The situation as it stands

You may have heard us explain previously that Alopecia UK is facing big financial challenges as a result of the global COVID-19 pandemic. Year after year we have been extremely lucky to have wonderful fundraisers raise thousands of pounds to enable us to do the work we do. It is thanks to the amazing efforts of individual fundraisers that our income has grown to a point that in the year we celebrate our 15th birthday, we now have a staff team of six members of staff. We’ve been able to expand our services and resources and there is still so much more that we want to introduce to improve the lives of those affected by alopecia.

But many of the fundraising activities that normally bring in money to Alopecia UK have had to stop. For the time being there are no marathons, half marathons, 10ks, Colour Runs, Kiltwalks, cake sales, coffee mornings, dress down days, parties, balls, family fund days. And we have no way of knowing when any of these activities will be able to resume. The future of Alopecia UK’s fundraising income is uncertain. The recent national 2.6 Challenge campaign was something that many of our supporters got behind. This has provided us with a much-needed boost at a time when all other fundraising income has all-but stopped.

Ways to support Alopecia UK in a time of COVID-19

There are still some ways that you can support Alopecia UK in these socially distanced times. And we REALLY need lots of you to get involved in the weeks and months ahead if you’re able to (pretty please with a cherry on top!)

Become an AUK VIP

This one couldn’t be simpler. You pay £20 to Alopecia UK and in return you become one of our Very Important People. Not only do you get the warm fuzzy feelings from knowing you’re supporting the charity, we also give you an AUK VIP Card. Your AUK VIP card entitles you to discounts with participating suppliers on Alopecia UK’s Service Directory. With just one wig purchase, you can recoup your initial outlay of £20. PLUS, everyone who has signed up to be a 2020 AUK VIP by Sunday 31st May will be entered into a free prize draw for the chance to win an iPad!

Purchase your 2020 AUK VIP Card here

Celebrating a birthday? Set up a birthday Facebook Fundraiser

Birthdays in socially distanced times can be pretty rubbish. AUK team members Kerry, Amy and Naomi have all had ‘lockdown birthdays’. But if you want to put a positive spin on a birthday when you can’t meet with large numbers of family and friends, consider setting up a Facebook fundraiser. They’re super-easy to set up and most pages average about £100 of donations. That might not sound like a lot but these amounts add up quickly. And the best bit? Facebook don’t deduct any fees meaning we receive every penny donated!

Set up your Facebook fundraiser here

Contemplating a head shave? Consider making it a sponsored event!

This is one that we know is a very sensitive subject for many with alopecia. A head shave, particularly a first one for someone with alopecia, can be a very emotive experience. We’re certainly not wishing to be flippant in any way when promoting head shaves as a way to raise funds (Amy has discussed this in a separate blog post here) but we recognise that sponsored head shaves are a significant source of income for Alopecia UK, whether that be those who have alopecia shaving what’s left of their hair off, or someone without alopecia shaving their head in support of the charity. Up to now we’ve not actively promoted head shaves as a way to support Alopecia UK but given it’s a form of fundraising activity that can be done in times of social distancing AND that hairdressers are not due to reopen until 4th July at the earliest, we’re keen to let people know that this can be a brilliant way to raise much needed funds for Alopecia UK.

Set up your head shave fundraising page here

Give it up!

Whilst many fundraising challenges are off the cards right now, challenges involving giving something up can still be done. Perhaps you’re a chocaholic and can pledge to go a month without a mouthful of chocolatey goodness! Or perhaps you can knock the booze on the head for a few weeks? Or in the past we’ve had men give up shaving and grow their beards out for us? Lots of possibilities for ‘giving it up’! The harder the challenge, the more you might be able to raise for Alopecia UK.

Set up your ‘Give it up’ fundraising challenge page here

Start a regular donation to Alopecia UK

We recognise that this is a financially challenging time for lots of people. With many of us furloughed or out of work and the world facing a global recession, it’s hard for us to ask for cash. But if you are someone who is in a position to be able to make a monthly donation to us, we’d be very grateful. No amount too small or too big. It only takes a couple of minutes to arrange. And we promise never to pester you to increase your donation (we’re not that kind of organisation!).

Set up your monthly donation here

Join Alopecia UK's #AUK15for15 Campaign

Did we mention we are celebrating our 15th birthday this September?! At the beginning of the year, Team AUK set ourselves a target of raising £15,000 to mark our 15 years. This seems rather ambitious now given the circumstances, especially given that many of the challenges set by the AUK Team can now not happen with the social distancing restrictions that are in place. We're currently seeing which individual challenges can be substituted for others. It would really help if others would join our #AUK15for15 campaign. Perhaps you can set yourself a fundraising challenge around the number 15? A 15km run? An online Zoom quiz for 15 friends? 15 minutes of planking? Lots of possibilities! 

Set up your #AUK15for15 Fundraising Page here

Leave Alopecia UK a gift in your will

You can make a difference to the lives of those affected by alopecia by leaving a gift in your will to Alopecia UK. A gift in your will, no matter the size, will help us to continue to improve the lives of those affected by alopecia through our aims of Support, Awareness and Research. Further details can be found here.