In this guest blog, Aled and Enlli give us their pro tips for organising a street collection. Both of these amazing people are fundraising for MS-UK as they take on the Virgin Money London Marathon this year - thank you guys! So, read on for their top tips...
What is a street collection?
A street collection is a charity collection on a high street or shopping area. Collections are usually made using buckets. Learn how to stage your own street collection with this handy guide from seasoned pros Aled and Enlli!
Step one - Plan your application
In order to be able to organise a street collection you must first make an application to your local council.
You should look to make an application a month before the date you are hoping to do the collection.
Popular areas and dates (such as Christmas) may require an application to be completed further in advance.
Step two - Complete your application
The application form should be available on the council's website.
The application form for most councils will be in PDF or word document format which you will need to save before filling in. Make sure you have the most recent version of Adobe. The forms are usually straightforward, requiring information about yourself and the charity.
Most councils also require a letter of authenticity (LOA) to be submitted alongside the application. This proves to the council that you are raising money for charity. You can get a LOA from your charity of choice. If you are planning a street collection for MS-UK, you can get in touch with the MS-UK Fundraising Team using our online form.
Step three - Prepare yourself for the day ahead
Be early - You may not be the only street collector on the day. By arriving early you can make sure you can stand in the prime location and catch the early shoppers who can also be the most generous.
Grab a great spot - It is very important to make sure you stand in a good location. Ideally you want to be placed in a busy place near popular shops.
Take a break - Street collecting can be very tiring both physically and mentally. Take breaks and make sure you drink enough water.
Step four - Get creative!
Try fancy dress - Dressing up really helps. It can often draw people's attention and often brings a smile to young children. I (Aled) often wear my giraffe onesie or something festive. Before Christmas we organised a street collection in St Albans and we certainly drew attention to ourselves dressed up as elves!
Be active - There is nothing worse than a disinterested collector! We never standing still when collecting. It keeps us warm and people always seem more likely to donate to those who look like they want to be there.
Grab some stickers! - Having stickers with you can be very useful. Children really enjoy getting something in return. At our Christmas collection we gave out festive stickers to children and their parents often reached for a few extra pennies!
Handy extra information!
People may ask what your charity does. If you're raising money for MS-UK, make sure you are aware of the amazing work they do!
Tell your chosen charity before you start collecting. You should always email the charity before making an application for a street collection as a charity can only make one application in an area per year.
Set up a Facebook page. If you are successful with an application, post about it on the Facebook page so others who live nearby can join in.
Don't shake the bucket! You are not allowed to shake your bucket when conducting a street collection.
Organising a street collection in central London tends to be very difficult. They need to be organised a long time in advance and usually by the charity itself.
If you would like to collect outside a supermarket or shopping centre you may require extra permission from the manager in additional to the council license.
From Aled and Enlli
Fancy hosting a street collection for MS-UK? Get in touch with our fundraising team today!