Mark your calendars! The 2022 birthday fundraiser to mark RA’s 51st birthday is coming!
There we have it, gold on pink. This year’s birthday fundraiser will take place from Thursday, 11th August until Wednesday, 17th August. We will kick off with a three-day auction of fan items from Thursday, 11th August to Sunday, 14th August. The auction is followed by a much-loved fixed-price sale on Etsy/Pattern from Sunday, 14th August to Wednesday, 17th August. Both fundraiser parts will feature a wide range of items, from posters, DVDs and one-off pieces to amazing fan sets, handmade tags and other paRAphernalia. All items have been made and/or donated by fellow fans – a massive thank you to all of the donors.
The timing has been set this way in order to have all generated monies in my account prior to RA’s birthday on the 22nd of August. The plan is to transfer our donation in lieu of a birthday present on the 22nd. As in previous fundraisers, the donation will benefit LOROS hospice. I have made that executive decision for two reasons: a) I think our donations can make the most difference when we continually support *one* charity. b) By donating via Richard’s fundraiser site for his mother via muchloved, we can attach our birthday message and be sure that Richard will actually be notified of his gift. I hope this is ok with you. (For the Holiday Fundraiser, we can then go with Richard’s nominated Cancer Research charity.)
As always, the details of the items are will be released over the coming weeks – to keep the suspense 😉. Some items will be posted by the donors themselves, but all proceeds (minus costs of shipping and fees) will go into the charity donation for LOROS.
The Small Print: Auctions
The upcoming charity auctions will be conducted on eBay for ease of transaction, access and visibility. They are all private and non-commercial, a fundraiser for charity. I.e. the proceeds of the eBay auctions will all be donated to our chosen charity (minus incurred costs such as eBay and Paypal transaction fees). Postage costs will be covered by the proceeds and/or donation by sender. Items will be sent anywhere in the world. You can bookmark my eBay site “guylty” already, https://www.ebay.de/usr/guylty, but the listings will be individually linked to here on my blog once the auctions go live on the day!
So, how does an eBay auction work? In case you are not familiar with the online marketplace, you need to register on eBay in order to be able to bid. You can do so on the eBay platform of your country/territory and in your own language – you will still be able to access the auctions (which will most likely be conducted over my home platform, eBay IE). I will provide direct links to the individual auctions, and you can click on them to access the items that you are interested in. From then on it’s pretty self-explanatory. You will see the current highest bid on the item, and you can bid more in order to win the auction. The items will go to the highest bidders, upon payment. If you are the auction winner, you will receive a notification e-mail that contains all the info on how to pay for your item and other next steps.
As a little disclaimer, please bear in mind that the fan items are pre-loved unless described otherwise. That means there may be signs of use on the items, as per item descriptions. For the hand-made items it goes without saying that they might deviate in details – but are perfect in imperfection! Please also note that I have taken the liberty of setting a starting price for the auctions. These reflect regular prices of the items as researched on eBay/Amazon and are an attempt by me to guarantee a nice minimum donation.
Since our items are all for fundraising, we are charging no postage fees (see above). The items will be carefully packaged and sent anywhere in the world. In some cases, the items will be despatched directly from the donor and not me. Depending on items and final price, some packages may be sent by registered mail, so buyers will receive a tracking number to track the progress of their parcel. No returns possible, I am afraid, as this is a charity project. This is particularly important to consider when bidding on some of the more fragile items that will be on offer. Posting is at the buyers risk. But please consider this: First and foremost, your bids and purchases are a donation to charity – except that you receive an item in return. Bidding is open to all, anywhere in the world! (But to avoid disappointment, I would like to ask you to please have a look at your national postal services and check whether your postal provider actually accepts incoming mail from abroad *at this time*. Delays in shipping your auction winnings to you may be possible. Even within Europe, postal times for anything other than small letters seem to be up to two weeks at the moment…)
The Small Print: Fixed-Price Sale
The affordable fixed-price items for a simple purchasing transaction will be on sale via my storefront on my temporary Pattern by Etsy website. This is the URL: https://scissorsandsmiles.patternbyetsy.com The items have a set price and are all priced to include regular postage anywhere in the world. On offer will be multiples of lower priced fan items, mostly hand-made by fellow fans. You can buy multiples of the same item (via the “quantity” button in the individual listing) – or buy several different items during the same session. The shopping process is pretty self-explanatory on Etsy – and you don’t have to register for an account there in order to buy. To give people from other time-zones a better chance at picking up items in the sale, I will be releasing the Etsy goodies in two batches, separated by 12 hours or so. That strategy has proven successful in the last sale. I’ll announce the new release on blog.
