Merry Friday to all and to all a good weekend! I’m feeling rather jolly today as you can probably tell, but it may just be all the coffee…

I’ve been on the phones a lot this week chatting to you lovely lot! Mostly about your payments, if you do have any concerns about fundraising or if you aren’t sure if you have a payment outstanding give us a ring and ask! We won’t bite, we promise! Plus we love chatting away!!!

Enough of my rambling, meet our Fundraising Friday star, Joel! He made a HUGE amount of effort for his first ever fundraising event and found out for himself that if you work super hard, it will pay off! Over to Joel…

I suppose what drew me to the expedition at first was how involved you really get with the community and the people there. The projects that we’re going to be participating in sound really hands on and I think that’s really good, because hopefully we’ll really make a difference to people’s quality of life.

Also, it just seems like such an amazing experience. Aside from the community aspect and the helping out, it jumped out at me as a once in a lifetime opportunity. It’s something that I hope will have an effect on me as a person. I think it will teach me to be a bit more grateful for the things I take for granted at home when I see the conditions that people less fortunate than myself live in.

I also I think it will make me a bit more independent, so for example I organised the majority of my fundraising event myself, which is something I’ve never really had the opportunity to do before. I enjoyed having the final say on things and I think my leadership skills have benefitted from the experience so far.

I am going to Borneo in 2016 and this was my first fundraising activity. I do a lot of music at my school in Grantham and I’m a singer in the school’s soul band, so I decided I would put on a concert. I really enjoy singing so it was a fun project for me to do.

I assembled a band with 4 horns (Alto and tenor saxophone, trumpet and trombone); Bass and Electric Guitar; Piano; drums and two other vocalists to sing too. The music was mainly soul and jazz, so we played some Stevie Wonder, James Brown, Frank Sinatra, but also some more up to date songs from Bruno Mars, Beyonce and Paolo Nutini.

   

Tickets were £10 each and about 160 people came. In addition to that, I asked a few local businesses and businesses I have contacts with, to sponsor the entire fundraising project. In return for a lot of coverage of the night, as their logos were on the setlist programmes and I mentioned them a couple of times on stage. Sponsorship money came to about £1400 in total, from 4 businesses. We also had a bar and I delegated the auction prizes to my mum, who got about 18 brilliant prizes in the end!

It was a mammoth challenge in the end! Finding a suitable venue was tricky, but we got a village hall in a tiny village called Hose, which worked well. Another challenge was getting enough rehearsals in with all 11 members of the band, but we did just enough. We managed to do our first rehearsal on the 4th of January 2015 and the night was the 25th of April. We also hired in lights and decorations (which were tricky to set up to say the least), as well as a full digital PA desk for the band to sound as good as possible.

The whole nights profit, including bar, auction, ticket sales, donations and sponsors came to £2570. Which is over half of my total fundraising target, which I was pretty chuffed with. I named the band after one of the places I’ll be visiting in Borneo: The Mantanani Soul Band.

I can’t wait to go, (and although I’m not looking forward to the insects..) it should be an incredible experience to go and make a difference to the people there and to myself! I think I’m most looking forward to living in the jungle for 5 days, sleeping under the stars, hopefully seeing some wildlife, but I would also really like to meet loads of people that we’re doing stuff for I.e children who we’re building playgrounds for:)

I love love LOVE this story!!! Not only does Joel show that hard work really does pay off, but he shows fundraising is not easy! It is hard work and you do need to put effort into it. He also talks about the benefits of fundraising, hence why I love it SO MUCH!

Want to share your story?!?! Send it over! What we look for when picking a Fundraising Friday Star is what you felt when you first heard about the expedition, a few paragraphs about what you have been up to so far for your fundraising, any future fundraising plans and some pictures of your fundraising! LOTS of pictures! (pleeeeeease) But the pictures do need to be of a high quality that can be uploaded online‰! no fuzzy mugshots! 😉

Please email all entries to fundraising@campsinternational.com, we can‰Ûªt wait to hear from you all! 😀 Remember, every Fundraising Friday Star will win a FREE HEAD TORCH! 

If you win, you will automatically be put into a draw to win an even bigger prize… every quarter we will choose one Fundraising Friday Star to win A FREE RUCKSACK, SLEEPING BAG LINER, TRAVEL TOWEL AND WATER BOTTLE!!! Which means less kit you’ll have to buy.