Last month, the European Outdoor Conservation Association (EOCA) ran its first Online Conservation Fundraiser. The money raised is still being counted and collected but the total already stands at over €16,400; 100% of all money raised will be spent on conservation projects
Each year, EOCA hosts a Conservation Fundraiser at the OutDoor by ISPO trade show. This fundraiser raises in excess of €30,000 over the four-day event, thanks to donations of gear from EOCA members which is sold to show visitors. With the 2020 show cancelled, EOCA launched the Online Fundraiser to ensure that it could still fund as many conservation projects as possible.
The Online Conservation Fundraiser allowed people to buy their favourite outdoor gear and make a difference by raising money for vital conservation projects. Adventure.ie, La Sportiva, Pajak Sport, Stanley and Vaude all agreed to donate a percentage of their online sales to EOCA on various dates over the fundraising period; Gregory made a donation from a sample sale.
EOCA also worked with campaign partner and community interest company Outdoor Gear for Good (OGFG), which contributed 100% of its sales over the month to the fundraiser. OGFG sold gear, donated by Berghaus, Cumulus, Keen, Lowe Alpine, Nikwax, Osprey, Proagencies, Ternua and Trangoworld, through its eBay store.
Joint General Manager Catherine Savidge said, “The generosity of EOCA members, particularly at a time when businesses across Europe were being hit by the Covid-19 pandemic, was overwhelming. To be able to raise this amount of money, during our first ever Online Fundraiser, to pass on to projects which are making a real difference to our planet and our climate, demonstrates yet again, the positive things that can be delivered when the industry works together.”
Richard Leedham, founder of OGFG, added “OGFG is a new model, which launched in the spring of 2020 to provide a way for excess stock from the outdoor industry to be used to raise money to give back to the great outdoors. The EOCA Online Conservation Fundraiser enabled us to fast track our growth, offer new items and to raise awareness of what we are doing. We were delighted with the success of the fundraiser and to be able to give back so much to conservation projects via EOCA at a time when conservation is so critical to the survival and health of people and the planet.”
EOCA is an initiative from the European outdoor industry with the objective of protecting the wild areas it cares so passionately about; the European Outdoor Group is the Founder Member of the Association. Funded by membership and other fundraising activities within the outdoor industry, 100% of membership fees go to the support of projects.
From January 2015, a select group of Sustaining Members pledged their support to EOCA by committing to fund the organisation with an extra €10,000 per year over and above their annual membership fee. This money is being used to finance the running of the Association, support its sustainable growth and also enabled a move to two funding rounds per year.