Having to juggle various commitments is an unavoidable part of a fundraiser’s life!
You’re all probably experiencing this to a certain degree and learning in the process how to prioritise, how to manage your time better and how to multi task.
No one more at this point maybe than Tearfund ICS volunteer Rose Sinclair, who with a fundraising target of £1500 and a full time position as student nurse raised £1500 in 5 weeks! Let’s hear her story....
Working around the clock
“During my fundraising I worked an average of 37.5 hours a week made up of 6 hour, 8 hour or 12.5 hour shifts and one of the weeks I was working nights.
The placement time was busy too, I had competencies I had to have signed off by a mentor and days I had to manage the ward! I was really anxious about managing to arrange fundraisers alongside placement, so I did have to manage my time well and be organised, jump on any opportunities and use fundraisers I could arrange simply. I also had to learn to ask for help from others, but everyone I spoke to was so generous and supportive. Some of my initial ideas didn’t work out, but other opportunities presented themselves and I just went with it, so don’t worry if your master plan falls through, there are so many possibilities.
Getting support from the community
My first activity was selling baked goods at my church, I absolutely love any excuse to bake so I sold something different every week. Over 4 Sundays I raised £101.61! I then continued with this theme and had a bake sale at a free community fun day my church organises, which 700+ people from the local community attended to enjoy free rides.
To help with this I did ask for baked donations from my church as well, and people really came through for me helping provide, I raised £134.70! Someone had advised where/how I could do bag-packing, in 2 Saturday afternoons that raised £213.97! I was inspired by someone else who fundraised for Tearfund by going barefoot for a month, while I couldn’t do this due to my nursing placement I organised a sponsored barefoot 2.5 mile walk to a local waterfall, which raised £276.03. I also raised awareness at my parent’s church, giving out bara brith at an event showcasing works of the church, people donated £67.20!
Using your time
It’s wonderful that Rose had such strong networks and community links she could approach for support – but most importantly she knew her time constraints so concentrated her efforts on activities she knew would bring on money, and pitched her ideas appropriately to her audience.
Rose’s parting words of wisdom for her fellow fundraisers is – “Use the updates on the Just Giving page! I thought people would get tired of me sharing it to Facebook, but I could see the donations coming in soon after a new post as more people were reached each time. Some people donated who I didn’t expect to and when people see how active you’re being they want to support you”. Rose has learnt a little life lesson too since starting her fundraising journey –
“I am definitely now more appreciative of what it’s like when I see others doing similar things, which has made me more generous.”
Using creativity - Abi's fundraising story
Another volunteer hard at work and equally excelling in pitching her ideas to her audience is Challenges Worldwide ICS volunteer Abi Calver, who managed to entice her friends to donate to her fundraising in very creative ways. Here’s what she had to say...
Doing it differently
“I wanted to do something a bit different from the usual runs, cycles and bake sales so I asked my friends and family to come up with different dares and challenges for me to do in the build-up to my departure.
- The challenges have all been very different and I’ve been pushed well outside my comfort zone on several occasions! Examples of challenges include:
- eating as many sausages as I can in 5 minutes (surprisingly easy!)
- spending a day dressed as a unicorn
- wearing a bra on my head for an entire day (probably the most embarrassed I’ve ever been!)
- walking around with really bad make-up on
- doing 100 burpees in 5 minutes (brutal)
- introducing myself to 10 strangers and telling them what I’m doing with ICS (surprisingly one of the biggest challenges for me)
- living without a phone for a day (more difficult than you think…)
- and letting myself be doused in ice-cold water.
It’s been a lot of fun and I’m no longer easy to embarrass! I’ve enjoyed it because I’ve been able to involve lots of my friends and family and everyone has really got behind me.”
Getting others involved
Abi’s so-called friends had a great time in thinking up the most toe curling and challenging things possible for her to do! But it worked! The most important things you need to ask yourself when beginning your fundraising is; will my family and friends be impressed by this?; would people support this?; is this relevant and impressive? No one knows your networks better than you, so make sure that you think of the best ways to include your friends and family and that they have the opportunity to get stuck in with your fundraising activities too!
As Abi has learnt – “Definitely involve your friends and family – make it as much about them as about you and what you’re doing. If people feel invested and part of something, they’re much more likely to give you support. Also, do something fun – if you’re enjoying your fundraising it’ll make it so much easier!