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British Red Cross donated goods appeal raises record £6.5m

British Red Cross donated goods appeal raises record £6.5m

The British Red Cross Clean Start Appeal, in which the UK government match funded income from the sale of goods donated to the charity’s shops, has raised more than £6.5 million in three months. This is the most money raised by the charity for a non-emergency appeal.


The match funding campaign ran from 4 January to 3 April 2015. Dfid’s UK Aid Match promised to match goods donated or cash donations during this period up to a maximum of £5 million.

The money raised will help deliver safer water, sanitation and hygiene to 380,000 people in Kenya and Bangladesh, where 37 million people currently live without access to clean water. Once those projects have been funded by government funding and the shops’ income, remaining public donations will be used for Red Cross work helping people in crisis overseas where the need is greatest.

An average bag of donated stock is worth £25 and when sold for the Clean Start Appeal, attracting the matched funding, became £50 which could pay for a latrine set for two families in Bangladesh.

Help from SpongeBob

The Red Cross partnered with The SpongeBob Movie: Sponge Out of Water, with an appeal advertisement running in 408 cinemas across the UK. SpongeBob also starred in a digital poster which was seen in 91 cinemas across the UK. The space was donated for free by DCM and Primesight, and Paramount Pictures produced the advertisement alongside the Red Cross in-house creative team.


Mark Astarita, British Red Cross Director of Fundraising, said:

“We are delighted that we have raised more than £6.5 million and would like to thank our generous supporters and our loyal shop customers… We are pleased that so many people supported the appeal and over the coming months will update our supporters on the life-saving projects that they helped to fund.”

International Development Secretary Justine Greening added:

“The public response to the British Red Cross ‘Clean Start’ Appeal has been fantastic. With the UK Government matching pound for pound both cash and goods donations, we have helped public generosity go twice as far”.

Howard Lake is a digital fundraising entrepreneur. Publisher of UK Fundraising, the world's first web resource for professional fundraisers, since 1994. Trainer and consultant in digital fundraising. Founder of Fundraising Camp.

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