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At uni? No time? Here's how Imogen fit fundraising around her life

Summer is supposed to be a time when we kick back and relax, but we know that it can be the busiest time of year for our ICS volunteers with exams, work, weddings, holidays and of course fundraising.

We asked Imogen an ICS volunteer who managed to juggle lots of amazing fundraising challenges and events around a very busy summer to share her fundraising experiences.

volunteer car boot sale

No money and no time

Imogen Bunyard started her fundraising when she was at university in the midst of dreaded final year deadlines.

“I had basically no money and no time as I was only a few weeks away from the end of my final year and was right in the middle of working towards putting up my final exhibition, so was very hesitant to start what felt like an enormous task."

Imogen decided to try a food based sponsored challenge that wouldn't eat into time so she took on the £1 A Day Challenge and lived off of £1 per day for seven days. Imogen made sure to make time for posting about the challenge over social media every night and soon had lots of donations flooding in.

“I also hosted a curry night at my uni house and invited my friends who donated money for my home cooked meal and those who couldn’t attend but still wanted to donate did so via my just giving page. Unfortunately my first batch of curry ended up all over the stove as the pot I was using cracked in half but this didn’t ruin the evening.  This was a really fun event as I organised it just before I moved back home so got to say goodbye properly to lots of people and made some money doing so.” 

Car boots and coffee mornings

When Imogen left university she rallied friends and family together to make her fundraising a team effort. 

“Once I had moved back home I did a car boot sale with the help of my amazing parents and managed to get rid of a huge amount of stuff that I had accumulated over my 3 years of university. I did another car boot sale as my last fundraising activity and this time had lots of friends donating unwanted items to me after mentioning that I was looking to do another, which was a massive help. One Sunday I had a small stall in my mum’s friend's stunning garden as her and her neighbours were having an open gardens event. This was a really fun day as I got to talk to lots of people about my upcoming volunteer work who had never heard of ICS!” 

Imogen made use of her Depop account which she used to sell on vintage clothes and her sister also baked some very tasty cheese straws to sell at family member’s workplaces – what a great way of using your networks to help you fundraise!  

To boost her fundraising even more Imogen organised a coffee morning at her house.

"Everyone bought tonnes of treats and strips of raffle tickets and there were definitely tonnes of tea drunk. When I was inviting people to the event I had people donating raffle prizes and offering to bring along an array of cakes to be sold on the day.  This made such a difference to the event, it turned out to be much more successful than what I could have organised just by myself. My parents had also managed to sell raffle tickets at both of their works places in the days leading up to my coffee morning so that boosted the total raised through that event.”

Smashing deadlines

As a result of Imogen’s brilliant networking and planning she managed to reach her full £1500 target shortly after her halfway deadline!

“I was terrified to start fundraising as I have never done anything like it before and £1,500 is a big target when you’re not really sure where or how to start. However I found that people really want to get involved in fundraising and are always happy to help anyway that they can. I also think it’s really important to try and cover as many audiences as you can. It is really hard to keep asking the same set of people to donate money to your cause, so wherever possible focus your efforts towards different people each time. And most of all just get talking and have fun, the more you tell someone about what you have planned the more they can help you and point you in the direction of someone or an opportunity for furthering your fundraising efforts.”

Well done Imogen! Fundraising can always feel daunting at first which is why it’s important to get in touch with your Fundraising Support Officer if you need help coming up with a successful fundraising plan like Imogen’s!

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ICS is funded by the UK's Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office (FCDO), which projects the UK as a force for good in the world, including reducing poverty and tackling global challenges.

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