Last week, Friday 13th November was Children in Need Day. The children’s fundraiser takes place every year in the middle of November, and amidst a pandemic, 2020 was no different! This year, the appeal raised a whopping £ £37,032,789 (accurate at the time of the announcement on Friday 13th), thanks to a national effort of hundreds of thousands of donations. Due to Covid-19, physical and social isolation and the worry and uncertainty that endless lockdowns bring are exacerbating already existing issues. So, a conscientious effort and an abundance of support is needed now more than ever.
So, what is Children in Need?
Introduced as a BBC charity in 1980, Children in Need raises money for disadvantaged children and young people in the UK. We may not fully acknowledge it, but poverty in youngsters is increasing in our own country, so this fundraiser serves as a fantastic opportunity to raise awareness about the harsh realities that families face daily. The mascot which fronts the appeal is known as Pudsey Bear. He is very well-known as a friendly, enthusiastic bear to millions of children, and was created and named in 1985 by BBC graphic designer Joanna Lane, who worked in the BBC’s design department. Pudsey wears a bandana over his eye, which is purposeful in presenting him as relatable to the disadvantaged children and ‘in need’ himself almost.
How do they raise their money?
Many British businesses have collaborated with the charity and sold memorabilia with the profits going to the final total. Most notably, Asda and Sainsbury’s sell an exclusive range of BBC Children in Need products in their stores, including the iconic Pudsey ears, the cuddly bear, nightwear and much more. Other sponsorships include Greggs, Boots, WHSmith, Cineworld and many more independent establishments. Another aspect that really pushes forward donations for the appeal is an annual BBC Children in Need Appeal Show live on BBC One, which features many celebrity performances, singers, TV specials and comedians. Schools are also a vital part in coming together to support the appeal and change young lives for the better.
What are IGS doing this year to commemorate the appeal?
In aid of Children in Need, Ilkley Grammar School held a non-uniform school day. On the basis that each student donated a minimum of £1 each, they could wear whatever they wanted and have a relaxed Friday, all whilst raising money for a good cause! Were it not for Covid-19, the school’s overall recognition for the appeal would have been greater. Imagine bake sales, imagine different year groups mixing to maximise donations; there would have been a larger awareness for the fundraiser across the board. Whilst parents and students were urged to donate via ParentPay owning to the ongoing health concerns, a limited number of collection buckets were placed around the school on Friday.
As of 2 pm on Monday 16th November, Ilkley Grammar School has raised an extraordinary total of £4937.68 – Our greatest total raised on a non-uniform day EVER!