As part of entries to JK 2020 in the North East of England, we invited entrants to make a donation to the Orienteering Foundation. This raised £870 from 91 donors.
When we learnt that JK 2020 had to be cancelled because of the Coronavirus outbreak, we worked with the JK organisers and SiEntries to give entrants the opportunity to donate their 90% refunded entry to the Orienteering Foundation. This raised another £2734 from 46 donors. We have also heard from some entrants who didn't have time to indicate via SiEntries they would donate their refund, but have since donated directly to us (anyone still wishing to do this can do so here).
Together with the Gift Aid we can claim on eligible donations, this will all generate more than £4000 in donations to the Orienteering Foundation. We are incredibly grateful to everyone who has donated.
At the same time, our feelings go out to the JK organising team whose many hours of volunteer effort will not come to fruition this Easter. It is also heart breaking to see Orienteering in lockdown, along with many other activities and the whole country, to curb the spread of the virus.
For this reason we are keen to use these funds as effectively as possible to get us through this time, and kickstart orienteering when restrictions ease. We are therefore putting the donated money towards a Back to Orienteering fund, to support projects seeking to get us through this difficult time and reignite our sport in due course.
Possible projects to make use of the Back to Orienteering fund might include:
- Development of orienteering technology that can keep orienteers engaged while at home (like Lockdown Orienteering).
- Taking advantage of enforced time at home to develop other technology to be used when we return to normal orienteering.
- Resources to help clubs continue to operate while at home (like British Orienteering offering online meeting facilities to clubs here).
- Enhancement of events that have had to be rescheduled, so they come back better than before.
- Advertising and promotion for come and try it events when things open up again, to win over newcomers.
The last is particularly exciting. Many activities and sports are currently taking a back seat, and, while that is devasting, it also presents a huge opportunity when things get back to normal. If orienteering comes out of this on the front foot then clubs, squads, schools etc. can capture newcomers who might be interested in trying a new sport.
If you have any ideas for Back to Orienteering projects, then we would love to receive your grant application (see Apply for Funding and don't forget to read our article on Writing a good application). Alternatively if have the seed of an idea and you need help developing it, please Contact Us.
With your help we can do more.