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How TheGivingMachine has helped with our fundraising

 

Autism All Stars is a small, independent charity run by autistic people and their loved ones with the intention of helping people of all ages and abilities feel valued and included.

We host bright, colourful character events which help bring autistic and non-autistic people together in safe, controlled environments where they can enjoy themselves without being judged.

When we first joined TheGivingMachine it was hard to see how donations of a few pence here and there could really make a difference to the people we support, but I’m glad to say that it soon became very clear!

Over the years TheGivingMachine has raised us over £1,500 which we’ve used in a wide variety of ways. Helping to make people’s lives easier and bringing them some much-needed joy doesn’t have to cost a fortune, and for a small charity like us, these funds have been invaluable in making a difference when it’s needed most.

We’ve invested a percentage of the funds into creating our amazing sensory den which we take to events so there’s always somewhere quiet for autistic people to visit if things get too much for them. Sensory toys like these cost anywhere between £5 and £15 each, and thanks to The Giving Machine our selection of toys is extremely popular and entertaining.

Another way we’ve used the money is to buy costumes and props for our character events, which as you can see here bring a great deal of happiness. For this particular event, Bellatrix’s wand cost £25, and we were able to buy it thanks to donations received through TheGivingMachine.

At Christmas we used the donations to help pay for a selection of specially selected toys and games for underprivileged children with additional needs. They were hand-picked for each individual child, and brought great happiness and excitement when we had them delivered by Santa himself.

Recently we worked with the real-life heroes of the NHS to promote the Covid vaccination programme, where people’s purchases from shops like Argos and Etsy paid for our incredible volunteers’ expenses. The Avengers were therefore able to assemble without worrying about the cost of train fares!

We’ve bought tickets for families attending our autism-friendly cinema clubs, paid for people in crisis to see professional counsellors, and so much more, all as a result of people taking a few seconds to join, and raise us a small donation every time they shop.

The best thing about our supporters using TheGivingMachine is that they can create funds for us in so many different ways: having fun at places like Chessington or saving money on their insurance through AXA; all the while they’re helping us care for some of the most vulnerable people in our society.

 

About the author

Rachel Jackson

Giving Director - Marketing

Rachel oversees all our marketing activities. Rachel is a wife and mum to two children, she enjoys theatre trips and (fair-weather) running. You may also find her treading the boards with a local theatre company.    

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