There’s a little booklet that comes with the November edition of Runners’ World UK about running for charity: the dos, the don’ts, the motivations, the pitfalls and people’s stories. It’s a nice little book to get your head round if you’ve never thought about doing a running event for a charity before. But there’s a JustGiving advert in the middle of it, which says: Running is tough. Raising money is the easy bit. And to some extent I disagree.
I love entering events and for the majority of challenges I have raised money for a charity. I agree that it can give you drive and purpose. And it’s a way that the non-runners in your life can be part of the experience. The two main charities I have helped have been really supportive: the MS Trust and Pelican Cancer. I have also done quite a few of Cancer Research UK’s runs over the years. It’s a good feeling to be on the long start line with hundreds of other runners wanting to do their bit, try their hardest, push their own boundaries for a good cause.
However, once you get the running and raising money bug, you’ll realise that the money doesn’t always come in so readily as it did at that first big challenge. If people knew you when you were a non-runner, knowing a 5km would push you to your very limits, of course they will inspire you to keep going and donate for the cause. But after doing marathons, after running across volcanoes, after swimming and writing challenges, how can you then do a charity 5km and expect to get the same kind of monetary motivation as before? You can’t. It’s that ‘charity fatigue’ that they talk about in the booklet.
But some clever athlete has come up with a nice idea to keep the funds rolling in as well as giving your givers something back in return. Guess2Give.com is a fundraising site where your donators pledge £3 to guess your finish time in the event, with £2.50 plus gift aid going to your charity and 50p going into the winnings pot. It’s something fun, different and means your wallet weary friends and family don’t have to pledge big donations if they don’t want to in order to help you reach your targets. And they are even more part of the experience – they have a vested interest, let’s say, in getting you out there training, whatever the weather (unless someone bets on the DNF option: Did Not Finish!)
I think it’s a great idea. Check out the website here www.guess2give.com Although my next running event in four weeks’ time won’t be for charity, I’m going to give Guess2Give first dibs on my next charity challenge. Hopefully, some of those fabulous friends and family who don’t think twice about digging in their pockets for me and my charity will also get something back… depending on their faith in me and my finishing time of course!
Posted on October 12, 2012, in General, Running and tagged Cancer Research UK, Guess2Give, MS Trust, Pelican Cancer, Runners World magazine, running, running events, running for charity. Bookmark the permalink. 2 Comments.