Friday, October 9, 2009

Charlotte Parker is joining the Costa Rica and Nicaragua Autumn 2009 expedition and received the Raleigh Graduate Bursary Award

I decided I wanted to do one sponsored event to raise the majority of my funds for Raleigh, rather than several events and risk annoying people by nagging them to sponsor me several times. I chose to do an indoor, gym based ‘triathlon’. This involved me running 5k, cycling 17.5k and swimming 2.5k (100 lengths) which at 25k is roughly 10% of the distance that will be covered on the trek phase of the expedition. I asked friends and family to sponsor me, as well as getting family members to take round sponsor forms to their place of work, and altogether I managed to raise about £500 just from this one event. I also baked cakes to give out whilst asking people to sponsor me as I found that this made people a lot more inclined to give money!

I have also gathered together old books and DVDs to sell on Ebay or Amazon, but this was one of the challenges of fundraising – with such little time to raise the funds it was hard to sell anything, but the plan is to continue selling the items after I return from the expedition, to replace the savings that I have had to use for things such as kit and vaccinations.

Another challenge was writing to companies, many explained that due to the current economic downturn they could not afford to donate any money – some explained that they have already given large donations to various charities this year.

I found that the website http://www.justgiving.com/ was invaluable for persuading my old university friends who I no longer see regularly to donate to my cause, it gave me a chance to explain why I was raising money, as some initially thought they would be giving money for me to go on an extended holiday.

Monday, October 5, 2009

Fundraising for the Raleigh Graduate Bursary Award

Luke Argall is going on a 10 week expedition in India this October as part of the Raleigh Graduate Bursary Award. Find out how he raised the money for his expedition:

Fundraising was definitely a challenge but a thoroughly enjoyable one. After finding out I was going on the expedition I immediately looked for the nearest car boot sale to me. I then sent a text to everyone on my phone asking them for their old junk which I could sell and hopefully raise my £200 deposit. Getting up at 6am was no fun, especially when it was raining but I thought better of it and set off. It was a long day but a friend came down to help me, with his car full of the stuff I couldn’t fit in mine, and I ended up with £130. This along with some of my weeks wage got me deposit and so I was away.

After chatting with a few friends about the best way to raise money, someone mentioned about doing the Yorkshire 3 peaks challenge. This is to walk around Pen-y-ghent, Whernside and Ingleborough in less than 12 hours. I thought this would be perfect thing to do as I’m not much of a trekker and I thought it would be good to do something similar to what I’ll be doing in India. 6 of us did the 3 peaks walk on the 10th September and again, after a very early start, we did the walk in just under 11 hours. The sense of achievement after finishing the walk was unbelievable and something I’m looking forward to experiencing again in India. Thanks to my mam taking in sponsor forms to her work and church and the five friends who did the walk with me, I raised around £300.

I wanted to try and bring everyone’s attention to what I was doing and so I got in contact with my local paper. I had a phone interview which lasted about half an hour and the paper sent someone to take my picture. The write up was published in the following weeks paper and listed all the events I had set up and what I was doing to raise the money. This included the url for the just giving page I set up which came in fantastically useful as I have a lot of relatives who live in Australia – this was a quick and simple way for people to donate and I raised over £300 online.

I organised a charity football match which was my football team – Bingley Town FC against a team of my friends. This was very successful and I raised £110. I also held a charity fundraising night which helped me raise over £300. I charged people 5 in and with that they got their first drink and a bowl of curry free. After that I charged a small fee for food and beer. I had gone round my home town weeks before the event and asked local business’ if they could contribute in someway – I got some great raffle prizes including family cinema and bowling tickets, a cycle helmet and a motor cycle racing jacket. After the event I sent the businesses a letter thanking them and telling them how much I raised (I also included the certificate that came with the Raleigh welcome pack).

Organising so much in such a short amount of time was a really big challenge and I was very close to cancelling the charity night after thinking people weren’t going to turn up. I stuck at it though and had a really good night and it was all worth it. The satisfaction of organising things and them going really well is immense and when people are there to support you and tell you how proud of you they are, it makes it all worth while and makes you look forward to going even more.

Find out more about the Raleigh Graduate Bursary Award