Creative Fund Raising

If you're going to get creative then you've got to have some fun; as Actor, John Cleese, once said "If you want creative workers, give them enough time to play."
Stratford Half Marathon attire
Getting creative doesn't need to involve a pad and pen, artist's easel or a pair of knitting needles.  In fact you may only need a bath full of cold beans or running shoes and an Epilepsy Research t-shirt!

This week I'm taking my 'Do Something Creative' resolution in  a different direction.

Q.  If you were asked to raise money for your favourite charity, what creative ideas could you come up with?

Here are a few of my favourite ideas...

  • Dress up in fancy dress at work or school
  • Have a bake sale
  • Sponsored walk, swim or car wash
  • Shave your head! (Okay this one may be a bit drastic but it certainly worked for Jessie J on Comic Relief recently)
  • My son's friend, Laurence, has given up his bed for lent and is asking people to sponsor him, quite an amazing achievement for a 12 year old - Well done Laurence, we're very proud of you.

Simon Johnson and Liz Green
When I lost my 24 year old cousin, Lee, in December 2010 to SUDEP (Sudden Unexplained Death from Epilepsy), our family and friends began a campaign to raise awareness and funds for Epilepsy Research.  My Aunt and Uncle started the 'Lees Smile' Charity at an amazing Gala Ball held at Elland Road Football Stadium in Leeds, hosted by the wonderful Liz Green from BBC Radio Leeds where we raised a massive £80,000. 

Lee was such an amazing athlete and this prompted many of us to get involved in sporting events; the Manchester North Run, Stratford Half Marathon, sponsored swim, football and cricket events and the Three Peaks.  On top of this we've had coffee mornings, ladies lunches and fashion shows.  My children's school even dedicated an entire week to fund raising for Epilepsy Research and raised £2175. 

By being creative with your fund raising this helps to raise much needed awareness towards your chosen charity.

Aside from the funds and awareness, one of the other benefits of being as creative as you can be is the chance it could lead somewhere amazing.  Take Cassidy Megan for instance.  She founded Purple Day back in 2008 after struggling with her own epilepsy; she is a young girl who had a big creative dream.  In 2009 her creativity went international when the New York based Anita Kaufmann Foundation and Epilepsy Association of Nova Scotia joined her campaign. 

On March 26th we are all being encouraged to wear purple for Epilepsy Awareness Day, everyone is getting involved, even the Blackpool Tower will be turning purple for the day!

Me at No 10
For our fund raising efforts we were given an opportunity of a lifetime.  To help celebrate Epilepsy Research UK's 20th Anniversary in 2012, we were invited to No 10!  YES, I said No 10!  What an amazing day.

So if you fancy doing the Hugh Grant (Love Actually) dance down the corridor of No 10 - yes I actually did that - or drinking the PM's wine then get your creative head on and think up some fabulous ways to fund raise for your chosen charity and if you don't have a favourite then please feel free to join us and Smile With The Stars at 'Lees Smile'.

I am all set to do a massage-a-thon (it helps that I'm a holistic therapist for this of course) but I would love to hear about your creative fund raising, please let me know what you've done or what you have planned - leave me a comment below.


Next week on my resolution challenge we will be having a go at doodling - intrigued?  You should be, see you next week.

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