More than 100,000 pioneering fundraisers have now used JustTextGiving to raise funds for charity - more people than can watch a match in Wembley Stadium.
More than 100,000 pioneering fundraisers have now used JustTextGiving to raise funds for charity. That’s more people than can watch a match in Wembley Stadium and we think that’s pretty amazing. It’s a huge milestone for JustTextGiving by Vodafone, and it’s an even bigger step for the charities involved, as together those fundraisers have managed to raise more than £10,000,000.
It’s amazing to think that JustTextGiving has been around for only two years. During that time, over 18,000 charities have used JustTextGiving, and many more have benefited from the hard work of fundraisers who’ve raised money by text.
The service has also won some fantastic accolades during the past couple of years, including the Prime Minister’s Big Society Award. When presenting the award, David Cameron said:
“Vodafone’s JustTextGiving service has revolutionised the way people give to charity and many other groups that form part of the Big Society benefit from it. The idea of enabling people to donate to charities using their mobile phone is so simple, but by having the vision to use its technology and make it happen Vodafone has helped millions reach charities that need it.”
Earlier in 2012, JustTextGiving was also recognised by the Charity Times Awards, picking up a gong for the ‘Best Use of Technology’. Judges at the awards explained that it had “revolutionised the way we fundraise, and giving in the UK.”
Despite the awards, though, it’s the people using JustTextGiving who are making the biggest difference. We spoke to Rachel Mann, a determined fundraiser from Hampshire who managed to raise more than £3,000 in her latest challenge – running five marathons in five consecutive days.
She explains: “A lot of my donations have come through by text message. I went on and on about JustTextGiving because I thought it was an easy way to donate. People haven’t always got money on them, but most will always have a mobile phone wherever they go.
“I had a pink vest printed with the details of my charity, what I was doing, my text code and the number to text. I know that some people did spot it and text when I was running the marathons, as when I got back there were loads of anonymous text donations – the people I knew left messages as well. JustTextGiving definitely helped to get people I don’t know donating, especially when I started promoting it on Twitter.
“A lot of people asked how it works. Once I told them it just gets added straight to their mobile phone bills, they were more than happy to make donations by text.”
Plenty of charities have also embraced JustTextGiving, such as children’s charity Tree of Hope. Jeremy Marris, the CEO at Tree of Hope, explains:
“We run a lot of campaigns to help children around the country, and they all have a JustTextGiving code as well. We try and put our JustTextGiving code everywhere – in our signature, in all our literature. We’re at the beginning of something here, and I think we could do a lot more.”
The Royal Marsden Cancer Charity also benefited from JustTextGiving recently, the charity’s Digital Manager, James Higgott, explains:
“The £11,000 raised for The Royal Marsden Cancer Charity through the JustTextGiving process for Rally Against Cancer was an amazing amount. We promoted the number on all our fundraising materials. It provided supporters with a quick and easy way to donate to us without having to access the internet or provide cash there and then – and importantly allowed us to easily track income back to the event.”
The milestone shows just how much of a difference JustTextGiving can make for charities and fundraisers, and it hasn’t gone unnoticed by Vodafone’s partner JustGiving. JustGiving Managing Director Anne-Marie Huby explains:
“JustTextGiving has really taken off among fundraisers and charities – people are using text codes to encourage giving in really creative ways. It’s supremely easy to do, so it encourages spontaneous acts of generosity. It also really complements JustGiving’s online platform – donors can now truly give wherever and whenever they want – by text, through a smartphone or tablet, or on their desktop.
“To see 100,000 fundraisers signing up is fantastic as it shows that people are really embracing the concept. We’re seeing mobile become increasingly important as a giving platform, and text is a perfect medium to capture a moment of emotion. We’ve seen a lot of creativity around that, it’s the moment we are together, and fundraisers can say ‘get your mobile out and give right now’.”
The Vodafone Foundation’s Andrew Dunnett echoes the positive sentiment: “We knew that JustTextGiving would be special when the service started, and we’ve been so pleased to see individual fundraisers making the most of text donations in their own fundraising for the first time.”
Text donations have also proved incredibly popular with younger people, and Andrew adds: “Research from last year shows quite clearly that the under 25s are much more likely to give to your cause via text donations than to open a laptop or desktop and to go online, and that’s a really exciting prospect for us.
“It’s great to win awards, to be recognised for the impact we’re having in the charity world and to have given individual fundraisers a new way of raising money.”
So what is it that makes JustTextGiving so popular? Perhaps it’s because every single penny goes to the chosen charity, the text is free, or that you can use it on any major network in the UK and that it’s also easy to add Gift Aid.
Gift Aid has proved particularly popular for those donating, with over 40 per cent of donations increased by the inclusion of Gift Aid. That’s the highest percentage we’ve heard of for any text donation platform, anywhere in the world.