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A Guide to Fundraising: how you can get involved beyond tracking litter

You’re picking up and tracking litter already, so what’s next?

Planet Patrol are back and we’re getting closer and closer to achieving our target of recording one million pieces of litter on our app – go Patrollers! Piece by piece, photo by photo, you’re getting us closer to developing solutions that end plastic pollution. The data built up by all of our awesome volunteers is used to hold big brands to account, driving the move away from single-use plastics through change of policy.

We have used our experience to put together some recommendations which might be good to follow when kickstarting your fundraising mission!

1. Research and brainstorm:

There are so many types of fundraising activities which you can organise – we hope that some of the ideas below may inspire you!

  • Make & sell must-have reusable items. If you enjoy crafts, have a go at making and selling reusable bags or masks. You may even already have scrap materials lying around your house that would be perfect for this fundraising project. There are plenty of online resources that you could use to refine your skills, such as YouTube videos, if this is something you have little experience in. Have a look at Agnes LDN, 1 Million Women and Lizzie Outside on YouTube for inspiration!
  • Run a raffle. Make a hamper and sell raffle tickets to friends, family, colleagues and neighbours. As an idea, you could fill it with items that promote zero-waste living, such as metal straws, a reusable water bottle, a tote bag, beeswax food wraps, and shampoo bars!
  • Set yourself a challenge. This could be running a 10K, hiking up a mountain, or picking up litter every day for a month. Within the last two years, we’ve had people rowing across the Atlantic, participating in a Stand Up Paddleboarding Marathon, litter picking on a canal, and completing the Three Peaks Challenge!
  • Get creative and grab attention. Ever fancied shaving your head, growing your beard (or shaving your lockdown one!), creating some litter art, or let people vote and decide! Let people choose how much they want to donate.
  • Introduce a simple donation pot. If you are working from home, put a pot in your home or set up a fundraising page where you and those you are living with can donate the money that you are all saving working remotely. This could include things such as travel costs, buying lunch out, and going for coffee. If you’re having visitors, encourage them to donate too. Encourage your friends and family to do the same. For example, each time you get coffee in a reusable cup, why not donate the amount you saved? Every penny counts!
  • Hold a bake sale! Everyone loves a cake, and that’s a fact. Maybe consider doing a collection and/or delivery service within your local area, where people can request custom orders or choose from a list of your classics… This way, you know exactly what you need to make, and this ensures that no food goes to waste!

It may not be possible to hold in-person events, so here are our top tips and ideas for virtual fundraising activities.

  • Host a virtual coffee catch up or tea break. Invite friends, colleagues or family and ask them to donate the amount they would have otherwise spent on their coffee had they bought it from a shop.
  • Arrange a pub quiz. We’ve all become quiz fanatics over lockdown. Take your weekly quiz night to the next level and use it as a fundraiser at the same time? You could charge a fee for each team and donate the proceeds as the prize.
  • Launch an online gaming competition (or any competition, really!) For this, you can find out which games your fellow gamers would most enjoy playing. You can decide on the exact format and logistics of the event. Again, you could offer a prize to the overall winner of the competition after everybody donating for their entry. For a live tournament, you could use Twitch, or for more flexibility on when people play, use Toornament. If gaming isn’t for you, you could try a bake off or other fun competition!
  • Teach people! Run a yoga class, cooking class, or anything you are good at, for friends and family. Since the start of lockdown, people have become more interested in trying new things. This gives people the opportunity to learn something new, as well as help out a good cause.

To get more people involved, why not try organise a virtual fundraising event?

2. Set up a JustGiving page

This platform allows you to promote your fundraising activity, and contributors can donate directly to the charity or to your bank account. You will also be able to provide any updates on your event.

Find out how to set up your own page here.

3. Start spreading the word!

The more the merrier, right?!

  • Post on your social media to let people know what you are doing and why – include a link to your Just Giving page or let people know how to donate and get involved. Make sure you tag us so that people know where to find us and how they can join the patrol!
  • Create a Facebook event that can be re-shared and invite people. You can find out how to make an event here.
  • For virtual events, you can look into sending out virtual invitations via email – there are lots of free options available and you can save paper. For Zoomers, remember to send the link and any passwords that people need.
  • Mention your fundraising activity at your next work meeting, maybe the company could make a donation, share what you’re doing or if you’re lucky, some companies match what you raise!
  • Reach out to local businesses asking for their support in getting the message out.

4. Plan and prepare

Got all your ideas together and invited everyone? Great! You’re almost ready to go! If you’re a person who likes lists (like us!) you could make a check list so you’re sure you’ve got everything sorted before your event or challenge.

5. Fundraise!!

Donate any offline cash donations or funds received via JustGiving to our website: https://planetpatrol.co/donate/.

We are extremely grateful for all your efforts in fundraising and the donations that we receive – we couldn’t do it without your support!

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