Today Michelle and I were signing off our fundraising strategy, but we’ve hit a huge snag. We’ve just discovered it could take up to 9 weeks to get a code from HMRC – and that means we can’t activate our Justgiving account. We didn’t want to make the website active before we had a means for our supporters to donate, particularly because we’re developing a beautiful ‘Buy A Brick’ application, which will allow everyone to buy virtual brick to help build our home.
So should we launch Child’s i Foundation to the world without an online donation mechanism?
Just as we were puzzling it out, my phone rang. It was Deborah Meaden. What followed was an amazing 20-minute conversation, which I find hard to believe actually happened. She told me she had read my proposal, and was incredibly impressed with what I had accomplished and what an impressive team I had put together. I had turned the idea I pitched to her in the lift (apparently ‘very well’) into a reality. Her only remaining question was whether anyone else was already doing this kind of thing out in Uganda, but as our priority is resettling our children into families, we have a USP.
I then took the opportunity to pick her brains over the current quandary – should we launch without the donation mechanism in place? She replied with advice she had never given before – Yes, launch. Commercially, she would never suggest us to go ahead but as our aim is to create a worldwide community of supporters, she felt we should focus on building up the community, then launch ‘Buy A Brick’ at a later stage, when we’d generated lots of support and interest.
As for her involvement in our project, she is already working with Action Against Hunger. She is a lady of her word and when she says she is going to commit to something she puts in 100%, so she can’t commit to our project as well. I really respect her and wish her lots of luck on her trip out to visit one of AAH’s projects in the New Year. She did say she is always at the end of the phone if I needed advice, which is extremely comforting to know. Thank you, Deborah. You made my week.