Background: Transaid was initially set up after a review of Save the Children's operations highlighted that development organisations did not have the necessary professional and transport distribution knowledge.
Given that up to 25 per cent of the children's charity's budget could be spent on transport in an emergency, it realised that access to high level transport experience was vital to ensure that donated funds were spent effectively.
Transaid was initially established as a voluntary organisation made up of leading figures in the transport industry and headed by Dr Geoffrey Myers, the international president of the Chartered Institute of Transport.
After undertaking a successful number of transport and logistics initiatives in countries including Mozambique, Namibia and Ethiopia, the charity was established as an independent organisation in 1998. Unlike other transport organisations in the developing world, Transaid does not just donate vehicles but helps to maintain transport networks, develop logistical frameworks and build capacity in local communities.
Aims Transaid has always relied heavily on transport industry sponsors.
Since its establishment, its supporters have always been industry specific and included leading players in the sector such as the British Railways Board, TNT and P&O.
On its emergence as an independent charity, this support continued with donations from Stagecoach, White Arrow and other transport organisations.
The charity wanted to run a campaign that would help to develop and strengthen ties with its current sponsors, while encouraging other transport industry figures to adopt Transaid as their own cause.
How it worked The charity recruited ad agency Seriously Bright to develop a campaign that would closely tie its sponsors to the Transaid brand and create awareness of its objectives.
An advertisement fashioned as a season's greetings message thanking sponsors for their support was placed in trade industry magazine Motor Transport in December 2002.
Motor Transport donated free space for the advertising and Seriously Bright helped to negotiate slots for current sponsors to feature their company logos within the advertising in return for a donation to Transaid.
Results The campaign raised more than £28,000 for Transaid through corporate donations. It also strengthened relationships with current and new sponsors, 11 of which made their first donation through this advertising mechanism.
The number of calls and level of support throughout the transport industry also increased significantly since the ad ran in December 2002.
"The recent campaign not only raised a substantial amount of funding for our cause, but also helped us to develop further support throughout the transport industry," said Lara Lopez, fundraising manager of Transaid.
"There is a definite feeling that the transport industry has adopted Transaid as its own cause."
Following the success of the Christmas campaign, the charity is launching a second campaign in March to raise awareness of how transport can improve access to health and education. The campaign will commence in March 2003 and run in the transport trade industry press.