One of the most successful events ever organised by Bluebell Wood Children’s Hospice has been shortlisted in the 2017 National Fundraising Awards.
A Soapbox Derby, devised and run by South Yorkshire’s only children’s hospice in October 2016, is in the running for the Best Use of Events Award at the Institute of Fundraising’s annual awards.
As the first children’s hospice to create a Soapbox Derby event, Bluebell Wood invited teams of daredevil drivers to brave bumps, jumps and chicanes along a 500 metre downhill course at Clifton Park, Rotherham, steering hand-built racing cars made from baths, bicycles and wheelchair parts and other objects.
Launched in early 2016 to one of the biggest responses Bluebell Wood has ever had, the event became one of Bluebell Wood’s most successful community events, raising £17,000. An impressive 3,500 spectators attended the event in person and nearly a quarter of a million people (247,000) engaged with the Facebook event, including 51,000 people who viewed the event online.
Bluebell Wood’s Events Organiser Jo Berry devised and delivered the event with help from volunteers. Jo said: “We needed something new and different to engage with the Rotherham community and encourage new supporters. Many of the spectators told us afterwards that the event had brought Rotherham people together and commented on the community spirit it achieved.
“It’s incredibly exciting that the event has been recognised by the prestigious Institute of Fundraising and we’re really looking forward to our next Soapbox Derby on 30 September 2017.”
It costs more than £4m to run Bluebell Wood Children’s Hospice, which provides support both at the hospice and in the community. For more details on the 2017 Soapbox Derby or for other ideas to help Bluebell Wood make more memories for the 250 children it cares for, please visit www.bluebellwood.org.