While the idea of individuals raising money for charity by being sponsored to give something up for a period of time isn’t by any means new, there does seem to have been a growing interest in charity ‘abstainathons’ just recently – with new takes on the old idea cropping-up all over the place.
To name just a few, Cancer Research UK raised almost £4 million ($USD 6.4m) earlier this year when over 35,000 people signed-up to it’s inaugural Dryathalon – raising sponsorship for giving-up alcohol for the whole of January. Then there’s Macmillan Cancer Support’s Go Sober for October (based on the Australian Dry July campaign). The fundraising extension of the annual NHS stop smoking campaign Stoptober, with ex-smokers raising funds for a wide range of different charities. And, of course, this month there’s Movember (another great Aussie import) raising awareness and funds for Prostate Cancer charities through guys giving-up shaving their ‘tash for the month.
But now, the folks at FebFast over in Australia have moved beyond booze, fags and facial hair to fundraise from the other big over-dependence that so many of us have these days – over-dependence on all things digital. What a brilliant idea!
They’re challenging people to go on a digital detox for the 28 days of February 2014 to help raise funds for organisations working to find solutions for youth addiction.
Other FebFast fundraising options are to abstain from Alcohol, Sugar, or Caffeine – any of which seems to me likely to be easier than giving-up my regular digital fixes throughout the day.