The power of a strong fundraising team cannot be underestimated, neither can the benefits of partnerships.
As I’ve mentioned more times than any of us can remember, two years ago the club restarted with a stable bank account, but this was very quickly depleted due to the amount of development we needed to do in order to get the club back to a thriving state. We tried to tighten the purse strings, but it was tough. We wanted only the best for our young people, but with funds diminishing, our spirits waned at what we could actually achieve.
A key turning point came less than a year ago with the introduction of our new Fundraising Team, and what a team they are. Over the past year they have worked tirelessly to get us to a really strong position financially, and this is by no means an easy task.
From selling raffle tickets and seeking prizes from local businesses through to writing grant proposals and letters of thanks as donations have rolled in. Their enthusiasm and passion for the club is infectious, so much so that this year we also welcome Laura to the team, and this can only help to strengthen our position as more ideas can be formed and realised, and we can expand how we fundraise and who we approach.
This isn’t the only fusion of people that works and we have been fortunate to have been supported by some excellent partners this year such as Radley College, whose donation repaired the pool table and bought more books for the Book Swap scheme.
The spotlight today though is on John Lewis and Partners who chose us as one of their charities to support. Jenny and I were welcomed to their cheque presentation event. Quite exciting as I’ve never actually held a large cheque.
Aside from the generous donation which will help develop our facilities further, we are able to tap into them for expert advice and resources in the future. Their team are keen to skill share with us, have the young people use their discovery centre, or even send the staff down to help with some of our maintenance tasks. What a boon!
Things continue on an upward path for us, and if you want to continue to be a part of that as we move into our third year with me at the helm, I’d love it if you’d spare a thought for the good work of the team around me raising funds to improve the facilities and all that we have on offer, and be a part of our wider partnership of support.
Our fundraising team put in a lot of unseen hours, so if they appear asking you to buy a raffle ticket, or to consider the 50:50 club or easyfundraising, please don’t just pass them by thinking ‘not another thing’. Remember, they’re doing it for young people who so desperately need a place to go with excellent resources and we can only improve with your support.