surrey

Untitled design (1)

Employee, Business, Community

We have over 20 years experience in matching corporate volunteering activities with local not-for-profit groups. In 2021 we facilitated the employee volunteering of 530 local business volunteers with North Surrey charities. Lockdowns and social distancing were not a barrier to 63 team events and Christmas saw a bumper year of Angel Tree Gift donations by local business employees to vulnerable members of our community. More than 1,300 gifts and monetary donations of £25K have supported 23 charities and their beneficiaries.

So, why is corporate volunteering good for business? Raising your profile and building customer confidence is key to business success. Encouraging your employees to volunteer has been shown to build a positive company-consumer relationship. 88% of consumers said they were more likely to spend money for a company that supports and engages in activities to improve their community.

Recruiting and retaining excellent employees is another reason for engaging with communities. Creating a better work-life balance is becoming increasingly important for employees. By facilitating a workplace culture where your employees are encouraged to support their causes by volunteering, builds a stronger more productive and connected team. Tackling a real issue and providing a solution is a morale boost for volunteers and creates pride in their socially responsible company.

Why do you need us to help you? We have a unique insight into the charitable sector of North Surrey, with strong connections to charities and voluntary groups and a good understanding of what they need and who is best placed to help them. Many of our community and voluntary sector organisations have little or no budget and will really value your enthusiastic volunteers. Whether it’s indoors or outdoors, gardening or helping at a children’s party, using your skills or learning new ones - VSNS will find a project that fulfils the passions of your employees, and enables you to do something truly rewarding as a team.

We are already putting challenges in place for 2022 and looking forward to a busy, exciting year of employee volunteering in North Surrey. Our services are at no cost for you or the charity.

Contact tj@voluntarysupport.org.uk to discuss how we can help you connect.

Add a heading (2)

Micro Volunteering

Do you want to volunteer but the same old reasons of not enough time or unable to commit to a long term role keep holding you back?

Micro Volunteering is the answer - bite-size tasks with no commitment to repeat and with minimum formality, involving short and specific actions that are quick to start and finish. It's a perfect way for you to do something good or give back, mostly from home, because 80% of micro volunteering takes places online.

We've put together a variety of microvolunteering ideas and there really is something for everyone:

Post Pals volunteers send cards, letters, emails and small gifts to seriously ill children and their siblings in the UK.

Pachamama Project volunteers make reusable sanitary pads for refugees worldwide

Be My Eyes is a free app that connects blind and low-vision people with sighted volunteers who lend their eyes to solve tasks big and small to help blind and low-vision people lead more independent lives.

FCancer volunteers donate their skills by the hour to support cancer charities (eg. photography, coding, writing and design) and help beat cancer.

Campaign to End Loneliness has ways for you to get involved locally or nationally with campaigns and ideas.

Dementia Friends volunteers learn about dementia so they can help their community by raising awareness and understanding.

Give Nature a Home volunteers build homes for nature where they live.

United Nations Online Volunteers (UNV) allows volunteers to team up to address sustainable development challenges – anywhere in the world. Some of their projects do require a little more time and commitment.

Zooniverse enables volunteers to take part in real cutting edge research of all kinds, from classifying galaxies to counting penguins to transcribing manuscripts, there's a project for everyone.

Missing Maps volunteers help to map areas where humanitarian organisations are trying to meet the needs of vulnerable people. Many of the places where disasters occur are 'missing' from any map and first responders lack the information to make decisions regarding relief efforts.

Furlonteer connects skilled professionals with remote volunteer opportunities. If you’ve been furloughed, are taking time out, searching for your next role, or employed with time to spare they have opportunities for everyone.

Remember - many people doing small actions can make a big impact!

vmg

Life after Virgin Money Giving

Virgin Money has announced the closure of Virgin Money Giving, taking effect on 30 November 2021. The closure is unwelcome news for many of us in the UK charity sector and it raises important questions about the viability of donation platforms in the face of competition from other payment methods.

The good news for charities is that there are now lots of ways to collect donations:

But, for those of you who would like to continue using fundraising platforms because of the features and support they offer, here are your options from Charity Digital: https://charitydigital.org.uk/topics/topics/the-best-online-fundraising-platforms-for-charities-5324 

and an interesting podcast on the subject that's worth a listen https://charitydigital.org.uk/podcasts/podcast-virgin-money-giving-and-the-future-of-fundraising-platforms

More information:

https://charitydigital.org.uk/topics/topics/video-five-digital-fundraising-platforms-your-charity-should-know-about-9232

https://www.bhibcharities.co.uk/advice/the-best-online-fundraising-platforms/

 

 

Add a heading

Why do I need a charity newsletter?

