Bringing Rescue Fundraising to Bath
Students volunteer their time to meet the public, spread the word about Rescue, and collect donnations
On the 6th of May, creative writing students from Bath Spa University held a fundraising activity in the centre of Bath. A group of 8 students stood in varying locations around Bath town to collect money for Avon Search and Rescue.
The Avon Somerset Search and Rescue was formed in 1975 and operates in Bristol and Bath. It is completely volunteer driven. The Avon Search and Rescue is an essential service run completely by funding from the public.
In the last 5 years, there have been 5 deaths within the Avon River, and without the search and rescue teams this would have undoubtedly been a lot more. Being able to raise money for this service was thus very important to students and staff at Bath Spa University.
During the day, eight students stood along Milsom Street in Bath and raised over £50. A week earlier, there had been another fundraiser in Bath, in the Southgate shopping centre. Avon Somerset Search and Rescue had a vehicle and a stand, which really attracted the public. They also had stretchers and demonstrations, showing off just a fraction of what they do. This was a great way to learn about their work! We are proud to say that this fundraiser earned over £250.
While fundraising, I met two Swiss ladies who were travelling in Bath and who gave money to the cause, after briefly asking what we were raising money for and its importance. I also met a traveller from Hong Kong who gave money without even questioning. The generosity from people who were only passing through and wouldn’t feel the effects of the money raised was amazing and heart-warming to see.
Of course, the locals helped too. Dog walkers, people travelling in bath and older citizens were the most willing to donate.
A key moment for me was when a man with downs syndrome asked me, “Why do we want to help people?” The simplest question of them all perplexed me. I mean, because it’s nice to do so? Or, because it’s the good thing to do? Or perhaps, and I’ve had a thought about the exact reason we should help people, because how can we expect others to help us if we don’t help them first? Of course, it’s also a moral idea. If we can help, we should.
Both of these fundraisers, which earned over £300 for Avon Somerset Search and Rescue, are not only vital for the money, but for the publicity too. It’s important for the public to understand what Rescue does so that they can continue their work, especially since this charity is completely volunteer driven with all of its money and resources donated by the public.
Bath Spa University and Avon Somerset Search and Rescue have worked together to raise money for a great cause. In addition, Santander has generously agreed to double any money that we raise. This means that we were able to raise over £600 that will undoubtedly be put to good use.