Crowdfunding boost for York projects

The UK’s first bespoke university crowdfunding platform YuStart has brought success for three projects at the University of York

The York Astrocampus development has raised more than £7,000, The 24 choir nearly £1,200, and a student film production £105. All three projects exceeded their minimum funding targets.

YuStart allows members of the University to raise money from multiple donors, with participants receiving a reward, such as a t-shirt, project poster or an invitation to attend an event, in exchange for a small donation.

Launched in January, YuStart is a joint initiative between the University’s Development Office and the University of York Students’ Union (YUSU), which uses the expertise of education specialist Hubbub.

A fourth project is currently raising funds towards the publication costs of a student society anthology of creative writing, The Looking Glass Anthology.

Susie Fothergill, Head of Development and Alumni Relations, said: “YuStart is proving a fantastic way of enabling the University to involve friends, family and alumni in funding innovative ideas and projects from clubs, societies, volunteering projects and departments through the power of social media.” 

Kallum Taylor, YUSU President, added: ‘With so many different interests and groups all competing for limited resources within our institution, YuStart has provided an excellent and innovative avenue for them to open new opportunities in making their dreams become a reality. Aside from the financial benefits too, it’s yet another promising connection to friends and alumni of our University in establishing a fulfilling and valuable two way relationship.’

Created by the Department of Physics with support from the Ogden Trust, York’s Astrocampus provides a unique venue for schoolchildren and space enthusiasts to study and enjoy our Universe. Built around the University’s Observatory, it offers regular public evening openings staffed by a team of student volunteers.

The YuStart funding will allow the site and a new outreach activity centre to be equipped to the highest standards, making a visit to the York Astrocampus an ‘out of this world’ experience.

The 24 is a student vocal ensemble based at the University of York. The funding will allow the choir to make the most of their 17-day tour of China and Hong Kong under eminent conductor Zhu Bu Xi.

Student filmmakers creating the short film Psyched, used the crowdfunding platform to raise extra money towards the costs of locations, props and specialist equipment.

Projects fundraising through YuStart have access to specialist support from Hubbub and benefit from the support of YuStart Ambassador Liza Parker.  Working with the Development Office team, Liza, an undergraduate student in the University’s School of Politics, Economics and Philosophy (PEP), provides advice on website content and running effective social media campaigns.

Image credit: Design by Mode

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