Most students in St Andrews probably know the Charities Campaign as “those people who do Race2, right?” but over the last week, The Saint had the opportunity to sit down with Cat McGillivray, Sophie Franklin and Kelsey Gold of the Charities Campaign to once and for all hear the ins and outs of this amazing society. “If you’re a student in St Andrews, you’re already a member,” they stress.
Although they are one of the most humble societies in St Andrews, they are arguably the most successful. Throughout the year, the Charities Campaign hosts the Hamilton Shield Competition, an inter-hall fundraising competition, and sends their mascot Rory McLion to student events in order to get involved with student life. The annual springtime RAG (Raising and Giving) Week has previously featured a range of purple-clad activities from fine food fayres to ceilidhs, and sangria nights to open mic. Yet, perhaps their most notable events are the sponsored student races called Race2 and Jailbreak that take place over holidays and send students sprawling out across Europe in aid of a good cause.
After all of their efforts last year, the Charities Campaign raised a staggering total of £100,424.52 which they donated to their six nominated charities: Médecins Sans Frontières, Macmillan Cancer Support, Families First, The Royal National Lifeboat Institution (RNLI), Children Hospice Association Scotland (CHAS), and Maggie’s Cancer Caring Centers.
Nonetheless, Charities’ previous success can be seen to be extending to further achievements, as they turn their attention to student outreach programmes and continue to gain community recognition. With an unprecedented fundraising goal of £125,000 for the current academic year, they are encouraging all students to “get involved! There’s something for everyone and if there’s not we’ll create it.” The recent announcement of Race2 Prague has already gained much interest both in the Charities Campaign and among the student population with its new timing in the academic calendar. Additionally, several elected committee positions are up for grabs this year and no matter level of study or course, Charities encourages anyone interested to run.
Of course, Charities also welcomes students to help out in a smaller way. Their many bake sales throughout the year could use a host of bakers; their weekly cloak room at the Union’s Bop needs volunteers; and students are always wanted when the Charities Campaign has one-off events to organize. In other words, whatever students are interested in, the Charities campaign guarantees there is something for everyone.
To find out more, visit the Charities Campaign’s website at www.charities-campaign.org.uk