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Majority of Marathon-ers do it for Charity

13 September 2011

And Marathon runners who set targets raised 58% more than those who didn't

Over 80% of runners who took part in the Virgin London Marathon raised money for charity, new analysis from not-for-profit online giving site shows.

Analysis of fundraising at the 2011 event revealed that 86% of those who took part in the race raised money for charity. These ranged from club runners and marathon veterans, to first-timers.

And those who set charity targets raised on average 58% more than those who didn’t publish a fundraising target, the research shows.

Analysis of fundraising at the 2011 event indicates the average amount raised for good causes by those who set a fundraising target was £1,328 excluding Gift Aid, compared with £842 excluding Gift Aid by those who did not.

Using Gift Aid also helped. On Gift Aid was reclaimed on 88% of all donations, and meant that the average fundraiser accrued £1,436 including Gift Aid.

The figures are contained in a report produced for charities by Virgin Money Giving in conjunction with the Virgin London Marathon, aimed at helping to maximise donations for the 2012 event.

Fundraising figures for the 2011 Marathon show that Virgin is well on course to hit its target of helping to raise £250 million for good causes through the London Marathon by 2015. Runners in the 2011 race raised £51.8 million for charity.

Fundraisers who used contributed £13.8 million to charity compared with £8.3 million in its first year of operation. 10,231 people used the service in 2011 compared with 6,246 in 2010.

Jo Barnett, executive director at Virgin Money Giving said: “Training for, and running a marathon is no easy feat and our research shows that the main driver for people taking part in the London Marathon is to raise funds for charity. It is great that so many runners see their involvement in the event as a way of encouraging people to donate to charity.

“Setting a target clearly pays off, even if fundraisers do not hit the target, as the 58% difference in average amounts raised demonstrates.

“Charities need all the money they can raise and it is great to see that the vast majority of runners, whatever their aim for the race, are committed to raising money for charity.

The report shows 2011Marathonrunners who set up their fundraising pages when their place was first confirmed in 2010 raised an average of £1,511, including Gift Aid compared with £1,374 for those who waited and started in 2011.

A total of 364,500 donations for theMarathonwere received through for the 2011 race – 70% higher than the 214,405 in 2010.

Through Virgin Money Giving, for every £10 donated, £12.15 will make its way to the good cause, assuming donors are eligible to sign up to give Gift Aid. Since its launch in October 2009 has raised close to £75 million.

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About Virgin Money Giving

  • Virgin Money Giving is the not-for-profit online fundraising arm of Virgin Money and was established in 2009. Virgin Money uses its infrastructure and expertise as a financial services business to ensure that Virgin Money Giving is efficient, secure and offers a high quality service to all fundraisers, charities and those wanting to donate to charity online.
  • , which is backed by hundreds of major charities, officially opened to all fundraisers for all charity events on 14 October 2009 and estimates it will deliver an extra £5 million on top of every £100 million raised for charities. This is part of its commitment to achieve the best deal for charities .
  • is free for fundraisers, charges a flat registration fee of £100 + VAT for charities and a 2% fee on all donations before Gift Aid, which means for every £10 raised charities receive £12.15.
  • Virgin Money Giving charges charities the minimum fees needed to cover the running costs of the site. Any money left over after covering operating costs will go towards reducing fees further or improving services for fundraisers and charities.
  • Fundraisers can personalise their fundraising pages, send out email alerts and manage their fundraising events. They can include their own content, photos and links to their page as well as customise messages for their supporters. Fundraisers can also link their page to social networking sites.
  • Virgin Money Giving also contains fundraising ideas and tips, offering help and advice to fundraisers on how to raise more for charity.
  • is the official sponsorship website of the Virgin London Marathon, Royal Parks Half Marathon, Virgin Active London Triathalon and Nike Run to the Beat.