What a night! We’ve been celebrating the achievements of our amazing community at the annual JustGiving Awards. All of us feel incredibly privileged to have heard your stories and celebrated your success with you. A huge well done to all of the winners and finalists!
We’re incredibly proud of our amazing community of fundraisers, charities and companies that have done such amazing things on JustGiving over the last year.
Thank you so much for making the JustGiving Awards without a doubt, our favourite night of the year.
So, without further ado, the winners are:
- Most Popular fundraiser – Yogscast
- Young Fundraiser of the Year – Lauren Gander
- Most Creative Fundraiser – Alison Powell
- Endurance Fundraiser of the Year – Dave Heeley
- PayPal Fundraiser of the Year – Simon Adams
- Charity of the year (people’s choice) – Aspire
- Most Creative Charity of the Year – Mencap
- Best New Charity – Rett Syndrome Research Trust UK
- Celebrity Fundraiser of the Year – Richard Parks
- Vodafone mobile fundraiser of the year – STV Charitable Trust
- Workplace fundraiser of the year – Barton Willmore
- Best use of Technology – Merlin
- Lifetime Achievement Award – Harry Moseley
About the winners -
Most Popular fundraiser – Yogscast
To date, the target amount of £60,000 has been raised for Oxfam through Yogcast’s JustGiving page, a global charity that sends locally sourced and vaccinated goats to families living in poverty. This appeal was set up to encourage people to donate money that would buy goats for families in developing countries as Christmas presents. The more goats bought the better so donations are still welcome – a goat is for life, not just for Christmas.
Young Fundraiser of the Year – Lauren Gander
Over the past four years, Lauren has raised a phenomenal £100,000 for numerous charities including children’s charities The Tree of Hope, Dreamflight, Sasbah and The Children’s Trust. Despite the daily pain and discomfort Lauren experiences as a result of suffering from spina bifida, Lauren has tirelessly undertaken many fundraising activities, including a glider flight over Sussex and climbing 288 steps to the top of Newport Transporter Bridge in Wales before launching herself from top of a 200 ft high zip wire – a magnificent achievement. In January last year, she even slept outside in a cardboard box to promote homeless services.
Most Creative Fundraiser – Alison Powell
Alison’s’ fundraising activity started as a bit of a dare and a request via Facebook – to get at least 250 people to join her in a skinny dip to create a Guinness World Record. With 413 people willing to take on the challenge, Alison made the event a fundraising effort for the Marie Curie Cancer Care charity. The fundraising activity achieved well above and beyond what it set out to, with over £250,000 raised. The event garnered notoriety in the press both at home and abroad and there was a great sense of personal achievement for all who participated. Oh, and of course the Guinness World Record was secured.
Endurance Fundraiser of the Year – Dave Heeley
When Dave was ten years old, he was diagnosed with Retinitis Pigmentosa, a rare eye condition that causes the eyes to deteriorate, eventually resulting in incurable blindness. Now aged 54, Dave is completely blind, but he doesn’t let this hold him back from supporting Macmillan Cancer Support. To celebrate Macmillan’s centenary, Dave, an experienced marathon runner and fundraiser, set himself his biggest challenge yet: to run and cycle from land’s End to John O’Groats, but with a difference – starting in August 2011 he ran and cycled a colossal 1,000 miles in just 10 days.
The event raised widespread awareness and raised over £70,000 as well as giving Macmillan great exposure regionally and nationally.
PayPal Fundraiser of the Year – Simon Adams
When in October 2009 at the age of 46, Simon was diagnosed with motor neurone disease and given two years to live, he set about making those two years count – and planned to raise £1m for Motor Neurone Disease Association to find a cure and help other sufferers. Simon inspired and organised friends and acquaintances to raise money. Hundreds ran for him in the Plymouth half marathon and the school children of Plymouth ran for him the day before. A three-team rugby weekend, a ball, fundraising dinners and auctions were staged by friends around the country.
When he died in October 2011, Simon had already raised £334,000, a significant part of the MNDA’s annual £12m fundraising target – so much so that the MNDA fundraising director speaks of the ‘Simon Adams Effect’.
Charity of the year (people’s choice) – Aspire
Aspire provides a practical support to those who sustain spinal cord injuries, offering a range of services to new patients in the NHS Spinal Cord Injury centres, to those who have just been discharged from hospital and to people who have been living with their injury for years. Aspire’s goal is to help take someone from injury to independence.
Most Creative Charity of the Year – Mencap
Mencap works with people with learning disabilities to change laws, challenge prejudice and support people to live life as they choose.
The Mencap Spellathon, the first ever global multi-platform English speaking interactive game competition, is presented by ‘The Professor’, a 3D ‘spelling bee’, voiced by Stephen fry. The Professor guides people through a series of fast moving games which are free, fully digital, animated and interactive, and cater for all ages and abilities to help improve spelling and literacy skills. While practising for the annual global Spellathon Championships, spellers ask family and friends to sponsor them for each word they spell correctly, with schools receiving 25% of the funds they raise.
