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Benefits of anniversary partnerships

John Lewis

Anniversaries offer fantastic profile-raising and fundraising opportunities for charity and corporate partnerships. Ahead of Barnardo’s 150th anniversary in 2016, we take a look at some successful anniversary alliances.

When car dealership I&K Motors teamed up with cancer charity CLAN Cancer Support for a year-long partnership, it was a double celebration. “When we discovered we shared our birthday with CLAN there was no hesitation in offering to lend our support,” says Steve Innes, managing director at I&K Motors. “It's been a celebratory year for both organisations and the enthusiasm and drive to raise funds for the charity has been there in abundance across our entire workforce and with our customers.”

Both organisations celebrate their 30th anniversary in 2014. Events they’ve organised together have marked the special milestone and helped raise the profile of each organisation. For example, I&K Motors put CLAN’s 30th anniversary logo on one of their courtesy cars and also donated a special number plate for the charity’s mini bus. "The number plate will be a lovely keepsake of what has been a fabulous year for CLAN in which so many people have come together to help mark our special birthday,” says Susan Crighton, CLAN's fundraising manager.

Expanding opportunities

More organisations are partnering with others to celebrate an anniversary, benefiting from duel fundraising and anniversary events. Last year, the Football Association joined up with the Teenage Cancer Trust as the organisation marked its 150th anniversary. Fundraising events were anniversary themed and included 20 staff cycling 150 miles from Wembley to St. George’s Park and an England v Scotland match in August 2013. The partnership raised £460,000, exceeding the £300,000 fundraising target.

As well as raising lots of money for charity, an anniversary partnership is also an opportunity to extend an organisation’s reach to new audiences. To mark its first year anniversary, in June 2014, Monarch’s charitable foundation announced three new charity partners: water aid charity Just a Drop, educational charity Level Trust and Blind Veterans UK. “We look forward to extending our commitment to local communities and causes across the UK,” said Iain Rawlinson, Executive Chairman of The Monarch Group.

Celebrating together

In May 2014, Barnardo’s started an 18-month partnership with John Lewis to celebrate the company’s 150th anniversary. Local Barnardo’s staff and children and young people supported by the charity have spoken at the company’s anniversary celebration events, including one televised in three cities and aired in John Lewis stores in September. John Lewis staff have also taken part in Store Wars  and their suppliers donated fantastic prizes for a golf day which raised around £250,000 for Barnardo’s.

“The partnership is going fantastically well and is helping to unite John Lewis staff and partners during their anniversary year,” says Helena Burley, Corporate Relationship Manager at Barnardo’s. “As a UK-wide charity, we have a presence in all of the areas where there are John Lewis stores. They believe in early years intervention as we do.”

Next year, Barnardo’s also celebrates its 150th birthday so the partnership with John Lewis will mark duel anniversaries. “Anniversary partnerships suggest organisations are doing something right and celebrating them together is a chance to reflect on past successes and plan for the future,” says Helena.

Hear from KPMG, RBS and KFC in our video about the benefits of partnering with Barnardo’s.

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