Focus: Campaign of the week - Marie Curie eyes £4m daffodil pot

Hetal Sheth-Pathak

This week marks the 20th anniversary of Marie Curie Cancer Care's annual flagship Great Daffodil Appeal.

The charity provides free home nursing for terminally ill cancer patients and is this year hoping to raise £4m by getting members of the public and supporters to make donations and wear its daffodil pins. The campaign is supported by the Yellow Pages and will run throughout March.

Each daffodil pin costs Marie Curie Cancer Care just over 4p to make, but donations are left to the discretion of each individual - most choose to give between 50p and £1. The pins, promoted by musician-turned-gardener Kim Wilde, will be distributed by charity collectors on the street and sold in shops and schools.

The Great Daffodil Appeal includes several other fundraising initiatives, including the Mini Pots of Care daffodil kits, the sale of Principles/Marie Curie Cancer Care necklaces and Back to the Shop Floor, which is based on the BBC series Back to the Floor - it invites company staff to sponsor their senior managers to spend Friday 24 March doing something that is not generally part of their work.

The charity is aiming to raise £150,000 from the Back to the Shop Floor initiative, which was inspired by the Irish Cancer Society's staging of the event since 2002. It employed the agency Bright to develop the creative concept and design the logo and leaflet for participating companies.

Publicity for the appeal has been mostly through the press, but also included a radio interview with a Marie Curie nurse and the project manager of Back to the Shop Floor.

In the Mini Pots of Care project, schoolchildren were each given a daffodil bulb to plant last autumn. They have since been collecting sponsorship while nurturing the bulbs, before they bloom this month. BBC Watchdog presenter Julia Bradbury is promoting the Marie Curie Cancer Care charm necklace, which will sell in Principles shops for £15.

Freya Moseley, PR executive at Marie Curie Cancer Care, said: "We have posters displayed on many soap sets and have sent the daffodil pins to MPs and presenters to wear throughout March."

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