Touching Lives - November 2005
Touching Tiny Lives - a fantastic first year!
Our aim is to find answers to premature birth, pre-eclampsia and other life-threatening pregnancy complications, and to develop better treatments for babies who are born with problems and need special care.
You will have read about some Campaign developments in recent editions of Touching Lives magazine, but this is a good opportunity to review our progress one year in.
Firstly,THANK YOU to all our many supporters — longstanding and new — who have contributed so generously to Touching Tiny Lives. Action Medical Research is entirely reliant on voluntary support, which means the success of Touching Tiny Lives depends on you.
By the end of this year we will have raised over £900,000,a fantastic amount which has enabled us to begin 18 new research projects in hospitals and universities around the country. Right now leading doctors and scientists are working hard to find answers to these difficult and complex problems, and we must make sure they have the funding to complete this crucial research.
Pedalling for Tiny Lives This July, 180 cyclists completed our London to Paris sponsored bike ride, raising over £170,000 for Touching Tiny Lives research.
Earlier, in May, the ‘Barking Badgers’ group, headed by Tesco’s Tim Mason, travelled to Italy for the Giro del Tasso — Tour of the Badger. Money raised from this event, which took them from Milan to Venice, is helping to fund a two-year research project into the causes of premature labour.
Trekking for Tiny Lives Supporters taking part in our sponsored treks to Peru and China this year have all been busy raising funds — so far, over £280,000 has been raised or pledged.
3,000 new donors Thank you to each and every one of the 3,000 individuals who began to support us this year by giving a regular donation, typically between £10 and £15 every month. Regular donations are essential, enabling us to plan for the future, secure in the knowledge that we will have funds to meet our research commitments.
Christmas appeal Many of you responded generously to last year’s Christmas appeal. We raised nearly £9,000 in donations from supporters.
Mothercare support Leading retailer Mothercare has supported Touching Tiny Lives, by donating part of the proceeds of a new small-baby clothing range. The Charity has also benefited from the generosity of the Mothercare Foundation.
Davina’s Day Out ‘Big Brother’ presenter Davina McCall took to the streets in May for the ‘Davina’s Day Out’ sponsored walk in Portsmouth. She led 2,000 people on the first ever mass sponsored walk along the Millennium Trail. The weather was kind, and so were the people taking part, raising over £40,000 towards our target.
Tea for Tiny Lives Many Action Medical Research committees took part in our Tea for Tiny Lives fundraiser in May, holding tea parties and coffee mornings in aid of the Campaign. Thank you to all our volunteers who went the extra mile to support Touching Tiny Lives this year.
BBC Lifeline Over 2.5 million people watched the Touching Tiny Lives appeal on the Lifeline programme in May. Presented by ‘Cold Feet’ actress Fay Ripley, the appeal told the stories of two families who have experienced the painful reality of premature birth, and also featured one of our London research teams, working to bring an end to the misery of premature labour. Through the appeal we raised over £5,000 in donations from the public, many of whom are new supporters of the Charity.
You may have spotted a Touching Tiny Lives poster this summer in shopping centres and supermarkets throughout the UK. This is thanks to the generosity of outdoor advertising company, Clear Channel, who kindly donated some poster sites to help us promote the Campaign. We hope to do further cost-effective poster promotions in the future.
TV advertising We ran a six-week Direct Response Television (DRTV) advertising promotion during the summer in support of Touching Tiny Lives. The 90-second advert, appeared on selected digital TV channels throughout April and May, and generated enquiries from people who subsequently decided to give a regular donation.
Leaflet promotions in GPs’ surgeries We distributed over 100,000 Touching Tiny Lives information leaflets to GPs‚ surgeries nationwide. These leaflets were on display in patient waiting rooms, helping to raise awareness of the campaign and encouraging people to support us.
Media publicity Touching Tiny Lives has been in the news on numerous occasions during the past year, notably in June when the Charity was featured twice in one day on BBC television news! More details on our recent publicity can be found on page 22.