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Articles > Customer Showcases > John Lyon creates COVID-19 hardship fund & raises £7,500 in one month

John Lyon creates COVID-19 hardship fund & raises £7,500 in one month

John Lyon's fantastic fundraising efforts have raised £36,000 for a new COVID-19 relief fund to support its pupils who have been financially impacted by the pandemic. Find out how they did it here.
John Lyon School, Harrow on the Hill
John Lyon School, Harrow on the Hill

Alumni community supports pupils to continue their education

John Lyon is a leading independent school in Harrow on the Hill, England, which has been utilising their strong alumni community to raise thousands of pounds for both current pupils and local charities who have struggled as a result of COVID-19. 


John Lyon have been supporting their community through a specific COVID-19 relief fund to help students from lower income families through significant financial hardship as a result of the global pandemic. They reached out to their Old Lyonian Association through a personal email from the Head, encouraging members of the alumni community to come together and support those in need and received a fantastic response. 

"It was a great way to enable people to donate, we have raised over £36,000 as a direct result of the email." Suzannah Chirnside, Alumni Relations Coordinator

In an enormous display of generosity, the fund raised £7500 in just one month, providing much needed support to enable pupils who may have otherwise been forced to reconsider their position at the school to continue their education uninterrupted. Donations have continued to pour in from Old Lyonians who were highly engaged with their alma mater and wanted to help both through financial aid and in any other way possible, and the total for the relief fund has now topped £36,000, with £7,750 donated directly through their ToucanTech platform. 

Head’s appeal for support works wonders

Head of John Lyon, Katherine Haynes, appealed directly to Old Lyonians through an email which launched the fund on May 1st. They tailored the email with the recipient's first name and included a direct link to donate. This message was also posted as an update on the alumni community site, which received 255 views. 


John Lyon tracked the engagement for each of the 782 recipients and reported a fantastic 75% open rate and a 10.5% click through rate. Through their tracking, they could then retarget recipients who did not open the original email to maximise the efficiency of their communications whilst minimising the potential for repeated contact. 

Creative fundraising raises thousands

During these tough times, the hardship fund has not been the only way that past and present Lynonians have supported their community. They also participated in their version of the 2.6 challenge, completing a project based on the School’s value of Community. Pupils raised £2224 by running 2.6 kilometres, baking 26 cupcakes, or having a 26 minute phone call with a vulnerable member of their community. 


Additionally, John Lyon used their online shop to sell copies of John Lyon’s Dream, the authorised history of their school. All proceeds raised were donated to a local charity, London North West Healthcare Charity, which is supporting hospital staff at Northwick Park hospital. 


These creative ways to fundraise have gone a long way to provide multiple causes with much-needed funds, and engaged current students in the spirit of helping their wider community. It has also shown the value that John Lyon receives from their highly engaged alumni community. It is exciting to see a community come together for different causes close to many alumni hearts, and John Lyon has set a wonderful example by providing their students with innovative ways to support their local community. 


See how you can support your students and community during this time by tracking fundraising to meet your goals and sharing your appeal to a wide audience in a personalised way through ToucanTech. To find out more, get in touch via email or read on for advice on personalising your fundraising to incite support.

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