Cancer Research UK is the country’s largest charity with the objective of fighting cancer. The organization supports researchers, as they develop new treatments for cancer. The organization has identified over two hundred types of cancer, and it works with different health personnel to provide kinder treatments for the patients. The organization’s efforts have helped to improve the lives of the cancer patients and increase their survival rates. It is involved in funding over half of the cancer research done in the UK. In addition, it has embarked on an education and awareness campaign aimed at informing people about cancer. It has held different campaigns over the years, such as campaigns aimed at reducing the use of tobacco. The organization has made progress on different fronts, including developing cancer drugs for different cancers, pioneering the use of radiotherapy as a form of cancer treatment, and pushing for legislation against smoking in England. The organization is a fundraising charity, and it depends on the support it receives from supporters and volunteers (Cancer Research UK-a). The charity holds different events throughout the year as a way of seeking funds, and it has made extensive use of the internet, especially social media, for marketing and awareness purposes.
The charity organizes different events for different purposes. Some of the events include Race for Life, Relay for Life, and different sports challenges. Events are an effective way of raising awareness about an issue. It enables many people to know more about the charity’s mission and vision, and if this stimulates the people’s interests, then they join as participants or they donate money towards realizing the goals and objective of the organization. Events create many opportunities for people to volunteer their services (Weinstein 2009). There are faster ways of raising money other than using events, but events help in raising the charity’s profile, and bringing in more people. Events are successful when they create greater visibility and publicity for the organization (Klein, 2011).
The time required to plan an event depends on the scale of that event, and on its complexity. Some activities can take a few weeks to plan, whereas others take years of planning and coordinating different activities. Charities have to ensure that they are able to interest people to contribute towards the event, because of increasing competition among the different charities. The most effective charities tend to be the ones with creative themes, endorsements of celebrities, or where there is a new twist that makes the event relevant to the community (Sargeant and Jay, 2009). Some events may take some time to succeed, as people take time knowing about them. Once many people know about the events and identify with the cause, they events become a success in terms of the number of people they manage to attract and the funds they are able to raise. Many charities that are concerned with health issues often prefer sports events. These types of events are often cheaper to organize compared to other events (Ilona, 2010).
The Race for Life event is a women’s only event held in the UK. Since its inception in 1994, the event has raised close to £500 million from six million participants. The Relay for Life is a community led initiative, which seeks to honor cancer survivors and celebrate life. This event is different in the way it raises funds. Different teams raise money throughout the year from their local communities, and they come together in an overnight celebration. There are different activities for the families to participate. Individual teams find ways of raising money for their teams, and team members and captains have to pay an entry fee. The charity organizes different sports challenges, which include running, cycling, and swimming (Cancer Research UK-b). The charity has a National Events Committee, which has helped organize different high profile events that have included the participation of royalty, politicians, and other dignitaries.
One of the events of the committee is Turn the Tables Lunch, which involves the participation of politicians. It has helped to raise more than £550, 000 for the charity, since its inception in the year 2000. the committee has also helped to organize other events such as the carol concert at St Paul’s Cathedral and has managed to attract her royal highness princess Alexandra, celebrity actors, and famous opera singers. The charity has taken measures to involve the entire community. Through the event of Young Art, the charity gives children and young people the chance to exhibit their artwork at the Royal College of Art, which is a prestigious venue, holding art collections by distinguished artists. The charity has made efforts to contact foreigners and expatriates living in the UK to contribute by holding special events such as the Fright & Delight and Foreign Sisters UK (National Events Committee 2011)
Non-profit organizations benefit from using the internet. The internet has become necessary for every organisation as it has become a communication tool, in addition to serving other purposes which include running daily operations of the business and managing marketing and fundraising activities (Hart et al. 2010). The charity has realised the potential of social media, and it has used this to its full advantage. It has presence on different social networking sites and other media such as Facebook, twitter, Youtube, and Delicious, in addition to having a blog and a website. During the charity’s recent campaign, which it dubbed ‘dryathlon’, the organization created Facebook and twitter accounts in addition to having a microsite dedicated to the campaign. These initiatives were intended to help those who participated in the campaign to support each other. They were a way for the organization to communicate with the participants, as it gave the participants tips on how to get funds for their campaign (Baker 2012).
