FundraisingBox use case

Charity despite Corona

How the National Center for Tumor Diseases (NCT) Heidelberg succeeded with a virtual run

Participant card for the virtual NCT run on Google supported by the fundraising box

The NCT Heidelberg is a joint institution of the German Cancer Research Center, Heidelberg University Hospital and German Cancer Aid. The center aims to transfer promising approaches and findings from cancer research directly into the clinic so that they can rapidly benefit patients.

The heart of the NCT Heidelberg is the Tumor Outpatient Clinic, where patients are treated by interdisciplinary expert panels according to individual therapy plans. There has also been a partner site in Dresden since 2015 and the Hopp Children's Tumor Center KiTZ, with which the NCT Heidelberg has been working closely, since 2017.

The NCT run: major event against cancer

The NCT Run has been held annually since 2012 and has become the largest charity run in the Heidelberg metropolitan region. Its core element is the lap course, which is not about best times. Instead, the focus is on patients, relatives, former patients, children and even dogs with their owners "hitting the road" together.

In addition to raising funds, the run also aims to create awareness for the topic of cancer and prevention. Together, around 10,000 people set an example against the insidious disease every year on the grounds of the Institute for Sports and Sports Science at Heidelberg University and at the Olympic Training Center.

However, preparations for the NCT Run were abruptly interrupted in the spring of 2020: The COVID19 pandemic made the event impossible. However, a complete cancellation was not an option for the NCT team. A new idea was needed, and it became a huge success: the virtual run "NCT-LAUFend gegen Krebs: Alleine. Together!".

Worldwide – alone – together – setting signs

The virtual run took place from June 26 - 28. Thanks to the digital project format, participants all over the world were able to join in. The NCT Heidelberg called on people to run alone or in small groups according to the corona guidelines and to send messages, photos and videos and post them on social media with the hashtag #nctlauf.

At this point, many participants had already paid their entry fees, which now had to be reversed. Around 70% donated this amount to the NCT Heidelberg, the remaining 30% was quickly and easily transferred back with the help of the FundraisingBox and Race Result AG. The NCT contact persons of our support team were immediately on hand for this, helped with technical questions and passed on tips and knowledge. The easy import and export of Excel files to and from the FundraisingBox also made the NCT team's work easier.

Combined online measures that led to success

One of the biggest challenges, however, was to digitally mobilize the global running community. To motivate as many people as possible, companies, hospitals, universities and organizations worldwide were contacted. Registered runners were kept up to date via a newsletter. As an incentive to share photos and videos, 25 runner packages were also raffled off.

To give participants the most authentic NCT run experience possible, a toolbox was designed for the run. There, runners found bibs to print out, print templates for running shirts and posters, and even a matching playlist.

The highlight was the specially created location map, which was continuously updated and illustrated the international character of the virtual NCT run. It was clicked on particularly often and gave not only the participants and the team from the NCT Heidelberg, but also us goose bumps:

Participant card of the NCT donation run on Google

People around the world participated in the NCT run

The virtual run was continuously accompanied by various online measures. For example, the NCT Heidelberg website features a symbolic finish for participants...

... and a gallery of photographs. People posted continuously in social media about it and also called for additional interaction. With their contributions, numerous participants took part and thus created a sense of community in line with this year's motto "NCT running against camcer: Alone. Together!".

Social media posts strengthen the sense of community

Numerous posts on social media created a special sense of community.

Fully exploited: the potential of digital fundraising

A total of 9,000 runners took part in the virtual event - including even the overwinterers from Neumeyer III Station in Antarctica!

Social media posts strengthen the sense of community

Numerous posts on social media created a special sense of community.

The goal of 40,000 km was far exceeded: Around 120,000 km were run against cancer. Of course, our fundraising tool was also used for this project: 44 fundraising campaigns were launched. Together with corporate partner SAP, which supported every kilometer run with a donation, more than € 75,000 in donations were collected for the NCT Heidelberg!

If you think this is where the project ends, you're in for a surprise: The NCT Heidelberg's virtual running event is also featured in the book Heidelberg Heroes 2020, which is dedicated to those people who were particularly involved in the corona crisis. Here you will find interviews, photos, greetings and scientific guest contributions. The proceeds from the sale will benefit charitable and social institutions in Heidelberg.

Book Heidelberg Heroes

The virtual benefit event is also portrayed in the book Heidelberg Heroes 2020.

A major 10-year anniversary event is planned for 2021. In addition, a virtual run should take place again. Because it also enables people to take part who, due to their belonging to a risk group, could never take part in a run with many others.

Defying the Corona Crisis with Creative Digital Fundraising Ideas

This example from the NCT Heidelberg shows how organizations and associations can use digital fundraising and creative ideas to make their work crisis-proof. Even more: it shows that "digital" opens up completely new possibilities and is a great addition to other fundraising channels.

We think that the NCT Heidelberg has done a remarkable job with this project. It combined numerous online measures in different ways and thus reached an incredible number of people. Our products accompanied the project and provided the "technical underpinning" for the many online donations. We are thrilled and happy to be a part of the important work of the NCT Heidelberg!

NCT Heidelberg:
Book "Heidelberg Heroes 2020":

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