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Fundraising is vital for charities, not only to raise money for their beneficiaries, but also to get the word out about worthwhile causes and connect with people in the community. Anyone who’s stood on the high street for a couple of hours with a bucket of coins and a handful of leaflets will tell you that raising money is only part of the story; they volunteer because they want to make the world a better place, even if only in a small way.

State of the art digital technology can be used not just to increase fundraising for charities, but also help to connect charity users, donors and staff, as well as disseminate information amongst the public about the work charities do. But what would a dynamic, technologically well-integrated charity fundraising campaign look like?

Imagine a treasure hunt organised for city workers by a charity. Around the city, puzzles and riddles are tied to lampposts, left on benches, set up in parks and libraries. The participants work together in teams, walking around from one puzzle to the next, trying to find the prize: a gold trophy and the honour of being the winning company who supported the charity event. While the teams should need to work methodically to get to the end, someone might chance upon the prize accidentally, or a puzzle in the chain might get stolen or misplaced. It takes time to set up the treasure hunt, possibly with the required agreement of the City council.

But, if the charity were to use digital technology, the treasure hunt could be more effective, fun and raise more money. Instead of recruiting groups or companies to participate, the charity could put up details of the event on social media, and allow anyone interested to participate and sign up into groups through a network. GPS tracking could be used to keep track of groups, and people could use their phones or mobile devices to receive the puzzles once they are in the correct area. Virtual reality, similar to that used by the popular Pokémon Go game, could be integrated to make the hunt more engaging. The people participating could donate money via mobile to receive hints and tips if they get stuck or can’t solve a riddle, which would provide more money for the charity. Finally, an app such as Just Giving could be used to raise funds for the event to cover overheads.

Using technology in this way, there’s very little that charities can’t do. Charities are increasingly turning to digital and social media solutions to increase their influence and provide services more effectively. We have used our development skills to help charities like Doctors of the World, Hope for Depression and Pennies to do just this. If you are a charity and want to learn how technology can help you to help others, you can contact Wirebox to learn more.