Fun Fundraising for Good Causes
Liam Purkiss from FURN Gaming talks us through how to setup a gaming charity fundraiser. Sorry, FURNdraiser.
So, you want to fundraise?
Good! It’s something that I reckon everyone should attempt to do at least once. Plan, organise, and run your own fundraising event. It definitely helps with your organisation skills, it looks good on your CV, and you help your favourite charity gain more funds to spend on the good work you do! Me and the FURN crew are on our third running year of organising a fundraiser (the FURNdraiser, as it’s known), and we keep making them bigger each year. At this point, I think I can safely say I’ve got a good handle on how to organise and run one.
First things first
You need to know what you want to do for your fundraiser, when you’re going to do it, and you need to know what charity you’re doing it for. Now, the charity will always be a personal choice. FURN goes with Mind, because mental health issues are something quite close to ours, having had to deal with our fair share of them, and Mind do fantastic work supporting people who suffer, and raising awareness of the issues. Yours can be whatever you want; maybe the work of a particular charity helped someone you know get through a tough time. Have a think about what issues are important to you, then find a charity that hits those key issues. Make sure to contact them and let them know your fundraising for them. Most of them will send you a pack to help you out!
As for the event, there’s literally hundreds and hundreds of things you could do. You do a cake sale, shave your head, run 10km, go skydiving, swim the English channel. There’s so many options.
My recommendation: either do something you really enjoy (that’s why the FURNdraiser is based around video games, board games, and tabletop games), or something you’ve always wanted to try, but couldn’t bring yourself to do. The additional motivation coming from the support of your family and friends will push you to complete the scary thing! As for when, that just needs to be something to match your timetable!
Next, you need to start letting people that you’ve got a fundraiser going, and you’re accepting donations! I would recommend setting up an online donation page (we use virginmoneygiving ourselves), and share that link around on the various social media handles you have. That will help it gain some reach and traction, and make your family and friends now what’s happening. Also shoot the link to them directly, and ask them to share too! People who don’t know you will donate, if the charity is a cause they agree with. Also mention it to people you see every day, at work. If your company allows it, an office wide email with a link is a good way to get some donations rolling in.
Roll with the Problems
Now, you’ve got everything organised beforehand. You’ve got some donations already given, and it’s the day of the event. DON’T WORRY IF SOMETHING GOES WRONG. You’re going to already be stressed/nervous/tense/excited. Don’t sweat it if/when something goes wrong. Just think about what you need to do to fix it, and go through those steps.
We’re on our third year of running the FURNdraiser, and we fully expect for something to go wrong.The first year, we started 6 hours late because things came up. Second year, we were 2 hours late for the same reason. We’re expecting to be late again! Just go out there, fix the issues, and enjoy it. You’re going to feel amazing once it’s over!
It’s Not Finished…
Which leads to the next point. It’s after you’ve finished your fundraiser. But it’s not time to get off the pedal yet! Now you’ve completed your event, you can continue to push for more donations (obviously depending on what it is. Might be a bit difficult with a cake sale…). Show people what you’ve done, and just keep asking.
Virginmoneygiving keeps your page open for 3 months after the date of the event, so make sure to use all of that!
And that pretty much sums up fundraising. After you do it once, you might catch the bug like FURN did, and want to do it more. And I fully recommend doing so. It’s long, tiring, and stressful, but it’s entirely worth it at the end of it all!
And now, the FURNdraiser 2018.
This year, we’re doing 48 hours of board and tabletop gaming, covering a huge variety of games. You can donate at furngaming.com/fr18, and watch all the action as we go live from 12pm BST Friday 24th August until 12pm BST Sunday 26th August on twitch.tv/furngaming.
It’ll be a lot of fun, it’ll be messy, and it’s all for a great cause. Thanks for reading, and good luck in your own fundraising adventures!
Liam Purkiss – Taught me how to TPK