Nonprofit newsletters get some of the best average open rates in email marketing (26%). Newsletters provide important opportunities to showcase the work you do, make appeals for donations and other support and raise awareness of the problems your charity tackles. Use your newsletter to connect with donors and volunteers, encouraging them to take action.

Email drives more charitable donations than any other online channel. 42% of donors prefer to hear from causes they support by email, 20% of donors said that emails made them more likely to donate again and 69% of subscribers said they were more likely to donate after receiving an appeal for a specific need.

Everyone gets more emails than they can ever read. A typical email receives no more than 15 seconds of attention - so make yours stand out. Use images, a good subject line and engaging opening paragraph. If a reader is not interested at the opening of your newsletter, they won’t read what comes later.

What else should you do?

  • ensure that your newsletter can be read on a mobile device.
  • personalise (use recipient names)
  • all non-profit newsletters should include a call to action - usually a request for donations, volunteers or an ask to social share
  • keep text to a minimum and focus on 1-5 stories or calls-to-action
  • have your donate button and social media icons at the top of the newsletter
  • enable social sharing
  • use images and video screenshots linking to your website or YouTube
  • send on Tuesday, Wednesday or Thursday - avoid Mondays and Fridays

Finally, remember you cannot email anyone without their permission, but you can build your email list by:

  • have a subscribe button on your website
  • promote through conversations with supporters
  • run a specific list building social media campaign
  • offer donors the option to subscribe in thank you messages

Subscribe to our e-news here!

More reading:

https://getanewsletter.com/en/blog/newsletter-introduction-examples-how-to-write-catchy-intros-for-your-newsletters/

http://www.thestorytellingnonprofit.com/blog/5-non-profit-newsletters-to-learn-from/

https://knowhow.ncvo.org.uk/campaigns/communications/e-newsletters

https://charitydigital.org.uk/topics/topics/everything-you-need-to-know-about-email-marketing-software-8734?

charity website

What does a good charity website look like?

The best charity websites are kind to users – not overloading them with choices or too much text, and instead making calls to action obvious and ensuring that users can easily find further information as needed. Here are our top tips to improve your site:

  • Give your website visitors what they want! Make your home page menu clear with no more than 6 options. Users need to be able to find what they need quickly so make your messages clear and concise to avoid overwhelming users with too much information. Guide Dogs is a great example of a clear, user friendly website with https://www.guidedogs.org.uk/
  • Be clear what your charity does, how website visitors can support you and what support means to the lives of your beneficiaries. Charity Water does this really well https://www.charitywater.org/uk
  • Use images for instant impact - donors respond to campaigns that feature a single, identifiable beneficiary. Care International UK has faces of beneficiaries on every page https://www.careinternational.org.uk/fighting-poverty
  • Make sure your website is device appropriate. You must consider how it's being viewed on smart phones, iPads and tablets. Comic Relief looks good on all devices https://www.comicrelief.com/rednoseday
  • Payment or sign-up processes should be as simple as possible. Not too many steps to complete and don't ask for unnecessary information in long winded forms.

More reading:

What Makes a Good Charity Website?

https://www.theukdomain.uk/what-makes-a-great-charity-website/

gaming for good (1)

Gaming for Good

Gaming and livestreaming were already big before the pandemic struck but participation has really taken off.  This is good news for charities because it gives us a new avenue for fundraising that appeals the generous Generation Z.

The idea may seem strange but gaming fundraisers are popular and effective https://fundraising.co.uk/2021/02/03/6-successful-gaming-for-good-livestreaming-campaigns/

How does it work?

Gamers share game playing with their friends and other gamers, who tune in to watch the game in action. This is called streaming and there are there are several platforms dedicated to gaming, the most popular is called Twitch, which was built specifically for streaming games. The gamer adds a donate buttons to their stream – like a donate button on a charity website which links to the gamer's fundraising page on a donation platform like JustGiving.

By hosting a donate button on screen, gamers engage their audience into making donations in return for gaming activity. A gamer could host a 24-hour gaming marathon or they could host a tournament with other gamers.

