By @SimonCocking

Describe the company – the elevator pitch …

One for Ireland is a youth-led fundraising movement that combines online crowdfunding through social media with traditional fundraising methods that are such a success in local communities. Our unique donation method which targets the retailer point of sale service allowing for a quick and easy donation that isn’t a huge burden in terms of time or money.

How are you different?

First, we’re about unity. One for Ireland brings together 8 major charities under one campaign with big name Irish retailers, corporate firms, the media and the public. Our campaign is unique because organisations can put away their need to compete for one weekend to come together around the issues. That’s an incredibly strong message. In addition, we aim to bring new ideas and technologies that can disrupt the traditional fundraising models.

Second, One for Ireland is open to everyone. The low donation rate, we ask for just €1, means that anyone can be involved, reinforcing the idea that social problems are solved by the community at large. This is helped in that we only ask for €1 once a year. We had over 55,000 donations in store in our first year. That tells us people like the idea.

Third, we are youth run and youth led. One for Ireland’s Director is 24 and many of our team are still in college. In the charity world that’s not something you hear everyday but for us it means being in touch with a whole group of people who are often overlooked when it comes to philanthropy.

Fourth, we give 100% of funds raised to charity. By privately fundraising for the campaign costs, we ensure that 100% of every euro donated goes directly to our charity partners.

Why will the company / product do well?

Simply put, One for Ireland is making donating accessible. Many people don’t have €8 a month, or don’t have time walking down a busy street on a Friday afternoon. We are building systems to bring philanthropy into people’s everyday lives in a way that is open to all. Additionally, because it responds to the most immediate issues and brings charities together, One for Ireland can continue to be relevant and useful. Given by the amount of people who donated last year, this is something people like. Our plan is to make it bigger and more widely available and easy to donate through the use of technology and new donation channels.

Where are you based?

For practical purposes our volunteer core team meet in Dublin City but the One for Ireland volunteer network, which includes the Lions Clubs of Ireland, are spread out natiowide. We support a project in each of 8 regions nationally meaning that the effects of One for Ireland can be felt across the country.

When was the company launched?

One for Ireland began as a nod and wink idea in college amongst a few friends . I guess you could say we started taking it seriously about March 2015 when we realised the idea could actually do a lot of good. We delivered our 1st campaign for Youth Homelessness in April 2016.

What have been your biggest wins to date?

The days at One for Ireland are full of ups and downs but raising over €172,000 in one day in our first year was definitely a huge plus, especially because when we were giving the money to organisations like Simon Community, Focus Ireland and Saint Vincent De Paul there was so much controversy surrounding homelessness in the media.

Every few months we strike up a new partnership and that gives us a boost and sustains us over the long desert of cold-calling and proposals.

What type of people (market segment) are you trying to attract to your product?

We want people, especially young people, who want to be a part of something great and who want to show the country what young people are capable of when given leadership responsibilities. The main skill with One for Ireland is giving a sh*t, but it helps to work with people who have experience in media and communications as well as design, payment technologies, digital marketing and web development.

We also want to reach out to Irish businesses and retailers who want to make a difference in their community and support young people in Ireland.

Tell us about your team?

Our team has one foot in and one foot out of college. We’re young and enthusiastic and willing to make mistakes and try new things. Because it’s a new project there isn’t much constraint on where we can develop so conversations about our direction are varied and fun.

Our skills are split between media, social media, web development, graphic design, video skills and marketing. There’s 8 of us and we have a volunteer specifically looking after each one of these areas and but often our skills overlap so we share a lot of tasks. Strategy is a group effort and we coordinate this through weekly team meetings and business development is a rolling group task.

What are you long term plans for your product / company?

We aim for One for Ireland to be an annual event guaranteed to bring lasting change to the most immediate issues of the day for youth in Ireland. It will be a focal point for youth led change in Ireland that, once established can be exported abroad as a model for change.

What are your favourite tech gadgets?

There is debate amongst the team, from Smartphones to drones delivering medical aid, the impact and spread of tech gadgets that can deliver good and make a real difference is exciting for the future.   Some excitement from one (older) team member regarding the resurgence of the Nokia 3310 which will reduce the daily distractions (except for playing Snake 🙂 )

 

 

What tech gadgets do you wish you could use to help you?

The key for us to increase the ease of donation so that it becomes an everyday easy action.

  • The launch of Android Pay recently is technology that we could utilise as part of this focus.
  • Drone delivery could help us deliver our merchandise to the 1500 retailers nationally who are supporting the campaign.
  • Electric cars could reduce our carbon footprint as we travel the country promoting One for Ireland.
  • Virtual Assistants could help us with managing our enquiries and busy schedule as we get closer to campaign weekend April 28th – May 1st 2017.

 Anything else you’d like to add / we should have asked?             

Yes, the campaign. One for Ireland runs from 28th April-1st May 2017. You’ll be able to donate online and in-store in any of our partner retailers. We need your help though, urge your company, your family, your club and your friends to get involved,volunteer, donate and be part of the movement to make a real difference.

How do people get in touch with you?

If you want to find out more or get involved you can email us at [email protected]


If you would like to have your company featured in the Irish Tech News Business Showcase, get in contact with us at [email protected] or on Twitter: @SimonCocking