I think it was when I got the £2 donation that I knew I could exceed all my original fundraising targets. I was at an event and was talking about my 100km ride around London on behalf of Mind. I’d worn one of the charity’s T-shirts in the hope of starting a conversation, grabbing a few donations. I’d spoken to the lady concerned earlier in the day and explained that I was £2 away from my next milestone. The conversation had moved on and I thought no more about it. However, as she was leaving for the day, she made a point of seeking me out and pressing the pound coins in to my hand. “Now you’ve made target” she said. I thanked her but in an instant she was gone, leaving me elated and even more committed to what I was doing.
When I signed up for Nightrider there was a minimum fundraising target of £175 so I decided to set my target as £250. That would enable a local Mind association to provide mental health awareness training, except that target came and went pretty quickly. That £2 I mentioned earlier? That got me to £500 and that would pay for Mind to staff their legal helpline for a day. As the event drew nearer I was hoping for £700, to establish a carers support group for the loved ones of people with mental health problems. Nothing though, prepared me for the late surge of donations which meant that I set off with in excess of £1000 raised. That will mean Mind can train people in suicide intervention techniques.
So hey, that’s the bald figures but what it doesn’t tell is how so many of the donors have shared a story with me. Told me about a friend, a relative or maybe a colleague who they know has struggled with their mental health. Some of my donors even bravely talked about their own battles. It’s clear to me that the issue of mental health is very real to most people. Now whilst I appreciate that much of my internet presence is in the coaching / HR field I think more and more people are beginning to join the debate about what constitutes good mental health. That can only be a good thing.
So it’s a big thank you to all my donors. For me it was never about the size of the donation (though you stunned and amazed me at every turn) it was about awareness, about getting a dialogue going. We certainly did that. (I was even interviewed by a cycling magazine thanks to twitter).
Thanks for committing and donating with your hearts – you have helped the minds of others……..
…….and if you want to know how it was for me? Here is the film. Please watch it, enjoy it and share it because I’m still open for business 🙂