Some 80 people with sight problems will be helped throughout this year thanks to the fundraising work of unique students.
Bognor Regis-based 4Sight Vision Support has received £7,820 from members of the world’s only undergraduate degree programme in fundraising at University of Chichester, pictured above.
It costs the charity, in Victoria Drive, an average of £95 a month to look after each of its more than 2,000 members. About 4,000 people from around West Sussex seek its help a year.
The money came from four sell-out shows of Copacabanca at the 350-seat Regis Centre which the students staged with performing arts students at the university and other activities. They hope to take the final total to £20,000 if several applications for grants are successful.
University programme leader for charity development Donna Day Lafferty said: “The students spend the first year of the course learning about the theory of fundraising. In the second year, they put the theory into practice. It’s really important that they can put what they have learned into a real life situation.”
Charity donations in general had still not recovered from the 2008/09 recession and government cutbacks had seen the voluntary sector take on more and more work, she said.
Olivia Bombardini, 21, one of the fundraising students, said: “I’m really, really happy with our donation. It’s a massive achievement.
“We put a lot of hard work into our fundraising and we had some stressful times but it has worked out to a really good result. It’s been good to work with a charity and put our lessons into practice.”
4Sight Vision Support’s marketing and communications officer, Jessica Benson, said: “This is an incredible amount of money and it is going to make a huge difference to us. It will fund a variety of things from low vision sessions to social activities.”