Alison Sclater is looking for ways of improving Church finances.
I wonder how many people have missed our monthly Saturday ‘bric-a-brac and book sales’ at Broadstone Methodist Church? As you may recall it was also possible to enjoy bacon butties with your coffee on these occasions. Sadly, none of this has been possible since the pandemic began. Eighteen months on, the coffee lounge is open again which is such good news but currently just Monday, Wednesday and Friday mornings, 10 to 12 noon, see page 27. It is hoped, that by autumn, the coffee lounge will be open on more days and that once a month on Saturday bacon butties will be on the menu again.
We don’t think it is practical to restart our monthly sales this year but we are, of course, missing the funds that were raised. It has been drawn to our attention that it is possible to attract donations from people’s online shopping. Through necessity, many of us have become quite adept at online shopping and statistically, online sales have risen rapidly. Broadstone Methodist Church has registered as a charity with Easyfundraising and with Smile.Amazon.
Information on these organisations can be found via www.easyfundraising.org.uk/causes/broadstonemethodistchurch/ and smile.amazon.co.uk
If you shop online we wonder if you could help us by starting to shop using your usual outlets but via these organisations. Easyfundraising has links with over 4700 retailers including, for example, Sainsbury, Tesco, Asda, Marks and Spencer, Waitrose, Morrisons, Ocado.
I decided that I would test this system! I signed in with Easyfundraising with my e mail address and a password and chose my charity. I then searched on the Easyfundraising website for the shop I wished to use, on this occasion Marks and Spencer. I then progressed to shop just as I always do, on the Marks and Spencer website, putting items in my bag and paying Marks and Spencer by credit card. Shortly afterwards I received a notification that Marks and Spencer had donated 2p to my chosen charity! The percentage donated does vary from retailer to retailer and with the products purchased and it is very small but the receipts will accumulate with more supporters. Similarly, Smile.Amazon is a simple and automatic way to support a charity of your choice every time you shop, at no cost to you. It can be activated in the Amazon Shopping App for iOS and Android phones. When you shop with Smile.Amazon you’ll find the exact same low prices, vast selection and convenient shopping experience as amazon.co.uk but with the added bonus that Smile.Amazon will donate a portion of the purchase price to your selected charity.
Personally, I enjoy a good rummage to find bargains that I probably will return to future sales for somebody else to purchase! However, currently it is safer and easier to fundraise whilst we do our ‘normal’ online shopping. We do hope that you will support Broadstone Methodist Church in this way if you are an online shopper!