Organizations have to integrate different online techniques if they hope to succeed in their fundraising efforts when using the internet (Tempel 2010). The use of social media and blogs helps in driving traffic back to the organization’s website. This is important because an effective and relevant website contains all information that relate to the company. It has more details concerning the company compared to other social media channels, which cannot hold all the information. Charities can engage the people using different social media channels in different ways. It is important for charities to do this, since it makes the people feel that they are a part of the organisations, and that they can contribute to the success of the charity. By asking questions in the social media channels, the charities compel the people to respond to these questions and to hold discussions. This enables the organization to know what the people want, their ideas concerning different projects, and their suggestions on how the charity can improve. Such discussions are an effective way of finding some great fundraising ideas (Davis 2012).
Through the internet, charities are able to contact and reach more donors than they would have using traditional methods. Social media acts more like word of mouth, whereby information travels from one person to another, without the need of engaging traditional media as advertising agents. They enable the charities to form friendships first, by establishing a fan base or followers, before asking the contacts for any help (Heyman 2011). When charities strive to develop intimate and meaningful contacts with the people, then the people feel that they are dealing with someone they know and they will be eager to participate in the charity’s fundraising efforts more actively. They will be willing to let their contacts on their personal sites know about the organization’s efforts, and this will be essential in publicizing the organization’s efforts and increasing awareness. People interested in knowing anything about the organization can visit the website. The charity uses the social media to raise and increase awareness on different issues, inform, communicate, and educate.
People can contact the organization through Facebook. Once a person becomes a fan of the organization on its Facebook page, he or she can get more information regarding the organization, such as the latest news and stories. Fans connected to the organization can share their opinions on different issues, their experiences, photos and videos. The charity has presence on twitter. It gives up dates on its activities through its twitter-feed and this enables those who follow it on twitter to know what is going on in the organization. The organization informs its followers concerning the latest news and development in cancer research and any other health issues. It also lets the customers know any information regarding fundraising activities. Through the organization’s Youtube channel, viewers see videos of past events, and of events that are happening currently. Viewers also get to see the different campaigns that the charity initiates and participates in, and the people involved in those campaigns. The Youtube channel consists of other videos involving scientific research.
The charity has developed CancerChat, which is a discussion forum where those suffering from cancer can share their experiences and discuss different issues. It has a blog, where it includes a lot of information, especially information concerning cancer research. The blog has links to different resources, where people can get more information. The company uses the blog to clarify different issues concerning health and cancer. Sponsors and other charity supporters learn more about their donations through the blog (Cancer Research UK-c). The organization has a Google+ account. It posts different articles on the account, in addition to photos and videos. The account contains the organization’s information, such as contact information, website links, and links to the organisation’s blog
Charities need grants as means of additional funding to enable them to conduct their work and support different activities. Different funding organisations have different reasons for choosing to fund specific grants. Some of them aim to enhance research in a certain area, while others seek to find answers to problems facing humanity. Some organisations may choose to fund some projects and research, as a way of seeking partnership with an identified research institution. In this case, the research institution has the same goals and objectives, or it is interested in the same type of research as the funding organisation. It is important for the charity to understand the agenda of the funding organization, as this will determine if there is a possibility of getting the grant (Aldridge and Derrington, 2012). Wellcome Trust is one funding organization.
The trust focuses on different areas which include supporting outstanding research, accelerating the research application process, and exploring medicine in historical or cultural context. Cancer Research UK could approach the organization, since it deals with its areas of concern. Researching on cancer cure is one example of outstanding research. Cancer affects many people and despite the progress in medicine and research, researchers have not been able to find a cure. Through the fellowship schemes, the organization supports researchers who intend to create innovative solutions to problems and explore challenging questions. Cancer Research UK believes that despite the seemingly overwhelming challenges ahead, it is possible to find cancer cures. It has demonstrated its commitment towards its vision by supporting different researches which have led to great accomplishments in the area of cancer treatment.
Cancer Research UK is qualified for the grant because it is based in the UK and its activities take place in the UK, and it is an organization, and the trust awards grants through organisations. However, if this is the first time that the charity is seeking funding through the trust, the trust has to carry out an eligibility test. In this case, the charity has to provide articles of association, audited accounts for the last two years, information regarding any funding received through grants, and confirmation that the charity has not received, or is not intending to receive any funding from a tobacco company (Wellcome Trust-b).
Wellcome Trust funds biomedical science, and this includes funding for research in areas such as the spread of diseases and public health research aimed at improving healthcare. It funds the best researchers who have demonstrated the openness of trying out innovative and exciting ideas. It has established four funding schemes, which include investigator awards, strategic awards and other initiatives, PhD funding and undergraduate opportunities, and fellowship schemes. Cancer Research UK can apply for grants under the investigator award funding scheme. The organization awards this grant to researchers with the best ideas, and it gives the researchers enough support to address the health and disease questions they are researching. The Fellowship scheme provides support to scientists at all levels who are researching different projects that are relevant to biomedical sciences.
