Did you know that tomorrow, December 1, is Giving Tuesday? This year we’re asking our supporters to make a small donation of £4.20, so we thought we’d answer your questions (before you’ve even asked them).
So what’s this #GivingTuesday all about then?
Giving Tuesday is a global movement that started as a reaction to Christmas shopping, and to Black Friday, which is now the biggest shopping day of the year in the UK. You might think the last thing we need is another ‘day’. But Giving Tuesday is designed to make people stop spending for a minute and think about how they might give something back, and that can’t be a bad thing, can it? This year Manchester has become the first in the country to officially become a Giving Tuesday city. That means we’ve got the chance to show that we’re the most generous, compassionate city in the UK.
OK, maybe I’m interested. But why should I support Back on Track?
Good question! Here are five reasons (we have many more where they came from):
1. Our work is needed more than ever. Manchester still has some of the most deprived areas in England, and we help the most disadvantaged people overcome a whole range of problems. Last year we helped around 1100 local people become more employable, confident and qualified – the highest number ever.
2. We’re all about impact. Since our employability project started last year 40 people – about a third, with many more on the way – have gone into paid employment.
3. We’re also about solutions. We found out that there was a need for disadvantaged peoples to get hands-on work experience in a supportive environment before they were ready to go for jobs. We spent nine months raising the money to create an on-site café, and since it opened just two months ago three people have already gone on to paid work.
4. We are truly local. We only support people from Greater Manchester. Your donation won’t be swallowed up into some giant national fundraising account.
5. And you don’t have worry about waste, either. According to the Charity Commission, the people that make sure charities are doing what they are supposed to do, Back on Track spends 99.1% of its income on charitable activities.
Well, that all sounds great, but you would say that, wouldn’t you?
Don’t take our word for it. What about the word of Sue Murphy, the deputy leader of Manchester city council? She recently said “Back on Track are a credit to Manchester and have transformed the lives of some of our most disadvantaged residents.”
Well maybe…I’m still thinking about it though. Convince me.
OK. Let me tell you about Paul. Paul was referred to Back on Track by his probation worker.
“My confidence was so low, I was afraid of mixing with new people and I wanted to change. After about a month I began to feel as if my whole body had been lifted up. I began to feel like I belonged somewhere. Back on Track has given me positivity, confidence, happiness, and life fulfillment. The values of helping others, helping in the community and being able to build relationships has made my journey amazing. I hope this can inspire others to do the same.”
Your donation can help other people like Paul change their lives and make a positive contribution.
But why £4.20? That’s a bit random isn’t it?
Aha! So glad you asked us that. One of the ways that we help people is by paying for them to travel to and from our centre, if they can’t afford to. Most of the people we support are on benefits and very low incomes. They are trying to find a way to a better life by getting new skills and experience; we need to make sure nothing stands in their way. But because more people are coming, and from further away – and because prices are going up – our travel bill this year is higher than ever before. The average cost that we pay to one person for a day’s travel is £4.20 – the cost of a day bus pass in Manchester. That’s a very significant amount for someone on a very low income to pay. But if you can afford it, we’re asking you to donate just this small amount so we can continue to cover people’s travel fares in 2016.
OK, I’m in. How can I donate?
It’s all on our website at www.backontrackmanchester.org.uk/donate. The easiest way is by PayPal, but we do have a range of ways you can donate to us. Thank you for listening.