Charlie Simpson is a small hero today. When the 8-year-old from Fulham wanted to do something to help earthquake victims in Haiti he simply got on his bike and raised money for Unicef. Simple you might say, but as we all know – sometimes things are just not that simple…
Having posted his appeal on JustGiving his original target of £500 is now at an amazing £55,000 – and rising. That’s an amazing fundraising tale for the best of us. So what’s the combination at work here?
Firstly, at its heart is that Charlie is a great little chap who was genuinely moved and motivated. Secondly, his parents helped him by showing him what to do, using Just Giving, and linking up with Unicef – a perfect fit for a great story of children helping children. This fit then created PR and a slot on BBC Breakfast this morning with Charlie, his mum and Unicef creating further follow ups through the day. Broadcast of a powerful story for a compelling cause with an irresistable message bearer propelled giving because it had these factors in place – and then it was easy to act upon.
In the words of Charlie, it all went a ‘bit mad’ – and I should imagine Charlie is tucked up right now fast asleep. But after today Charlie, his parents, Unicef and the people who gave should be intensely proud and inspired at a genuine act of uncomplicated compassion that was made possible by a complex combination of a terrible tragedy, amazing technology, good organisation, creativity and brilliant leadership and fundraising. We’re inspired Charlie – well done!