Writing successful bids has become increasingly important, as competition has increased. This has required individuals and organisations to write the bids that are of a high quality, and in a manner that will please the funding agents (Berry, 2010). The person seeking the funds has to show a need that is genuine and how the money received will go towards helping to fulfil that need. The organization should show why it is the preferred choice of receiving the funds. The funding agents need to see that the person seeking the bid has a practical purpose, in the manner of demonstrating how he or she will fulfil the objectives set. Having realistic goals is important, and it is a way of demonstrating competence and expertise. The charity needs to have a clear purpose of needing the money, and how receiving the money will enable it to satisfy its need. Charities, however well known and big they are, should not make the assumptions that the funding organizations know about them, or that the organizations are aware of their work. The charities should explain who they are and what they do.
It is important for the charity to have a clear understanding of the funding organisation. The charity should do a background check to ensure that it is aware of the guidelines and requirements of the funding organisation, including such issues as eligibility criteria and the application process. If possible, the charity should seek to know the funding organisation, before sending the bid (Third Sector, 2012). Creating a relationship with the potential funding organisation is important and beneficial for the charity, and it can come in handy in future, even if the first attempt to seek funding fails. The charity should seek to know what the funding organisation wants, and the things they prioritise. The charity can ask for more information about succeeding at the bidding process from the organisation (Jacques, 2011). In all grant proposals, it is important for the people seeking the grant to ensure that they have presented the grant in an effective manner and that the grant is presentable and appealing, with minimal use of jargon (Walters, 2009)
The charity seeking the grant has to include its budget in the proposal. The budget should be realistic, and it should reflect the needs, goals, and objectives of the charity. The funding organization ensures that all the charity will use all the money in the budget for the intended purpose. Charities should ensure that they do not ask for more money than they need (Orlich, 2005). The charities have to demonstrate competence, since the funding organization seeks to establish whether they have the necessary skills required to handle the funds. Some charities are tempted towards reducing their budget estimates and they write very low amounts. While this may seem reasonable, it may work against the charities. If the charity succeeds in its grant proposal, it will end up getting insufficient funds. However, the people reviewing the grants are experienced in many fields of research, and they can estimate the budgets for specific projects. This enables them to know when charities are undervaluing their projects (Driver, 2010). The trust sets up a decision-making committee, which include experienced and knowledgeable scientists, who have gained a lot of experience in research (Wellcome Trust-a). Therefore, the committee is able to discern the seriousness of the proposal and the competence and level of commitment of the person seeking the funds.
Wellcome Trust has set some terms and conditions, which the charity or other group receiving the grant has to meet. The trust receives many grant applications and it assesses all the applications competitively (Wellcome Trust-a). The charity has to ensure that it meets the criteria for its proposal to succeed. The committee making the decision on the award can decide on several options. It can decide to award in full, in which case it awards the applicant the funds asked for, without any deductions. The committee can award the grant at a reduced level. It can give a conditional award, in which case the charity has to meet a condition set by the committee. The committee may decide to withhold a decision as it seeks further information (Wellcome Trust-a).
The charity issued with the grant has to ensure that it uses the money for the intended purpose. It has to repay any money that it has not used for the intended purpose, indicated in the award letter. The charity should have sufficient resources to ensure the completion of activities detailed in the award letter. The charity receiving the grant should ensure that it activates the grant within one year. The organization works with the budget information it has received from the charity seeking the funds. It releases funds based on the expenditure of the information received. The charity has to send in reports containing information on how it has spent the money. Failure to do this can result to the organisation suspending payments to the charity. The organisation can also suspend payments, if it is concerned about the charity’s spending. In case the charity completes its work without utilising the entire grant offered, the charity should ensure that it repays all the money that is not spent (Wellcome Trust, 2012).
The organisation does not make further payments to fund other activities that the charity might have identified. The organisation’s support towards the charity’s activities does not end once it stops paying the grant. The organisation requires the charity to submit reports showing the progress of the activities. In addition, the charity has to submit a report within three months after receiving the last payment. Other than issuing the payments, the organization has no further financial obligations to the charity. It is not responsible for any expenses or liabilities, which the charity incurs in the process of completing its activities. The organization acts in discretion, and it has the authority and legal right to terminate issued grants on notice (Wellcome Trust, 2012). The trust supports open access, and it requires all the scientists funded to have their research available online for free. Scientists who fail to do this risk losing the last grant payment (Alok, 2012)
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