I used to work for a charity, and so am really aware that fundraising can be really, really hard. It takes a lot to get people on board with a cause, and we are so often asked to give that we can just get fed up and burnt out.
So it’s been fascinating to have been involved with two big charity projects this year that have done some really magical things.
The #titsoutcollective ran throughout July, with creatives all over the world making and buying things inspired by the amazing Countess Ablaze. She started it (accidentally) with a knitting yarn that the she created in response to an approach from a business to get lots of things for free in return for ‘exposure.’ She raised £3,000 for charity the sale of. that. Then in July, she rallied 287 people to make were making things and donating a portion of their profits to their favourite charities. You can find out more about it all at the Countess Ablaze website here.
By the end of the month, a staggering £55,219 had been raised for those charities, including a whopping £8,000+ just for Mind through a raffle! It was all a bit overwhelming to be honest. The community buy-in and the way everyone was able to so quickly pull something together was inspiring. And the Countess herself, with her huge community of Instagram followers, fans and her general all-round kick-ass presence meant that something huge came together almost instantly. You can read about my contribution to the project here.
Meanwhile, the Flower Power Fund, a year-long project which was started by knitter Sarah Holmes in January with a goal of £1,000, has been smashing its target over and over again. Also based in the knitting and crafts community, every month there are new goodies for sale that donate a portion of their proceeds to Marie Curie. The engagement and supportive vibes that are involved in this project are so lovely, and I’ve made so many new friends. It’s awesome!
By the end of June we’d raised £9,121.63 😀
I keep thinking about both of these projects with my charity hat on and pondering exactly what it is that makes them so successful, and in a way it’s something that charities themselves would struggle to replicate because it starts at the community level. Although Sarah works for Marie Curie, its not on the fundraising side and she’s managed to connect with a ready made big and quickly growing audience of enthusiastic and bought-in people.
I am absolutely LOVING working this way, and would love to here from you if you would like any help from me for your charity or fundraising projects, do say hello :