I love crazy charity fundraising. I love it. Why?
-Because it make a massive difference to all of the charities that matter to us all and it can often turn it into FUNdraising!
I love fundraisng, I've said it once again. Love it when people do challenges to fundraise on my behalf, love arranging fundraisers, love seeing the generosity of others and love hearing about others who fundraise.
I also love it because it's mental. A hundred years ago who would have thought climbing mountains, waxing your legs, jumping out a plane and selling cake would become such a big part of society, and something that we all (pretty much) are a part of. Who would have thought trekking, cycling, running would have provided vital services and be funding lifesaving research.
Like who doesn't love buying a cake on the Macmillan Big Coffee Morning day- you support a charity that does amazing work AND you get cake. Win win really!
Let's just say I think the power of cake is wholly under estimated!
When you think about it though, the power of the public for charity is something quite incredible though isn't it? It is the epitome of community, either supporting a loved one, or just (incredibly) donating because they know that money will make a difference, even if they have no connection to that charity or the work that it does.
I love the warm fuzzy feeling that comes from fundraising for a charity. Joey from friends once said 'there is no such thing as a selfless good deed' and this certainly applies to the fundraising from my experience. Knowing the hard work you put in will benefit someone, with you often having had similar circumstances to the people who will be benefitted makes fundraising one of the most satisfying things in the world.
Fundraising is also a great way to raise awareness of a charity as well as raise money. Most people who see bag packers or bucket collector will at lea have a peer at the bucket to see who the charity is and for bigger fundraising event a charity will get a lot of exposure. I have learnt myself actually quite how little people know and have heard about the teenage cancer trust, but after a quick chat they are fairly enlightened on who charities are- another reason why I love fundraising, so many worthy charities simply don't get the exposure they deserve and need.
Of course it's not all about the money, money, money- the giving of time for a charity is priceless. It has an incredible value, as without such time given, perhaps no money would be fundraised. No money in the world would buy the passion and drive for charities that volunteer fundraisers and general volunteers give! There are so so many people out there who are simply unable to pledge money to charity through personal circumstance, but time allows them to still give.
The thing is, I'm only one person and though I've done a lot of fundraising (both pre diagnosis and since) and had a lot of fundraising done on my behalf, alone it is relatively small amount of money. Fundraising, all kinds, the stuff done by others especially (and not because I'm too lazy to do it myself) makes such a humungous difference. I love some of the bonkers things people do to raise this money and I have friends who in the past few months have shaved their hair (!) abseiled off of the Newport Transport Bridge, done many miles of running and have baked cakes for me! Beyond my friends. I know people who have jumped out of planes, bungee jumped, walked over the O2 and gone to climb Everest.
On a fun note, whilst writing this, I had a look on line at some AWESOME charity challenges, and here's my favourite five (could you do one?!)
1. Pay to make 'Baby' Stop.
When students at Evanston Township High School in Illinois wanted to raise money for their cafe/arts center, they decided to subject their fellow students with Justin Bieber's song, "Baby," until they paid to make it stop. Each day the school played the song over the P.A. system, urging students to contribute to the fund. Though they were given one week to raise the $1,000 that they needed, they reached their goal in just three days.
2. Creepie crawlies
Would you spend three weeks in a confined space with more than 300 spiders, including fatally venomous red backs and hairy huntsman? Well that's precisely what Aussie businessman Nick Le Souef did in 2010, all in aid of children's charity Variety. Shoppers were treated to the view, as he set up camp in his shop window. Very. Brave.
3. My Fancy Year.
Do you like dressing up? Eve Hazelton from Devon has thrown away all her clothes and will be living in FANCY DRESS for a YEAR, all in aid of Coppafeel! There's no exceptions, and has been wearing fancy dress to work, the gym, on holiday and at weddings! You can find out more at http://www.myfancyyear.com/ Pretty cool right? Could you spend a year as a pirate, nurse, maiden, cavewoman and more?!
4. Tony the Fridge
Tony 'the fridge' Morrison is an extreme runner and has run hundreds of miles since his 1st Great North Run in 2013. However he runs with a big difference. A 42kg difference that is, because Tony runs with a fridge in his back! He's ran countless races with his fridge, the most notable being Land's End to John O Groats, where he fractured his femur on day 4 and ran 800 miles on a broken leg. Incredible.
5. Naked Challenges
There seem to be a lot of these! From the Naked Clown Dance, to sponsored skinny dips, naked wrestling and the classic calendar, baring all seems to be popular way to raise money, the human body in all it's glory is a donation motivator (though my mum says I'm too young to type any more!)
You can read more of Emily's blogs about the life of a teen coming out of cancer, find out more about her and get involved with her campaigns by visiting www.remissionpossible.org.uk