Interview with a Doer: Kirsty

Featured imageKirsty Schneeberger is somewhat of a legend in the environmental space, having helped to create a loud and clear voice in the world of international climate negotiations through UKYCC and her powerful Think2050 campaign. She’s now policy advisor at Stakeholder Forum.

So we were pretty honoured when she decided to use The DoNation to raise sponsorship for running the Royal Parks Foundation Half Marathon earlier in the month.

Despite only setting up her page days before the race, she not only managed to raise a whopping 4,568 kgCO2 (the equivalent to driving about 6,400 miles or to having a 40-day long shower), but she also raised a healthy £340 for WWF in parallel. A nice example of how raising money and action can work well together.

Here she answers a few questions about the whole experience. Read on for a good dose of inspiration…

How did the half marathon go?

The race was amazing.  Low was around mile 11 when I saw quite a few people faint with exhaustion – always a tricky thing to run past.

But the high was knowing how much people had pledged to do to save carbon.  In particular three sponsors who pledged not to fly.

(what she’s not shouting about is that she did it it ian impressive 1 hr 56 mins!)

Why did you decide to raise sponsorship through The DoNation?

Because I think that the approach offers a brilliant way of engaging a range of people on the issue about saving CO2 without it being too confronting or judgemental.  It provided a vehicle for me to communicate my concerns and aspirations related to CO2 in a way that others could understand.

It also motivated me more to train than the thought of raising money.

How did your friends respond to your request?

Very well – they loved that it was a novel idea and that they could support me.  Some classic responses that I got included:

“Thanks Kirst, I really care about climate change issues and want to know that I am able to do my bit, so this gave me the incentive to do that”

And:

“Great to have an alternative to sponsoring in money when times are really difficult financially”

How did it make you feel?

It totally spurred me on.  Gave me more of an emotional responsibility to keep up the training and run the race.  Some pledges were really personal and huge i.e. two friends saying they wouldn’t fly home to see their parents for Christmas.  Felt like a big responsibility to match their effort and sacrifice.

Are there any top tips you’d share with someone else raising sponsorship?

Start a lot earlier than I did!

Any other thoughts you’d like to share?

I think this is such a brilliant initiative and I look forward to supporting it again in the future.  Thank you for offering an alternative for real action.  The DoNation encourages people to take responsibility rather than outsourcing it to a charity.

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