In the midst of a global pandemic, Give as you Live Donate teamed up with Power2Inspire to create the very first mch.london virtual boat race, raising over £25,000 for the sport inclusion charity. We spoke to the charity to get an insight into what made their event such a success:
What virtual events have you utilised the GAYL fundraising pages for?
“So far, only the 2020 mch.london virtual boat race, but it was such a success that we plan to repeat it this year and in future years. Also, we are now discussing with other sports and clubs how we might adapt other sports and activities to the virtual arena. The platform makes this a realistic and exciting prospect.”
What communication channels did you use to promote your fundraising events?
“Advised by the award-winning PR agency, GingerMay, we engaged with the mainstream press, both national, internal and regional; regional and national radio with interviews on BBC 5 LIVE, and news coverage on Radio 2 and Radio 4. GingerMay estimate that over 20 pieces of print and digital secured a potential audience of 700 million.”
How have the donations raised through the fundraising pages supported the charity’s work so far?
“The £25k raised (including Gift Aid) allowed us to employ someone for the first time in two years. Alex Laybourne came in as part time Deputy CEO, taking on social media, grant making, and developing our festival of inclusive sports series.”
Could you provide us with an overview of the experience your charity has had using the Give as you Live Donate fundraising pages?
“Give as you Live Donate are a strong, reliable, imaginative and flexible partner. They grasped the novel concept of the virtual boat race speedily and were keen to embrace the needs of the event, which required changing the back-end technology of the website pages. This allowed us to create team pages for each of the Oxford and Cambridge crews, dispensing with the need for individual fundraising pages – this was crucial as we did not want to pressurise individual participants into competing against each other, but we did want there to be rivalry between the crews. Even a potential issue with reporting was resolved quickly, tactfully and imaginatively.”
What was the key service that Give as you Live Donate supported you with above any other fundraising provider?
“Taking control and responsibility for the design and delivery of the landing page, including accommodating the key video of the virtual boat race. This involved partnering with the film editors and the rest of the team including project managers mch.London. Our experience of other fundraising platforms as a small charity is that we have to accept their offers with little scope to change it, certainly without any IT intervention on our part. With such small resources this sort of assistance is vital.
“Give as you Live are real partners: they wish their ‘clients’ to benefit from the fundraising. They approach the relationship as partners rather than as dictators. We look forward to many years of a continuing mutually beneficial relationship.”