It's the season for giving: student and staff efforts in 2011/12

What’s that big yellow teddy bear you see everywhere? Why are there lots of men sporting dodgy moustaches? Do you have what it takes to make vulnerable children believe in Christmas? Find out about all the funny, brave or crazy things that Glamorgan students and staff are doing for charities this year!

Teddy bear watching sunset - photo by Alexandre Normand

Original photo on FlickR

Charitable efforts at Glamorgan

Many people at the University of Glamorgan like to offer something to good causes. Whether they spend time volunteering, prepare gifts or food donations, or raise money through charity efforts. Here’s an overview of the campaigns that you can find out about on this page;

Support Movember - photo by Louise Docker Movember

During November each year, Movember is responsible for the sprouting of moustaches on thousands of men’s faces in the UK and around the world. Why? To raise awareness and vital funds for men’s health, specifically prostate cancer and other cancers that affect men.

Here’s the Movember news story from Glamlife – and, importantly, the Mospace Glamorgan University network – if you want to support the overall team rather than individual moustaches, you can donate to the Glamorgan Movember team.

GlamGift

GlamGift is an annual fundraising competition for students and staff based in the Faculty of Business and Society, established to raise money for various charity organisations.

To motivate students and staff to embrace the generous spirit of the season, and help out with the fundraising, a variety of awards will be earned by the most successful and most creative fundraising efforts… Have a look at the GlamGift web page for more info and to register your own GlamGift plans – speak with your Award Tutor or Scheme leader if you want to get involved. You can also contact Henry Enos for further information.

The first events that have been announced are:

Tinned foods in supermarket - photo by cherrylet Foodbank – by the Chaplaincy’s Meeting House Group

There are families struggling to put food on the table. Today. In the UK. For people on low incomes, a sudden crisis such as losing a job or a delay in benefit payments can mean that a family goes hungry.

UK Foodbanks work with local voluntary organisations to provide emergency food and support to people in crisis.

The Meeting House Group’s Foodbank collection is ready to receive your food donations now. If you are a student, you are also welcome to join the Meeting House Group.

Santa Clause The Students’ Union’s Santa Appeal

The Santa Appeal is your chance to help prove to children in your area that Christmas does exist!

This Appeal invites people to donate presents that are given to children, including the vulnerable, to ensure no one misses out.

Presents can be handed in until 25th November and every present counts. It does not have to be large or expensive; it’s the thought that counts.

If you wish to help, please see the Student Union’s Santa Appeal page for details.

Individual fundraising efforts

Staff and students also make individual fundraising efforts. The Glamlife Team can’t know all of them, but here are ones we have heard of recently:

  • Catherine Farrell (Professor of Public Management) is one of the people running the annual Christmas fair in Plasturton Gardens in Cardiff, raising in excess of £1,100 each year. This year, the chosen charities are Bobath and Ty Hafan. They will also raise a third for use in the Gardens, aiming to purchase some Victorian seats to replace the existing wooden benches. The fair this year will be held on Sunday 18th December at 3pm in Plasturton Gardens.
  • Lisa Worton, one of the Student Finance Advisers, is taking part in the London Marathon 2012 and raising money for Children with Cancer UK
  • Glamorgan student Jamie Long is planning to do a Help for Heroes charity event with a performance by one of the X Factor 2010 contestants.

Children in Need on campus

Here’s how you can contribute at the University of Glamorgan:

  • The Faculty of Advanced Technology will host a cake sale and raffle for Children in Need on 18th November 2011 in G Block foyer from 9.30am onwards.
  • The Faculty of Health Sports and Science are holding a fund raising event in support of Children in Need on the 18th November in the Matrix at Upper Glyntaff from 10.00am. Activities include “Guess the name of the bear” at a £1.00 a name, winner gets bear. You’ll be able to have your picture taken with a Storm Trooper of Star Wars for £1.00 (card board cut out, bring your own camera). There will also be a cake sale.
  • There will be a cake sale in the Postgraduate Centre for Children in Need, run by the Research Office, the European and External Resource office and Commercial Services Office
  • There will be a Wild West Heroes Day in the Faculty of Business and Society to raise money for Children in Need.
  • There will be a War of the Worlds Music / Rock Opera Show organised by musician and lecturer Paul Peachey in the Students’ Union. Tickets can be purchased from the Business School reception for £2.50.

Background: What is Children in Need?

Pudsey Bear

If you visit the Children in Need website, you’ll notice a big yellow teddy bear with a spotted bandage over one eye. He’s everywhere, and his name is Pudsey (after the home town of Joanna Ball, who created him). This year, Pudsey will be 25 years old.

In 1927, a BBC Radio station decided to see if it could raise money for children with one of its programmes. A full five minutes on Christmas Day were dedicated to the idea – and £1,143 pounds, 18 Shillings and Threepence were raised. Ever since then, the BBC have dedicated airtime to raising money for charitable causes that benefit children. Children in Need is the banner that these efforts have adopted in recent times.

Children in Need is many things. For one, it is an official, registered charity, giving money to projects that benefit disadvantaged children in the UK. For another, it is a TV “telethon” – a programme taking up several prime time hours on BBC 1, taking place on 18th November. But more importantly, many people all over the UK (including staff and students at the University of Glamorgan) are raising money for Children in Need throughout the month of November – and some, all year round. Children in Need is a highly regional effort – there is a dedicated website for Children in Need Wales and high profile events are going to be taking place in Cardiff – for example, there will even be live broadcasts from the Universiy of Glamorgan’s Royal Welsh College of Music and Drama.

Where the money goes

The money that Children in Need collects is distributed, as grants, to not-for-profit organisations and charities. These, in turn, must be UK-based, and use the money for projects that benefit disadvantaged under-18s.

You can have a look at the projects Children in Need funded over the past few years online – you’ll find several in Cardiff, Pontypridd, and the local area.