Best New Charity – Rett Syndrome Research Trust UK
Rett Syndrome Research Trust UK funds research and aims to raise awareness of Rett Syndrome in order to accelerate treatment for girls and women with the syndrome. Since its inception in June 2012, the charity has already delivered over £400,000 to 12 research projects with a further £100,000 committed to those projects in March 2012. Fundraising efforts have included a group of parents and children participating in the Adidas 5k Women’s Challenge in September 2011 which rose over £19,000 through their JustGiving page.
Celebrity Fundraiser of the Year – Richard Parks
When forced to retire from professional rugby due to an injury, Richard decided to raise funds for Marie Curie Cancer Care and began training for a challenge that would push his body and mind to the limit. Richard wanted to become the first person to reach the summits of the highest mountain in each of the seven continents and go to the three poles in just seven months, hence the ‘737 Challenge’.
Despite being struck down with frostbite and falling down a crevasse which nearly cost him his life, Richard achieved his ambition and has so far raised more than £265,000 – and the money is still rolling in.
Vodafone mobile fundraiser of the year – STV Charitable Trust
STV Appeal is a major new charity launched by STV and The Hunter Foundation. An annual venture, the STV Appeal is committed to providing support across a wide range of issues affecting Scotland, and in its first year the charity’s work focused on supporting children and young people affected by poverty. In September, the Grand Finale of the STV Appeal 2011 was hosted live from STV’s headquarters by Lorraine Kelly and linked to STV’s other studios in Edinburgh, Aberdeen and Inverness. The presenters included football guru Stuart Cosgrove and Michelle McManus. Viewers joined the team and celebrity guests including First Minister Alex Salmond for a night of entertainment, music and fundraising spirit, with a look at all the fantastic fundraising activity which took place in communities, schools and businesses across Scotland, all in support of the STV Appeal.
Workplace fundraiser of the year – Barton Willmore
To mark the company’s 75th Anniversary, staff at Barton Willmore, the UK’s leading independent, integrated Planning and Design Consultancy, created their own challenge to raise £25,000 for Maggie’s Cancer Caring Centres and the Royal Marsden Hospital. The event, named the ‘Barton Wheelmore’ saw over 80 members of staff, friends and clients take part in a cycle relay which would connect their ten UK offices. During the ten day event, the website also hosted a GPS tracker so that people could follow their progress thanks to their daily blog. Barton Willmore is over 80% of the way to their target, which they plan to hit by March 2012. The money raised for Maggie’s has allowed them to help hundreds of people affected by cancer.
Best use of Technology – Merlin
From their drivers to their doctors, Merlin’s 5,000-strong employees are motivated by the same goal: to serve some of the most vulnerable people around the world. Today, Merlin, an international health charity, reaches over 20 million people in 15 countries. Merlin created a Facebook application which brings together the JustGiving API, SDI and the Justgiving Facebook page to create a fantastic donor experience showcasing how the tools provided by JustGiving can be used to create an integrated donation solution.
Lifetime Achievement Award – Harry Moseley
Harry Moseley was an incredibly brave 11-year-old boy who, aged 7, was diagnosed with an inoperable brain tumour. Despite his illness, Harry set up the ‘Help Harry Help Others’ campaign. Harry made and sold beaded bracelets in the hope that he could raise enough money to find a cure for brain cancer. It was Harry’s goal for everyone in the UK to wear one of his bracelets. Over the course of four years and despite undergoing chemotherapy and radiotherapy, Harry singlehandedly raised over £85,000 for Cancer Research UK. He also helped raise hundreds of thousands of pounds more by supporting Cancer Research UK’s corporate pitches and events. Harry was inspired to start his fundraising because of his friend Robert Harley, 55, who had a brain tumour. At the time Harry commented: “I started making and selling bracelets in the hope that I would raise enough money for brain tumour research so that I could help get my friend better. Although he died just after I started my campaign, I am determined to continue in his memory. That’s why I’ve teamed up with Cancer Research UK to help them find a cure for brain tumours.”
Tragically, Harry passed away at home in his mother’s arms on Saturday October 8 2011.Throughout his life Harry earned the title of ‘Britain’s Kindest Kid’ and was a fantastic inspiration to others. After his death tributes came from far and wide, including former Prime Minister’s wife Sarah Brown, England footballers Jack Wilshere and Rio Ferdinand, Dragon’s Den entrepreneurs Peter Jones, Duncan Bannatyne and Deborah Meaden, snooker star Jimmy White, television presenter Ben Shepherd and teenage diving star Tom Daley, whose father died of a brain tumour last year. Harry has left a huge legacy through his campaign, and his friends and family are continuing to fundraise in his memory.