IMPORTANT: The full range of items on offer will only be visible on the above mentioned Pattern by Etsy site (not my regular Etsy storefront.) Note: As this is my own Etsy shop, there will be other items visible that are not part of the fundraiser, especially if you happen to access the sale via the regular Etsy site. But the fundraiser items will be clearly labelled as such so you know that you are buying an item whose proceeds go into our donations pot. (Learn more about checking out on Etsy as a guest user HERE.) Also, in some territories (US, UK, etc.), you may be charged sales taxes or VAT. This is automatically added by Etsy and beyond my control. However, postage costs are included in all Etsy listings, so there are no additional costs for that (unless you want tracking).
The Final Donation
The final sum consists of the net proceeds of the auctions and fixed-price sale minus shipping costs. In previous years, fans have also contributed to the fundraiser by donating money. I can facilitate that via a Paypal button here on my blog. The donations will go straight into the fundraiser pot. – As mentioned above, the actual transfer of the donation to LOROS is planned for Richard’s birthday. I will update you here on blog and on Twitter once the donation has been made. It will be clearly labelled as such on the muchloved site, and I will link to it so you can see it. In the past, we have occasionally had delays because eBay can be tricky with their transfer of money. This has to do with seller limits (i.e. the amount of profit they allow a seller to make per month) and the time it takes eBay to transfer the proceeds to my account. With a week between auction end and RA’s birthday, I hope we will have enough time to facilitate donating on the 22nd of August. (Etsy is faster and has proven much less trouble than eBay in previous years.) So, fingers crossed for a smooth financial transaction. And pray to the gods of accounting that Sonja gets her accounts right – and quick.
A Fan Event for All
It goes without saying that the fundraiser is not only a way to generate a donation as a gift for Richard, but also an occasion for fans to come together, celebrate our favourite actor – and do good at the same time. I do *not* want anyone to feel obliged to spend money or to make a donation in Richard’s honour via this fan event. And I also hope that no one is going to feel too disappointed if they miss out on a particular item in the sale or has been outbid in the auctions.The point of the fundraiser is not to disappoint or outprice anyone. Contributions range wider than won auctions on eBay, purchases on Etsy or monetary contributions to the final sum. Every bid, even if unsuccessful and you don’t get the item in the end, counts because it will have contributed to the final price. And every shout-out on any platform, every cheer for the bidders and buyers, and every comment, RT or Like counts, too, because it raises awareness. Feel free to donate in your own name to any charity of your own choice, too. (Especially when you are resident in the UK, a donation to LOROS via https://margaret-armitage.muchloved.com/Fundraising also has the advantage of gift aid so the government adds 25p for every £1 donated!) Your participation as a watcher who comments, cheers and spreads the word is *equally* valuable to us. The point is to raise money for LOROS – whether as part of this fan-driven fundraiser, or on your own. LOROS or any other charity (and Richard) will be pleased either way 😉.
Watching the bids rise can be a bit of a thrill(er), and following along on Twitter or blog is almost as fun as a community re-watch 😊. I usually try and write updates on the progress of the auctions as we go along – (twice-)daily posts here on-blog, as well as more frequent tweets over on my Twitter. You are welcome to tweet along yourself or to join the crew when the auctions come to a close. I will need help with the live-tweeting because it usually ends in a big frenzy in the end…
So – I hope you will join the fun in whichever way suits you best. More info on what will be on offer will trickle through over the run-up to the fundraiser.