Keeping our supporters safe when promoting fundraising events

Fundraising at Beat  

Beat is a charity and relies on donations from the public to run our services for people affected by eating disorders. There are lots of different ways people can fundraise for Beat including exercise related activities, crafts, awareness raising, fun nights, sharing stories, treks and skydives. Donations from supporter fundraising challenges and activities are a core part of our income which enables our work. Whenever somebody is raising money for Beat their wellbeing is always our main priority above any fundraising activity.  

Exercise-related fundraising 

A large number of popular charity fundraising activities are exercise related and, like other charities, Beat promotes and holds places in many of these. However, we are very mindful of the duty of care we have for our supporters, some of whom may have a negative relationship with exercise. 

We have taken advice from senior eating disorder clinicians, and their view is that helping people to see sports and exercise in a healthy, positive way is an important part of recovery.  

We work closely with our fundraisers to support them to choose a fundraising activity that is appropriate for them, and we raise concerns and offer alternatives if there are signs that someone’s plans are inappropriate. If necessary, we will not accept donations from a supporter taking part in an activity that we believe will put unnecessary risk on their health and wellbeing.  

For our charity bond places in sporting events, we have a thorough application process which we believe enables us to support fundraisers in choosing the right event for them. For other exercise-related activities, we ask all our fundraisers to follow our Fundraising Guidelines

Fundraising Guidelines 

Our fundraising guidelines help ensure fundraising is suitable, legal, and safe for everyone involved. They state that, before fundraising, anyone who is suffering from an eating disorder should: 

  • Ask their friends and family for advice and support choosing the right activity  
  • Tell their doctor about their fundraising plans and discuss how they may impact their recovery 
  • Avoid setting goals or targets that could be pressurising or unhealthy 
  • Consider whether they are ready to talk about their experience 

And in the case of exercise-related fundraising we strongly discourage anyone who has experienced an unhealthy relationship with exercise from considering one of these activities.  

There are lots of ways supporters can fundraise for us and we always endeavour to help people find the activity that is right for them depending on their unique circumstances and interests.  

We understand that there can be a negative relationship between eating disorders and over exercise and we encourage our supporters to understand that they have a responsibility to represent that a positive and healthy relationship with exercise can be achieved, without negatively impacting upon physical and mental health. However, if we were to discourage all exercise-related activities, we could be equally sending an unhelpful message about the role of exercise in people’s everyday lives. 

Marketing of fundraising activities 

We market a wide range of fundraising activities across social media, our website and in emails. Unfortunately, it is not possible to distinguish who certain activities may or may not be appropriate for among Beat supporters, followers, and the general public. Wherever technically possible, we try to communicate who the intended audience is within the piece of media, however what is possible is determined by the format and sometimes limited. On the webpage for each fundraising activity and in communications to anyone who signs up, we take care to highlight our Fundraising Guidelines and emphasis that everyone’s health and wellbeing must come first.  

Feedback 

We are committed to providing our supporters and beneficiaries with the best possible support so welcome any feedback on how we can improve.  

If you have any questions or feedback about our fundraising and marketing, please contact fundraising@beateatingdisorders.org.uk.  

Any complaints about our fundraising processes should be emailed to complaints@beateatingdisorders.org.uk.