How much money was raised?
2017 was a standout year for Challengers, a Guildford-based charity that provides exciting and inclusive play and leisure activities for disabled children. Its main play centre and charity headquarters were gutted by a devastating fire in September 2017, but the charity still managed to hit its annual fundraising target of £1.4m, an increase of 28 per cent on 2016. A new centre opened in February 2018.
How is the team structured?
A few years ago Challengers split the fundraising team so that two members could devote their time to implementing an effective communications strategy. This paid off after the fire when the local newspaper started a fundraising campaign, raising £25,000. The team recognised the potential to turn a disastrous situation around, increasing funds and public exposure.
What is the team’s approach?
Challengers has cultivated strong networks such as Parent Ambassadors, a team of volunteer parents who have become the face of the organisation at its main fundraising events. The charity believes businesses, trustees and community groups are more motivated to help when a parent is present throughout a fundraising campaign. The charity has also focused on growing its Business Club, which now has 35 members making regular contributions. Business Club members come together for a series of flagship events with high-profile speakers such as the Chancellor, Philip Hammond, as well as a series of more informal networking meetings. This year the Business Club has raised £287,000.
Campaign Against Living Miserably
Action for Children
Coventry UK City of Culture Trust