As 15th March fast approaches, garden centres from across the country are busy making preparations for one of their biggest fundraising days of the year – Garden Re-Leaf Day - together raising vital funds for the children’s hospice garden charity, Greenfingers. This year, the charity has set the “250 challenge” which they hope could help retailers to become the biggest combined contributors to this special event.
What is the 250 Challenge?
Whilst many garden centres go above and beyond, each year raising thousands of pounds across the Garden Re-Leaf weekend, the charity recognises that not all centres have the time or capacity to support at this level. With the 250 challenge, garden centres can still get involved but on a smaller scale. Here’s everything you need to know.
The aim of the 250 challenge is to raise a minimum of £250. If every garden centre in the UK raised this sum on Garden Re-Leaf Day this would total in excess of £1.5million, proving the old adage that ‘every little helps!’
With the 250 challenge, garden centres have the option to raise funds across one day (ideally 15th March to align with Garden Re-Leaf Day) or they can utilise the whole month, week or weekend to reach their fundraising target.
Ways to raise funds
There are a million different ways to raise funds. Some can be done slowly, and others require a little bit more fanfare! Here are some ways to put the fun into FUNdraising.
Plantathons are perfect for generating some buzz in-store whilst simultaneously generating more stock and donating to Greenfingers. Previous events have included 12- and 24-hour Plantathons. To undertake a Plantathon you need lots of pots, growing media and plant stock. Simply plant up as many as you can during your chosen duration and sell them off to boost your fundraising total.
Hold a quiz, with a minimum donation for all entrants. Guaranteed fun and some friendly competition.
Why not set yourself a 25-minute challenge? Get the whole team involved to all undertake a 25-minute sponsored challenge. It’s a small investment of time that not only fosters a great sense of team achievement but also, once again, adds up to a superb, combined effort. Get your customers to sponsor you – whether it’s standing on one leg, or running on a treadmill, this is your chance to create a real buzz in-store.
Raffles and tombolas are a great way of getting lots of people involved. Gather prizes from around your store, or ask friends and colleagues to donate prizes, before selling raffle tickets ahead of the grand unveiling of the lucky winner!
Cake sales and coffee mornings – are simple yet effective FUNdraisers, whilst drawing more people into your café area.
Team up with colleagues to complete a walk or cycle challenge. Set yourselves a target – 100 miles for example – and work together to achieve it. Walk around your local area, on a treadmill, or add an exercise bike to the store for an afternoon of cycling excellence, with customers invited to donate by throwing loose change into a bucket or via a QR code.
In-store talks and workshops – do you know a local gardening group, or expert rose grower that could come into your store to run a special talk or workshop? Or perhaps one of your team is amazing at creating Easter wreaths and would run a special session with customers. This is a great way to raise money whilst also engaging with your customers and showcasing your in-house skills.
Countertop fundraising – with a bucket, a bit of signage and teams briefed, it is easy to get customers to throw their spare coins at the end of every transaction. Plus, with the inclusion of a dedicated QR code those more generous customers can donate larger sums of money via their phones.
Plant sales – consider a special Greenfingers plant display where a percentage or set fee from each sale is donated to the charity. This is a great way of creating a talking point in the store, whilst promoting the charity. It can also help drive impulse sales and push those hard-to-sell or seasonal plants.
Last but not least - maximise social media. Whatever you do to support Garden Re-Leaf Day don’t forget to shout if from the rooftops via your social media channels. In doing so, you can encourage more customers into your store to support your fundraising efforts.
Don’t miss out – register today!
Getting involved in the 2024 Garden Re-Leaf ‘250 Challenge’ please visit https://www.greenfingerscharity.org.uk/garden-re-leaf-day-own-event or reach out to Linda Petrons, Greenfingers Director of Fundraising & Communications via email@example.com for more information and to grab your fundraising pack.
The charity also offers a wealth of additional collateral that can help garden retailers to make the most of the Garden Re-Leaf weekend, including t-shirts, collection buckets and posters to name but a few. Garden Re-Leaf is also a great local PR opportunity which helps to drive customers into your store, and, again, Greenfingers can offer support to maximise this with draft news releases, and advice on which media to contact.