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Out of the Blue

May 27, 2016 | Nick Taylor

Computers were rolled out to schools the year after I left, says Tracy Holland, one of the team members at the Tim Parry Johnathan Ball Foundation for Peace, so I haven’t grown up with the whole hyper/cyber/whatever-you-want–to-call-it-space thingy. The internet came out of the blue, and even those with the keenest foresight couldn’t possibly have envisaged the acres of vast warehouses of worms it would open up. It has irrevocably changed our world and continues to have a huge impact on how we live our lives. It’s a mixed blessing; I don’t think anyone can argue with that.  

Technology brings us news as it happens and we can respond almost instantly. Here at the Tim Parry Johnathan Ball Foundation for Peace it enables us to contact victims in milliseconds through our Survivors Assistance Network. It allows us to tailor our programmes precisely to have maximum impact on each individual audience and to deliver them throughout the country with the help of our facilitators. We are a small team yet through the internet our work can reach the whole world. We all achieve so much more in the twenty-first century than we could in the past and at a fraction of the cost. And one of the marvellous things the internet does is it allows people from all over the world to give money to our charity without it costing them a penny.

Like it or not, nowadays money is largely theoretical – it exists in the ether without ever taking the form of notes and coins. Gone are the simple days when money was worth whatever it could buy: I remember being told a country can only produce currency to the value of the gold it owns. I’ve no doubt that there’s many a bright young thing sniggering at that comment in these days of quantative easing. Nowadays money can come to charities out of the blue, to the delight of the ‘owner’ and at absolutely no cost to the donor. It’s true – you can give us financial support without it costing you a penny. Please do it.

How does it work?

Many retailers have signed up to EasyFundraising so when you buy from them online a percentage is donated to the charity of your choice. It doesn’t complicate or delay your purchase, and if you use EasySearch we receive a small amount whether you buy anything or not. When you have signed up to EasyFundraising we will receive a donation whenever you buy from one of the participating retailers. If you make your first purchase by accessing EasyFundraising using this link we’ll get an extra £1, and if you give your address we can claim *Gift Aid too.

Please do it – it will cost you nothing. You’ll get the feel good factor too because you can see how much you’ve raised for us every time you go on the internet. It doesn’t increase the price, it’s primarily a marketing tool, and I for one would much rather patronise companies with a social conscience. The seller will claim tax relief on their donations too so it’s win-win.

If you take a few minutes to sign up now it will be ready and waiting for when you book holidays or do your Christmas shopping – every time you search or shop online you will help us to work to prevent another tragedy coming out of the blue.

Please ask your family and friends to sign up too, and if your employer will give permission to install EasySearch, you and your colleagues can raise money for us at work – imagine how much you would help us if the whole company used it.

*To enhance your gift using GiftAid you must be a UK taxpayer. If you pay less Income Tax and/or Capital Gains Tax than the amount of Gift Aid claimed on all your donations during the tax year it is your responsibility to pay any difference.

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