Thursday, February 11, 2010

Pik Yan reflects on fundraising for Raleigh Hong Kong’s annual event, the ‘Raleigh Challenge - Wilson Trail’, and also for her expedition to India

I graduated from university with an honours degree in 2007 and then worked in a PR and event management company as a Project Officer for two years before I joined the Raleigh expedition.

I helped Raleigh Hong Kong to hold their annual fundraising event, even though I was fully employed, and my job required me to work overtime quite a lot.

‘Raleigh Challenge - Wilson Trail’ is an annual fundraising event of Raleigh Hong Kong, which has just celebrated its 10th anniversary last year. This 2-day-1-night mountaineering competition requires participants to form a team of 2-4 and trek along Wilson Trail, one of the famous trails in Hong Kong. Venturers can raise fund for expedition by taking part in the organising committee and help organising the event. The funds raised are also used to support different voluntary services in Hong Kong, Mainland China and overseas, such as youth development projects, environmental campaign, and community building projects.

For fundraising for my expedition, I mainly raised from friends and colleagues by sending mass messages to all of them in my Facebook. In the message I told them I am going on an expedition, I briefly explained what Raleigh is, what it does and ask for their support to make my expedition possible. I also updated my status in Twitter and MSN to let everyone know that I am fundraising for my expedition. I used an online donation form which made for easy management of donations.
The internet is a really good tool for fundraising; you can raise money from friends overseas. Fully utilising the internet did make my fundraising easier and I was also able to create a good response.

From sending messages to friends and creating an online donation form for friends to fill in, followed by an online database for a donation record and online banking for checking my donation status. By the messages and status updates in different internet socialising sites, good responses are generated. Friends replied really quickly. They can donate through different channels at their convenience.

Challenges: When I was working on my individual fundraising as Raleigh was a relatively low profile charity in Hong Kong compared with other charities, it took greater effort in introducing Raleigh and explaining what it is about to my friends and seek their support.

Now I’m home, I realise I have learnt a lot about Indian culture. And I also gained a chance to face my inner-self which helped me understand more about myself. It is a life-long and memorable experience, and I have definitely broadened my horizon and scope. I had a great time in the expedition and I enjoyed it a lot.

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