Parish uses online giving to save churchyard and cemetery
Fr Gareth Coombes, Parish Priest in the Parish of Treharris, Trelewlis, Bedlinog & Llanfabon, shares the success he’s found in using online fundraising to save special spaces in church life:
When I joined the Parish four years ago, the graveyard fund for Llanfabon wasn’t in a good way. Unfortunately, the condition of the churchyard and cemetery was in a poorer state than the fund. I was having calls and letters regarding the condition of these special laces before I was licensed; it was something I needed to move quickly to address before these spaces deteriorated further.
Firstly, I launched an online appeal using the platform JustGiving as a quick solution. However, an amount was deducted from the appeal by JustGiving as a fee so I realised we would need a better long-term solution.
With this in mind, we moved over to BTmydonate which no longer exists, but no fee was deducted and they claimed the gift-aid on our behalf.
Currently we use Virgin Money Giving, again no fee is deducted whilst they do offer the donor the option of covering the processing fee. They also claim any gift-aid on our behalf.
You can visit our Parish profile by clicking here.
Under the profile we have set up various campaigns, including our graveyard and cemetery appeals for Llanfabon and St Cynon’s. We launch these appeals at Christmas each year and then promote them using our social media on Mothering Sunday, Father’s Day, Easter and at Christmas.
We’ve also found it helpful that you can generate a QR code for each appeal/campaign and put this on signs around the churchyard and noticeboards etc. This enables those with a smartphone to donate using their mobiles. You can read about getting started with QR codes here.
From 2017 to now, we have received around £9,000, including the graveyard and cemetery appeals.
We’ve also been using online fundraising for other appeals relevant to the life of the church and parish. This year £8,704 has came in through this online platform which is a significant amount of funds that may not have reached us.
If you’d like to learn more about online giving, the Diocese has prepared a series of resources and webinars to help you begin.