Armed Forces Charity Gets Digital Fundraising Makeover
How a creative collaboration introduced new fundraising ideas for SSAFA
When SSAFA approached us to help give their branches a digital makeover we were delighted to help. We were also eager to involve our two interns. As graduates from a local university, we wanted to give them some hands-on experience and the opportunity to head up a project of their own.
As part of a wider project, we’ve set them the challenge of designing a new cashless donation point for the military charity’s Norfolk branch. To help with research, we invited a third intern from Foolproof, a user experience agency, to join the project.
Who are you and what are your roles in the project?
Reka: I’m the account management intern at Thyngs. My job is to assist the research by providing insight into how other charities collect cashless donations, and how they’ve coped with the transfer from primarily cash.
Harry: I’m the social media and marketing intern at Thyngs. My role in the project is to design the visuals and promotion of the donation points.
Naomi: I’m a user experience intern at Foolproof, and the researcher on this project.
What is the objective of this collaboration? What do you want to achieve for the client?
Naomi: Our aim is to design a cashless donation system for a local branch of SSAFA by understanding the user group in order to design the most suitable solution.
Harry: Even though traditional fundraising methods such as information booths and buckets aren’t available at this time, people can donate to the charity. It’s up to us to show them how.
Reka: We want to design a prototype of the experience in an innovative way. And in the process, raise awareness to volunteers for SSAFA and donors alike that cashless donations are an option now.
Are there any challenges in the project?
Reka: We have to think about how to bring people’s attention to this technology in a way that’s still safe. It’s one of the biggest considerations right now. And people still associate donations with cash.
Harry: From a design perspective, SSAFA doesn’t have a mascot that we can utilise, so we are also having to be innovative in its branding. Additionally, we are mindful of keeping with the charity’s brand guidelines and staying respectful to its cause.
Naomi: The biggest challenge is connecting with our target user group when we can’t speak to them face-to-face. We’re having to do a lot more desk research than we would normally do.
What are you enjoying most so far?
Harry: The best part for me is the creative freedom, and getting to work with people with different skillsets and backgrounds. It also feels really good to work towards something positive for this inspiring charity.
Reka: I’m really enjoying finding out how cashless donation is evolving. And the constant teamwork – the team is my ultimate favourite part, getting to hear all these ideas.
Naomi: I agree, the collaboration meetings are something I look forward to every week.
What positive outcome are you hoping for, and how could it benefit SSAFA?
Harry: I’m hoping it helps raise donations for SSAFA and help overcome some of the limitations that COVID has created. Also, I hope that it can be seen as an example of a way other charities can adapt. The goal is to present a few developed designs at the end of the project to SSAFA.
Reka: The Norfolk branch of SSAFA deserves to have more recognition too. I want to show them how cashless donations can work in their favour. We’re enabling new possibilities for the charity, helping them realise the potential they have.
Naomi: An ideal outcome is to have metrics to measure future projects by. Our self–proclaimed outcome is to have three concepts, which we hope SSAFA will like and utilise in some way for actual donations. The outcomes are all implemented differently, and offer a variety.
What came next…
James came to life in the Summer of 2021 and has been welcomed at events like the Battle of Proms. Read about his journey so far here.