Case Study: The Down Syndrome Centre's Mission 21 Campaign

Recently our client, The Down Syndrome Centre, with the help of our Text-to-Donate platform achieved great success on their Mission 21 Campaign. Read more to find out just how they did it...

4FM presenters meet children at the Down Syndrome Centre.

4FM presenters meet children at the Down Syndrome Centre.

The Charity

The Down Syndrome Centre is Ireland’s first and only centre focused on services for children with Down syndrome. The charity was started by Peter and Mary Gaw after experiencing frustration with the lack of resources available for their two youngest children who have Down syndrome themselves.

The Challenge

Last April, the Down Syndrome Centre launched their Mission 21 campaign, aiming to raise €21,000 for refurbishments to their service centre in Sandymount. This money would allow the Down Syndrome Centre to expand their services and help more families dealing with Down syndrome.

The Approach

The Down Syndrome Centre utilised a combination of tech & media-based services to achieve their massive goal. Any charity can and should follow their example; it’s a matter of working smarter, not harder. The Down Syndrome Centre had experienced the power of LIKECHARITY’S text-to-donate service, during its Christmas Text Appeal in December 2014 and World Down Syndrome Day each March. The ease of use for both the Down Syndrome Centre and their donors, in addition to the mass appeal of text donations, made Text-to-Donate the perfect choice. The Down Syndrome Centre tossed aside outdated fundraising methods and instead used technology to further their mission, and you can too! Here’s how…

Step 1: Strong advertising method

The Down Syndrome Centre needed to appeal to a large audience as they had a challenge ahead of them, so they teamed up with Dublin radio station, Classic Hits 4FM. 4FM got their entire station behind the campaign and set their listeners the task of raising €21,000.

The Down Syndrome Centre’s partnership with 4FM gave them a strong media presence and was a very smart marketing decision. 4FM was able to help them to extend their reach all over Dublin.

Step 2: Easy way for donors to contribute

The Down Syndrome Centre had a strong campaign with clever marketing and a successful media partnership, but a campaign can only go so far without an easy way for donors to donate. This is where LIKECHARITY comes in.

For the Down Syndrome Centre, Text-to-Donate made all the difference.

First we set up a keyword (MISSION) for donors to text to 50300 and donate €4. Setting up a text-to-donate service through us is unique because we eliminate the middleman...

  • We partner with the phone networks which makes collecting donations seamless for charities.
  • We provide the technology so that the funds will be raised efficiently.
  • We partner with the charity and provide impeccable customer service to ensure that everything is running smoothly.
  • We also assist the charities in signing up for a ComReg licence so that their advertisements can be properly regulated.

LIKECHARITY is a one stop shop for charities, and this made the job much easier for the Down Syndrome Centre.

The Down Syndrome Centre used our donation monitoring tool, Oz, to track the donations coming in and analyse when the donations spiked. This gave them several important advantages…

  1. They could let the radio station know how much money had been raised, keeping the donors motivated to reach the goal of 21,000 euro.
  2. They could note what was working best and focus their efforts. For example; donations were greatest when presenters read the call-to-action, as opposed to recorded ads, so the Down Syndrome Centre started doing this more.
  3. Through LIKECHARITY, the Down Syndrome Centre had a transparent way of keeping track of their funds.

The immediacy of Text-to-Donate was essential in this campaign. Listeners were asked to participate and they did, right then and there, because such a convenient payment method was available.

What our client said

Text donation is the easiest option for people nowadays. People spend so much time texting anyway, so we didn’t have to ask them to do anything new! But the main reason is that there is little to no effort involved in sending a text.
— Aileen Moon, Fundraising and Events Coordinator at the Down Syndrome Centre

The Results

  • Through Text-to-Donate, the Down Syndrome Centre was able to surpass their goal of €21,000.
  • More than 7,500 people used Text-to-Donate to send text donations of €4 for the Mission 21 Campaign, making up the total earnings of €31,638.
  • The ease of LIKECHARITY’S donation monitoring tool allowed the Down Syndrome Centre to stay constantly up-to-date on their progress and then thank their donors for their contribution. 

Why it worked

Text-to-Donate made donating easy for the donors and retrieving funds easy for the Down Syndrome Centre. With an effective text-to-donate technology on their side, the Down Syndrome Centre was able to focus on marketing their campaign well, leading to an incredibly successful partnership between LIKECHARITY and the Down Syndrome Centre.

The Down Syndrome Centre was smart to use media partnerships and Text-to-Donate to enhance their campaign. Ireland is known for being a generous population, charities must simply provide them with the right tools and they will readily contribute.