories and images will be used and that they are aware of any potential repercussions. Use their own words: Being given the opportunity to tell your story can be hugely empowering. However, by equal measure, losing control of one’s story can be damaging.We should try to give our beneficiaries the platforms and opportunity to tell their own story, in their own words.   Protect identities: We must think carefully about what measures should be taken to protect the identities of beneficiaries. Depending on the circumstances and vulnerability of the person we are working with, we may look at changing their names and voices or using actors or illustrative images. Stay positive: The same story can often be told in different ways. Charity campaigns too often paint their beneficiaries as passive victims who were in need of ‘saving’. While the whole point of most campaigns is to show our impact – this should not be done in a way that dismisses the agency of our beneficiaries. Remain media aware: If our beneficiaries are open to talking to the press is vital that we fully prepare them for interviews and that we accompany them if required. Moreover, we need to try to ensure that we only work with sympathetic, trusted journalists and media outlets. Whatever measures we put in place, there is always the potential to lose control of a story and we must be ready to react and provide all necessary support to our beneficiaries in these circumstances. While working with beneficiaries’ stories, of course, comes with challenges – this should not prevent us using them. Not only are real-life stories more engaging and persuasive than anything we could produce from our desks but, I would argue, the ‘nothing about us without us’ principle obliges us to put their stories at the centre of our work whenever we can. It is simply a matter of making this our mantra: people must always come before stories. For more marketing and fundraising tips and guides, why not visit our Resources Page.   
    Aug 19, 2019 2692
  • 06 Aug 2019
    Our Appeal pages are a proven way to raise funds and awareness for a new project or an urgent need. Appeal pages can help you focus your supporters’ attention on a particular issue - whether it be the need for extra funding for specialist equipment to make your activities accessible, funding for unforeseen costs such as break-ins, or urgent support for individual beneficiaries. From a pure fundraising perspective -  Appeal pages are an incredibly effective way of bringing in donations quickly. On average Localgiving groups raise 70% more through appeal pages than through fundraising pages. Over the last 12 months our groups raised an average of  £696 through appeals compared to £405 through fundraising pages. Moreover, Appeals provide an excellent opportunity to build awareness of your cause and grow your supporter community. Most effective Appeals make good use of beneficiary stories - enabling you to  highlight the issues you address and the difference you make in a relatable way. Furthermore, Time sensitive appeals are far more likely to be considered ‘newsworthy’ than a general call for support.  We have hosted and helped promote some truly inspirational, life-changing appeals over the years, ranging from saving community services to flood relief. Here are just a couple of our favourites! The Dahlia Project - Leyla Hussein, a leading anti-FGM activist and psychotherapist, set up the Dahlia Project to provide a safe space and therapeutic support for victims of Female Genital Mutilation. When the Dahlia Project came into financial difficulties in 2017, Manor Gardens Welfare Trust set up an appeal on Localgiving. Through harnessing the power of the traditional press, blogs and support from podcasts such as the Guilty Feminist, the appeal successfully raised over £100,000.       Calderdale Flood Relief Appeal - In December 2015, the Community Foundation for Calderdale launched an appeal in response to the Boxing Day flooding after the River Calder burst its banks overnight. Their campaign raised over £2.5m in total, £250,000 of which was generated through their Localgiving appeals page. The fundraising campaign went on to win several awards. Borderlands - Borderlands, a Bristol based refugee charity, have successfully used Localgiving appeal pages to raise funds for individual beneficiaries and their families. Their appeals have ranged from helping beneficiaries pay for family reunion to supporting them to access legal support to help fight deportations. Through focussing on the needs and narratives of their beneficiaries, Borderlands have consistently given an emotional pull and sense of urgency to their appeals. Since joining Localgiving Borderlands have raised nearly £12,000 through their appeals. So, have you been inspired to set up an Appeal?   As a Localgiving member, all you need to do is log in to your Localgiving charity account and go to the "My Pages" tab and click on the button that says "Create an Appeal Page". You can download our 13 tips for running a successful Appeal here, and remember, we are always happy to help promote your fundraising activities through our social media channels or blog. Not an Localgiving Member Yet? Find Our More
    2900 Posted by Lewis Garland
  • Our Appeal pages are a proven way to raise funds and awareness for a new project or an urgent need. Appeal pages can help you focus your supporters’ attention on a particular issue - whether it be the need for extra funding for specialist equipment to make your activities accessible, funding for unforeseen costs such as break-ins, or urgent support for individual beneficiaries. From a pure fundraising perspective -  Appeal pages are an incredibly effective way of bringing in donations quickly. On average Localgiving groups raise 70% more through appeal pages than through fundraising pages. Over the last 12 months our groups raised an average of  £696 through appeals compared to £405 through fundraising pages. Moreover, Appeals provide an excellent opportunity to build awareness of your cause and grow your supporter community. Most effective Appeals make good use of beneficiary stories - enabling you to  highlight the issues you address and the difference you make in a relatable way. Furthermore, Time sensitive appeals are far more likely to be considered ‘newsworthy’ than a general call for support.  We have hosted and helped promote some truly inspirational, life-changing appeals over the years, ranging from saving community services to flood relief. Here are just a couple of our favourites! The Dahlia Project - Leyla Hussein, a leading anti-FGM activist and psychotherapist, set up the Dahlia Project to provide a safe space and therapeutic support for victims of Female Genital Mutilation. When the Dahlia Project came into financial difficulties in 2017, Manor Gardens Welfare Trust set up an appeal on Localgiving. Through harnessing the power of the traditional press, blogs and support from podcasts such as the Guilty Feminist, the appeal successfully raised over £100,000.       Calderdale Flood Relief Appeal - In December 2015, the Community Foundation for Calderdale launched an appeal in response to the Boxing Day flooding after the River Calder burst its banks overnight. Their campaign raised over £2.5m in total, £250,000 of which was generated through their Localgiving appeals page. The fundraising campaign went on to win several awards. Borderlands - Borderlands, a Bristol based refugee charity, have successfully used Localgiving appeal pages to raise funds for individual beneficiaries and their families. Their appeals have ranged from helping beneficiaries pay for family reunion to supporting them to access legal support to help fight deportations. Through focussing on the needs and narratives of their beneficiaries, Borderlands have consistently given an emotional pull and sense of urgency to their appeals. Since joining Localgiving Borderlands have raised nearly £12,000 through their appeals. So, have you been inspired to set up an Appeal?   As a Localgiving member, all you need to do is log in to your Localgiving charity account and go to the "My Pages" tab and click on the button that says "Create an Appeal Page". You can download our 13 tips for running a successful Appeal here, and remember, we are always happy to help promote your fundraising activities through our social media channels or blog. Not an Localgiving Member Yet? Find Our More
    Aug 06, 2019 2900