If you want your charity to run or help run a gaming fundraiser, try reaching out to local gaming communities or looking for gaming events that have occurred in your area. Maybe someone on your  charity team (volunteer/supporter/member of staff) has a passion for video games, and they can help organise hosting or participating in a gaming fundraiser. Look for gamers who might be interested in your cause https://charitydigital.org.uk/topics/topics/gaming-for-good-how-to-find-gamers-9003

More Reading:

Top tips for successful livestreaming and gaming for good

Just Giving Gaming

How to Get Started with Gaming Fundraising

Fundraising on Twitch

 

Impact Measurement Tools

Measuring Impact

You know that you are doing good things and your beneficiaries agree with you - but the only way to prove it is to set targets and collect data.

To inform your supporters, partners and funders you must measure what kind of difference you are making. Measuring your impact is essential and ensures you are achieving what you set out to achieve.

If you're new to impact measurement then go to the Inspiring Impact website and read about the impact assessment process and best practice. The Small Charities Coalition have put together a list some free and low cost impact measurement tools for when you're ready to get started:

impactasuarus.org

stateoflife.org

goodfinance.org

socialvalue.org/social-value-tools

outcomesstar.org.uk

measurewellbeing.org

Text to give

Text to Give - Donations by Phone

When did you last pick up your mobile phone?

When did you last use your phone to pay for something?

84% of the UK now own a smartphone - putting the internet in their pocket. On average people spend 2 hours and 34 minutes online on their smartphones every day. People can browse the internet, shop, view social media and download apps that allow them to do endless tasks.

It's not new, but the text-to-give process might be the answer for those charities looking for a safe, hygienic giving method that follows social distancing rules. It's a good option for donors too because it's quick, they use their own phones and they don't need to enter credit card information. Charities set up custom keywords preset to a specific donation amount and accept donations in a few quick steps.

£50 million was given in text donations in 2019, making it a serious fundraising contender as more and more people become comfortable using their phones to make payments.

To get started you need a text to donate service provider - have a look at the t&cs of DonrDonate or instaGiv for more information.

https://merchantmachine.co.uk/digital-wallet/

https://charitydigital.org.uk/topics/topics/the-best-uk-charity-text-donation-services-5632

https://www.whitefuse.com/blog/text-to-donate-giving

https://snowballfundraising.com/text-to-give-guide/#basics

https://www.nptechforgood.com/2021/08/01/how-to-effectively-share-text-to-donate-campaigns-on-social-media/

Copy of Copy of LEGACY FUNRAISING IS

Legacy Fundraising in 5 steps

March is Free Wills Month. More than half of UK adults don't have a will and this month it's possible to get a solicitor-written will in return for a small charity donation.

The publicity behind this campaign and Remember a Charity Week later in the year, is a great way for you to introduce/promote a legacy option in your fundraising messages. Here are the fundamentals to get you started:

  1. change the narrative because legacies are not about death - a gift to charity makes a lasting difference, not only for the next generation but for future generations https://stephenwgeorge.com/10-of-the-best-words-to-use-in-legacy-fundraising/2
  2. make it normal by including legacy fundraising in your everyday supporter conversations, emails and charity literature and on your website https://legacyvoice.co.uk/legacy-fundraising-tip-drip-your-legacy-message/
  3. tell stories to help your supporters see the difference their #legacy gift will make and include in all your charity fundraising marketing materials  https://www.goodworksco.ca/upon-time-telling-perfect-legacy-gift-story/
  4. make it easy for your supporters to find the information on your website or ask you a question https://blog.justgiving.com/5-charities-with-stand-out-online-legacy-fundraising
  5. watch the video from Directory of Social Change https://youtu.be/wmY4T57GvAM

Remember that as fundraisers you should be aware of the law - the Fundraising Regulator has the specifics regarding legacies https://www.fundraisingregulator.org.uk/code/specific-fundraising-methods/legacies

virtual

Top Tips on Organising a Virtual Event

The biggest barrier to participation in a virtual fundraising event are the mechanics of how to get involved.
Here are our 4 top tips on how to organise a virtual event and make it easy for your supporters:
1. Have simple instructions and a central place to sign up and get information. Ideally, a page on your website dedicated to the event and using a tool like Eventbrite.
2. One of the best things about fundraising events is being with people who support the same cause as you. Help participants interact with one another on social media by creating event hashtags and by posting supporter stories on your website event page.
3. Create a fundraising toolkit for your participants, including things like graphics, ideas for social posts or emails, and tips for setting up a personal fundraising page.
4. The biggest benefit of taking your event online is that your fundraiser can last all year. Rather than having one set date for the event, supporters can now sign up to do a virtual walk anytime, making this one-off fundraising opportunity work all year-round.
© Copyright 2017 Voluntary Support North Surrey. Privacy Policy. Registered Charity Incorporated Organisation Number 1141587