THRIVE THROUGH CORPORATE SOCIAL RESPONSIBILITY : Looking at Ethics of Fundraising Challenges; Fundraising Challenges - Are They Really a Worthy Cause? Nicky Conway, Strategic Adviser at Forum for the Future Takes a Personal Look at the Implications
Byline: Nicky Conway
An increasing number of charities generate funds through organising fundraising 'challenges' such as reaching the summit of Mount Kilimanjaro or cycling the Great Wall of China.
One consequence is that companies are flooded with requests for donations from individuals trying to raise sponsorship. For most, there is an expectation that each individual will have to raise around pounds 3,000, of which approximately one-third covers the costs of the trip.
I, rather rashly, signed up to trek to the base of Mt Shishapangma, the highest mountain in Tibet at over 8,000m to raise funds on behalf of Scope, the charity for people with cerebral palsy. I had a vague idea that the most challenging part of the 'challenge' would not be reaching base camp at Mt Shishapangma, but raising pounds 2,900, despite using personal funds to help cover the cost of the trip.
A festival in Leamington Spa agreed to let me run a raffle, and Forum for the Future also agreed to let me hold an auction. Trying to get prizes, I trawled around hundreds of companies, which made me think hard about this kind of sponsorship.
Faced with a barrage of requests for sponsorship, most of the big companies now donate to just one or two charities. This narrows the field to charities withthe resources to target big corporates - and individuals trying to raise money for sponsorship or less well known charities are being left high and dry.
In the same way that big business and multi-nationals dominate our towns and cities, so too may they begin to dictate which charities and community initiatives survive. …