Third Sector Excellence Awards: Fundraising Event

Youth - The Funding Network encouraged young philanthropists to pledge support for charity pitches.

Youth - The Funding Network event
Youth - The Funding Network event

Criteria:
For an innovative event that achieved or exceeded its targets

Judging panel:
Dawn Austwick, chief executive, Esmée Fairbairn Foundation
Mike Barnes, director of marketing and business development, Direct Marketing Association
Eric Grounds, director of fundraising, Sue Ryder Care

Finalists:
Institute of Cancer Research
St Joseph’s Hospice
Save the Children UK
Scope and Capability Scotland
VSO
Youth – The Funding Network

Winner: Youth – The Funding Network
The team at YTFN admit they were amazed at the success of their first fundraising event, which was held in June 2007. The organisation, which is an offshoot of The Funding Network, encourages philanthropy among young people by raising funds for local, national and international projects.
The team chose a live format previously used by TFN but invited only people aged 20 to 26 to the event. It aimed to raise a total of £1,500 for three charity projects previously selected by the YTFN committee.
The event brought in more than £1,000 per project. A benefactor also agreed to match the money raised, making the total £6,882. Tickets for the event, which was held at a café in London’s fashionable Brick Lane, were sold on the TFN website.
A live band set the mood before a member of the YTFN team welcomed guests and explained the proceedings, which revolved around the three projects each being given six minutes to present a pitch to win £1,000 in cash and volunteer hours. Members of the audience were encouraged to call out their pledges in response to the pitches. The money raised at the event was split between the three projects.
Dawn Austwick, one of the judges, said there was no harm in adopting tried-and-tested ideas. The idea isn’t new, but they have successfully adapted it to target the 20 to 26-year-old age group, she said. Creating a culture of giving in young people is something really worth applauding.

Highly commended: The Institute of Cancer Research
The organisation has held its annual fundraising campaign, TacheBack, since 2003 to raise money for prostate cancer charity Everyman. TacheBack encourages men to seek sponsorship for growing a moustache for a month.
In 2007, the institute modernised the idea to create TacheWars, an interactive website allowing participants to post regular progress photos to encourage competition between fundraisers. Adverts were also carried in national and regional newspapers, London Underground sites and male public toilets.

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