This is a new Award that builds upon to the Fundraising Awards that ran in previous years. The reason for changing the name is to extend the range of entries to show how technology can support giving in all its forms, through donations of time and expertise as well as money. The winner in this category could include organisations and individuals delivering a number of activities, including:
- building the new digital tools that help fundraisers in their work;
- designing and delivering successful digital campaigns;
- recognising new ways of working which impacts on the contribution people can make to a cause.
The Awards are being run in conjunction with NFP Tweetup, an informal network for people involved in digital communications for charities and other not for profit organisations. The range of members of the NFP Tweetup network shows the variety of ways that the web, social media and other digital technologies are having an impact on how charities generate support.
New tools for fundraisers
For many fundraisers it’s easy to forget how quickly services like My Donate and JustGiving have revolutionised how we collect funds. It’s now very easy for supporters to give money and to raise funds through their networks when they’re taking part in a sponsored run or similar activity.
Hot on the heels of the established players there all sorts of new ideas, such as enabling people to give through Twitter. A good example is previous winner Pennies.org.uk, which uses technology to enable people to donate off the change from every transaction they make on their credit card. We hope to see more ideas like this being submitted this year.
Beyond the act of handing over the money there’s also been a huge change in the way that charities are communicating through digital channels. Many charities, whether large or small are running campaigns that maximise the opportunities offered by social networks and the widespread use of video and other media. To some extent these campaigns can be seen to extend traditional campaigns. Charities are using digital/online channels alongside their offline activities, to promote their cause and generate action around fundraising campaigns that already had a life of their own.
This Award is a great way of showcasing the best examples of these campaigns – where the reach and cost-effectiveness of digital is used in creative ways and the results are shown in the bottoms line, whether through increased donation, greater awareness of a cause or other kinds of giving.
Childs i Foundation, last year’s winner of the Digital Fundraisisng Award, showed how they baked digital into the fabric of their work – making sharing a key p[art of how they build their supporter base and meet the needs of the people they exist to support.
New ways of giving
There are also many examples of new ways of giving that digital technology is making possible. These may not be brand new ideas but the growth of crowdsourcing, crowd funding and open-source-style collaborative projects is harnessing the internet as a platform for new ways of working together for a common good. For example the way that so many volunteers responded to create maps of Haiti which were a critical part of the aid efforts when Hurricane Sandy hit.
By extending this Award we hope we can show that giving is moving beyond the simple act of donating money. The web is helping create new ways of sharing time, expertise and other knowledge to support a cause you care about. And as we become more familiar with the tools we’re seeing all sorts of new ideas building on the success of previous projects.
If any of these sound like you, please enter the Digital Giving Award now!