The charitable trust formed by UK trade association, bacta, has set itself an ambitious target of increasing its contribution to children’s charity, Rays of Sunshine to over £500,000 by the end of 2017. The target, which equates to an additional £190,000, will be boosted by #Tickets2wishes, a simple and fun initiative designed primarily for the association’s FEC members.
#Tickets2wishes is administered by bacta in aid of Rays of Sunshine, the charity which helps grant wishes to children living with a serious or life-limiting illness. #Tickets2wishes encourages customers to donate left over redemption tickets into a special merchandised tube: the operator matches the amount and then passes it on to bacta, who in turn donate it to Rays of Sunshine.
Bacta vice president, James Miller, who helped pioneer the concept and has raised £10,000 to date, said: “We wanted to do something that would help make happy memories for families who may not be having such a fun time at the moment. #Tickets2wishes seemed like the perfect way for us to help raise money for Rays of Sunshine and, at the same time, engage with our customers and the community at large. This is all about friends and family having fun together.”
He added: “From our experience, #Tickets2wishes also represents an excellent opportunity for businesses and the industry, to benefit from positive PR and extend their social media profile. It’s very important to promote the positive fundraising stories on social media: it has helped to raise the profile of Rays of Sunshine and shown the positive side of the industry, it’s a great partnership and very fulfilling for everyone involved – the charity, the venue, the customers, the industry and most importantly, the individual recipients and his/her family. We urge all operators of redemption machines to participate in this fun, easy, fundraising opportunity, and in the process help brighten the lives of children who are less fortunate.”
Jane Sharpe, Chief Executive of Rays of Sunshine said “Over the past six years, bacta members have worked tirelessly to help us grant magical wishes for seriously ill children across the UK, raising over £300,000. We can only continue our work thanks to the generous support of organisations such as bacta and its members. #Tickets2wishes has been extremely successful to date and we urge operators to jump on the bandwagon and continue this exciting trend.”
John White, bacta’s chief executive, believes the latest initiative demonstrates the bond that members have developed with Rays of Sunshine. He said: “This is a fabulous charity that bacta and its members have supported for nearly six years. To see how that support has been translated by Rays of Sunshine into giving such pleasure and joy to children with life-limiting illnesses has touched every single person in the business. I am certain #Tickets2wishes will prove to be a formidable fundraising initiative which will help us meet our target and enable us to make more wishes come true.”
The #Tickets2wishes ‘kit’ comprising a tube and a poster, is available at Parveen@bacta.org.uk.