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Fundraising volunteers – turning £10 into so much more for good causes

Now in its eighth year, the £10 Challenge, organised by the Institute of Directors East Midlands and supported by Nottingham Business School and the Development and Alumni Relations team, inspires students to come up with inventive ideas to turn £10 into a lot more for the John van Geest Cancer Research Centre.

Student lifting weights to raise money for good causes
One of the Fundraising Five in action

Running as a virtual event this year, the challenge formed part of a module for Nottingham Business School (NBS) students. This year, over 40 groups took part – the highest number in the event’s history.

Social distancing rules meant some traditional fundraising activities were not possible, but that was no obstacle for this year’s most successful group – the Fundraising Five. Comprised of NBS undergraduates, the group undertook a seven-day fitness challenge. Raising awareness for the exceptional work of the John van Geest Cancer Research Centre, each challenge was informed by a different cancer statistic. For example, 150 squats equalled the number of new UK breast cancer cases each day. Overall, the combined efforts of every student raised £7,205 – a remarkable achievement given the constraints of fundraising during a period of national restrictions.

Speaking about their achievements, the Fundraising Five said: “We are over the moon about the amount raised. When the campaign first started, we were worried if we’d even hit £100, but as the donations rolled in, we were absolutely blown away. Giving towards such a great cause has made it feel unbelievably rewarding.”

Despite the challenge of taking part during a lockdown, the team were determined not to let it dampen their spirits: They said: “It was difficult in the initial brainstorming phase. Most of the previous year’s fundraising ideas had been on the ground, so we were a bit stuck for inspiration. But when we came up with the idea and figured out a social media strategy, it was relatively straightforward.”

With all the money raised going to support the John van Geest Research Centre, the Fundraising Five found it easy to remain motivated, commenting: “Cancer is obviously an issue that affects us all in one way or another, so the emotional connection is obviously there. Just knowing what the money was going towards was a big motivating factor for the team.”

Summing up their achievements, the fundraising team gained a lot from the experience: “There are two main things we’ve learnt. One, how to work and operate as a team, making sure deadlines are met and being able to compromise with each other. The second being how to effectively use social media to get the cause and our campaign out there.”

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