Fundraising - hints and tips
More and more of our members are getting involved in raising much-needed cash to help The Rabbit Welfare Association & Fund carry out its work to improve the lives of pet rabbits in the UK by spreading the message that a hutch is not enough…
Hopefully you've seen our Get Involved page, which focuses on activities to raise awareness, as well as some fundraising ideas like using Justgiving.com when doing a sponsored event or sending an online card with charitygreetings.com. This page gives some more fundraising ideas and some good hints and tips which should put the fun into fundraising.
All fundraising helps us, however small it may seem. We are a small charity and despite our success, we are by no means a household name. So remember that every time you do any kind of fundraising, you’ll not only be raising money for the charity, but also letting people know all about the Rabbit Welfare Association & Fund, and why we do what we do.
Put the fun into fundraising for the RWF
The most important thing to remember is that it can and should be fun! If people can see that you are enjoying yourself then they are more likely to come and give you money!
It’s a good idea to enlist the help of friends, family, neighbours and work colleagues, or if you are part of a Hopper Group then you’ve got a ready made team!
So here are some suggestions to help get you started… Remember, we can supply collecting boxes and posters to catch people's attention. Just contact us. Once you have collected your donation, you can submit them to us in a variety of ways:
Car boot, table top and garage sales
Have you got cash in the attic that could help rabbits? A car boot sale, garage sale or table top sale is a great reason to finally clear out all that clutter. And you can also gather sellable stuff from your friends, neighbours and family to sell too. Unwanted books, outgrown toys, ornaments, all kinds of bric-a-brac and even clothing: one person’s rubbish is another person’s treasure.
Generally a table top or a pitch at a car boot sale will cost £5 or £6 for the day. Charities can often obtain reduced rates or no charge at all so it’s worth a try letting the organiser’s know you’re raising money for the RWF, providing them with the registered charity number ( 1085689)
and seeing what discount they offer. Always look for the larger venues as these attract larger crowds, meaning that you are likely to sell more.
If you’re planning on having a garage sale of your own, make sure you have plenty of notices around your neighbourhood, in local schools, churches, community centres and newsagent’s windows a couple of weeks before the date of your sale to make sure everyone locally is aware it’s happening. Make your house look inviting with posters and balloons, sell tea, coffee and biscuits to your visitors. If you have children then why not get them involved, they’ll love it!
Collections outside large stores
Generally, as the larger stores are situated on private property, then you only need the permission of the Store Manager to have a collecting box outside their premises. Some may even supply you with a table or chairs, but they may have certain conditions on where you are allowed to sit or stand, and how long you can stay. If the event is to be during Easter, you may be able to persuade the Store Manager to provide hot cross buns or, at Christmas, free mince pies. Why not wear a pair of rabbit ears to really get people’s attention!
Collecting in your local town centre
There are very strict rules governing the collection of monies by charities, although some do differ. Generally the local council will only allow one charity to collect on any one day. Collectors must be positioned designated distances apart and may not rattle their collection tins at the public as this is deemed to be begging. Applications must be sent to the council well in advance, as they have to process the applications and allocate the dates. It is advisable to apply in the autumn for dates required the following summer. Paperwork must be completed by the charity after the collection day, submitting the collection figures.
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Garden open day
If you have nice, well stocked, attractive garden, why not open it to visitors for the day? It’s a great way of making friends in your area, and a great chance to show off your lovely garden! Charge an entrance fee, sell tea and coffee and perhaps have a tombola or a colouring contest to keep kids interested.
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A sponsored walk, swim or slim
You can get sponsored for just about anything – the most traditional events are walks, runs and swims, so if you are fit and healthy then look out for events in your area. Then there are the high-adrenaline events like half marathons and marathons, bungee and parachute jumps – so if you are thinking of doing an event like this then please choose the RWA&F as your charity. For these bigger events you may want to maximize your sponsorship by using the online donation site, Justgiving.com, on which we are a registered charity.
RWAF member, Alan Wilson - "I raised over £1,000 for the RWAF by doing a sponsored sky-dive. It was something I've always wanted to do so I thought why not make some money for this great cause at the same time? I registered with JustGiving.com and was amazed at how the donations flooded in. I quickly realised that just by doing the sponsored event I was making people aware of the RWAF and all its good work".
As well as the traditional events like those shown above, you can also do a whole host of other things. If you’re looking to get in shape then why not try a sponsored slim and ask friends, colleagues and family to support you. Or why not get some peace and quiet and get the kids to do a sponsored silence? Use your imagination, think of something fun that will get people’s attention…. Rabbits…. hmmmm….. a sponsored hop?
