Raising £3 million in one night to plug the funding gap

The Challenge

Norwood is a charity supporting people and families with learning disabilities and special educational and social needs.  Its vital services were hit hard with the impact of the pandemic, with greater expenditure combined with a large funding gap due to cancelled fundraising activity across the period, and the closure of its charity shops. In the past, its single biggest event to raise funds was a glittering gala dinner.  But on Norwood’s 225th anniversary year, that couldn’t happen.  Norwood needed an alternative way to engage donors and meet its fundraising target.

Our Approach

We created the Norwood ‘Dinner Reimagined’ – taking the best elements of dinners past – the glamour, entertainment and charity engagement – and re packaging them to create a compelling online experience for guests.  In a zoom-weary world, this alternative still needed to feel like an occasion, capturing the hearts and minds of its audience and encouraging them to give.

We produced a 55 minute broadcast-quality, magazine-style programme, highly polished and packed with celebrities, surprises and moving appeals, with the narrative and opportunities for viewers to donate.  Streamed in an evening ‘as live’ to a pre-registered audience, presenter Jonathan Ross was joined by stars including Michael McIntyre, Rob Rinder, Strictly dancers and Lulu, amongst many others.  And filmed inserts highlighted the stories of families Norwood supports.

We raised an incredible £3 million in one night.  Also capturing a wider audience than the traditional dinner ever could.  10,000 people tuned in from around the world, watching both live and afterwards, which helped Norwood increase its donor database for future fundraising and engagement.

"This has exceeded our target, and indeed exceeded our previous dinner totals in a year that has been incredibly challenging for everyone.  A huge well done and thank you to you – without your support and expertise, we couldn’t have achieved this."


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