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Virgin vergin’ on £1BILLION for charity


THE BIGGEST not-for-profit charity fundraising platform that supports British charities is heading towards £1BILLION in donations just 10 years after it was launched.

Virgin Money Giving has already helped raise more than £800million for good causes since 2009. That huge growth in fundraising means it is well on track to hit the significant milestone.

As the online platform celebrated its 10th birthday, Sir Richard Branson, Virgin Founder said: "I want to wish Virgin Money Giving a Happy 10th Birthday. I’ve always believed business should be a force for good, and Virgin Money Giving is a great example of that. It was born out of Virgin Money’s sponsorship of the Virgin Money London marathon, but has gone on to help people take on all kinds of challenges in the last decade. Seeing it help over one million people raise an incredible £800m for a wide variety of good causes, is incredible. Here’s to another ten years of helping fundraisers make the most of their charity challenge and continuing to be the not-for-profit charity fundraising platform of choice."

In the 10 years since it started, Virgin Money Giving has helped 1.3million fundraisers and 12,500 charities to receive much needed cash.

According to research carried out by Virgin Money Giving, Brits value cancer sufferers, animals and children the most with the top five charities to donate to being: Cancer Charities (45%); Animal Welfare Charities (33%); Hospital and Hospices (30%); Children’s Charities (30%); and Mental Health Charities (15%).

On the other hand, Brits aren’t reaching into their pockets for the needy overseas, the environment and, shockingly education . The least donations go towards Education Charities (4%), Disaster & Relief Charities (9%), Homeless Charities (12%), Elderly Charities (13%) and Environment & Conservation Charities (13%).

Brits do seem to be getting more generous with over half (52%) now saying they would consider a charity donation instead of a present whilst only a third would have said the same 10 years back.

And as a nation we are doing bigger, bolder and crazier things to help raise money for causes that matter to us. Just some of the amazing people who have helped to raise money have broken world records , ran marathons in huge ball gowns, wounded ex-service personnel have walked to the South Pole, pensioners have jumped out of aeroplanes and people have even climbed Kilimanjaro for their chosen good cause.

One such fundraiser was former England cricket captain Sir Andrew Strauss, who created The Ruth Strauss Foundation and laid on an international cricket match at Lords to honour his late wife who died back in December 2018 after a battle with a rare form of lung cancer. The aim of the charity is to fund much needed research into the illness as well as support the patients and families going through something similar. Almost a year on, Sir Andrew continues to state the importance of charitable donations and how vital they are in people’s time of need.

Sir Andrew Strauss, CEO of Ruth Strauss Foundation, said: "Happy 10th Birthday to Virgin Money Giving. The Ruth Strauss Foundation has had a great first year with our stand-out event turning Lord’s #RedForRuth on day two of the 2nd Ashes Test and Virgin Money Giving service helped our fundraising. Virgin Money’s sponsorship of the London Marathon has helped people raise money for incredible causes over the years. Looking forward to 2020, we would like to join that long list by inviting people to run the marathon for the Ruth Strauss Foundation. This will help us continue to fund research into rare forms of lung cancer and provide emotional support for cancer patients and their families."


To celebrate its birthday, VMG has highlighted 5 money-raising heroes. They include:

  1. 74-year-old Roy Lindsell, ran The Great North Run back in September to raise funds for Alzheimer’s Research UK after his wife was diagnosed with the disease. After several setbacks including undergoing chemotherapy and a broken ankle, Roy was able to raise over £3,000.
  2. British-American author Patrick Ness led the way in an online storm that saw £1 million raised for Syrian Refugees with authors John Green and Jojo Moyes becoming involved in the movement too.
  3. Back in 2015, runner Ben Smith managed to complete 401 marathons in 401 days for two anti-bullying charities after he suffered himself from bullying for 8 years and led to him almost taking his own life. He was able to reach over £250,000 and highlight a serious issue.
  4. Ibi Ali is a former Captain from the Army who lost his right arm below the elbow which was caused by a roadside bomb in Iraq in 2007. Ibi was part of Walking With The Wounded's South Pole Expedition team in 2013 and since then has gone on to raise awareness and funds for the charity.
  5. Ever since her son Stephen’s death in 2014, Jane has gone on to raise funds for The Teenage Cancer Trust in his honour and to keep the story of his positivity and determination alive. With his voice in her ear, she has been able to raise funds with a record-breaking skydive, a London Marathon and a climb up Mount Kilimanjaro.

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