You can either collect online for your event through justgiving, or download our sponsorship form. Just remind everyone who is a tax payer, to tick the gift aid box on your sponsor form as up to a third of the amount raised, can be re-claimed by the charity.
Collect used stamps
That’s right, this old method of raising money still works! And you don’t need any energy for this one either! Cut around the edges of the stamps stuck on the post you receive, as closely as possible and without damaging the stamp, wait until you’ve collected quite a few and take to your local Post Office. They will pass on to dealers. The Post Office will pay you for the stamps based on their weight, but will reject batches if there is too much paper around the stamp.
Please remember to take your package to the post office to be weighed and not to guess the weight of your package, as the post office charges a handling fee of £1 even if you are only a penny underpaid. Therefore if the postage is underweight, we may even be paying more in postage than the stamps are worth!
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Work dress down day
Sweet talk your boss into letting you stage a dress-down day – where the staff can come to work in casual dress for the day. Discard stuffy suits and ties, high-heeled shoes and tights and come to work in comfy t-shirt and jeans, or what-ever you like, for a fee of £1 per person. Or if your workplace doesn’t have a dress code, then go one step further and have a fancy dress day?
You can do this on its own, or combine it with a dress-down day (above). Make some cakes, flapjacks, brownies and any other goodies and sell them at work, with your boss’ permission of course! It’s surprising how many people appear at your desk if you have goodies on offer!
Or you could arrange a permanent tuck shop in your workplace and continuously raise money for charity. Buy discounted treats from pound stores or when on sale in the supermarket (ensuring still in date, of course) and resell for a slightly higher price, with all profits going to the RWA&F. Again of course, make sure you get the OK from your boss first!
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Bring and buy produce sale
Can you bake a cake that would put Delia’s to shame? How about your jam/fruit bottling or wine making skill? If you’re pretty good in the kitchen (or even if you’re not, but you can whisk up an edible treat) then why not host a bring and buy home-made produce stall – nobody can resist freshly prepared home-produce. Ask your friends, family, colleagues and neighbours for a small amount of money for one of your delicious home-made goodies.
You could combine this with a garden open day, garage sale or car boot sale mentioned above.
Garden bring and buy morning
Gardening and gardens has had resurgence in recent years, with more and more people wanting to make their little piece of Britain as beautiful as possible. And people are always looking for bargains. Do you have plant cuttings that you can sell? Cut flowers, or a glut of fruit or vegetables? If so then why not hold a garden sale? Ask members of your local allotment society if they will donate. Friends, family and neighbours could also bring their donations. Remember to advertise a couple of weeks in advance so you have lots of interest. Again, this could be combined with a garden open day or garage sale.
If your vet's surgery, garden centre or a local pet shop hasn't got an RWAF collecting box, why not ask them if they would take one?
To obtain a collecting box please contact us . Please give your full postal address and where the collecting box will be located. Please ensure that the box is positioned in a safe place and can not be stolen or tampered with.' and checking with the manager / owners of the place where positioned, who's responsibility it is to ensure its security as the person placing it there won't be able to watch over it 24/7.
Once in place you will need to check the box regularly, emptying when necessary and sending the money to us. .
Friends and Family Meal
Are you a domestic god or goddess? Why not invite friends and family for lunch, dinner or supper and charge a set fee to donate to the RWF. You don’t get much more relaxing ways to raise money for our worthy cause!
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Do you tend to spend your weekend mornings in bed until midday watching TV? Why not put those mornings to good use by offering your car cleaning services to your neighbours. Clean their car for a fiver... You could always get the kids to do it, if you fancy a lie-in!
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Do we Need all Those Gifts?
More and more people are finding gifts at events like Christmas, birthdays and weddings a little bit wasteful and would rather the money went towards something more worthwhile. If this sounds like you, ask friends and family not to give you a gift, but instead to donate the money to the RWF instead.
You could do this by producing a little card with a message on it to explain what you are doing and why you want the money. Include our web address www.rabbitwelfare.co.uk so they can donate with a credit or debit card online. Or ask for cheques payable to the Rabbit Welfare Fund. Don't forget to produce a similar styled card to say thank you so they don’t forget you next year!
If you want to have a friendly chat with our volunteer co-ordinator, Maxine Gower, then please drop her an email on firstname.lastname@example.org. Maxine has done an awful lot of fundraising for the RWAF and is only too happy to offer support and ideas.