Real-life MMD: Should I cut back so I can sponsor a marathon run?



  • I have a rule that I won't sponsor someone to do the same thing twice. If it's a new challenge, and I can afford to, then I'll gladly sponsor them for it, but when they do the same thing again the next year I very rarely sponsor them a second time, unless perhaps it's a charity I'd be giving money to anyway.

    I have friends who've been doing the Race for Life for the past seven years or so and who ask me for sponsorship every single year. I haven't sponsored them since the first time and we're still friends, so I'm sure they understand.

    Similarly, I've only ever asked for sponsorship when I'm doing something that really is a challenge and isn't something I would just do for fun anyway. Otherwise, as someone else has already said, it's just asking someone to sponsor your hobby.

    And don't even get me started on people who want sponsorship to go on holiday! I've seen people get stroppy because someone won't sponsor them to go and trek the Great Wall of China or whatever, which just seems rather cheeky to me.
  • Cinders2001
    Cinders2001 Posts: 1,454 Forumite
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    Instead of a £1 a mile or whatever it is, give a set amount like £5 or £10 full stop.

    Or you could offer help during the sponsor rather than a monetary help.

    Or, as he is family, i'm sure he would understand if he was quietly spoken to about your situation. He/she's probably quite unaware of the predicament you are in, and would understand if he/she only knew.

    Hard though it may be, a quick swallow of the pride and respectfully tell-all may just be the best thing.

    Hope all goes well whatever you decide.
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  • crogers
    crogers Posts: 16 Forumite
    Still sponsor, but reduce the amount. That way you will feel good, not guilty and i'm sure that your relative will understand in the present climate why you have had to do this. Good luck:)
  • Fujiko
    Fujiko Posts: 150 Forumite
    I sympathise with this dilemma because it is hard to say no to a friend and/or neighbour, and particularly so when you are asked to sponsor a child. My solution is never to pay by the mile or whatever but to donate a set amount depending on how sympathetic I feel towards the particular charity. I do find it embarrassing to be presented with the sponsorship form showing pledges of anything up to £10 a mile which does almost amount to moral blackmail!
  • pollypenny
    pollypenny Posts: 29,393 Forumite
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    Most people I know just give a set amount anyway.

    I'd be honest and tell your relative that you are hard up.
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  • Jo09
    Jo09 Posts: 12 Forumite
    You should sponsor what you want to and can afford. You shouldn't feel obliged if you cannot afford to do it. Your family member should understand and may be upset if they knew the hardship you were going through.
  • Just give him a fiver if you can afford it, or whatever you can afford - a couple of quid is better than nothing - but remember, it's not him personally you're giving money to, it's the charity. Explain that you don't want to not sponsor him, but you really can't afford any more than that (whatever it is).
  • No, let's get this right - your relative isn't running for charity, he/she is running purely because they want to and for their own sense of achievement. Charity runs are fine, but those taking part haven't really done anything special, and they have become an easy way to raise money by striking at people's consciences. Does your relative pledge, say, £20 for every mile run? I somehow doubt it, so why should you pledge anything at all?

    It would be different if sponsorship was sought for, say, redecorating elderly people's homes, or dug their gardens or cleared their rubbish to the local tip, as something positive is done to earn it. But running for personal pleasure - no!
  • 19lottie82
    19lottie82 Posts: 6,027 Forumite
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    I have ran a few 10ks for a charity that is very close to my heart and most people know why it is close to my heart.

    I appreciated ANY donation, including one for £3 from one of my mates who is a student, living in London (hence he has very little spare cash).

    When you talk about "cutting back" to make a donation, I get the feeling that you think you are expected to donate a substantial amount? I'm sure your relative would appreciate any donation.

    BUT that's only if you want to. No one should force you to donate, and shouldn't feel guilty if you don't.
  • 19lottie82
    19lottie82 Posts: 6,027 Forumite
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    your relative isn't running for charity, he/she is running purely because they want to and for their own sense of achievement

    Not necessarily true. As described in my post above, I have ran a couple of 10ks to raise money for a charity that have helped my family enourmously and do a great job despite receiving no goverment funding.

    Sure I got a nice personal buzz from running the 10k and completing it but thi charity needs extra funds so it can help other people and I wanted to help.
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