The Muscular Dystrophy Campaign is testing its first hard-hitting appeal depicting a child who has died from the disease as part of a drive to boost revenue from £6 million to £10 million by 2007.
Trustees at the charity have agreed to invest in areas including direct marketing to try and break through its £6 million income ceiling. The charity hopes that this new direction plus a face-to-face drive will encourage younger donors to offer their support.
"The messages we usually use in our direct marketing are fairly soft and show children who look happy and relatively healthy,
said Elaine Bennett, fundraising and communications director. "This new campaign will startle a lot of people who didn't realise that muscular dystrophy is fatal."
The direct mail pack tells the story of Kiyan who died from the muscle wasting disease when he was five months old. It asks the charity's 14,500-strong donor base to support its work to find a cure. If the campaign is successful, it will be tested in a donor recruitment drive next year.
The charity has just completed a 5-year strategy that sets an ambitious target of generating £10 million in voluntary income by 2007.