FS, DONT WALK, Oktoberfest… There seem to be countless charity events in St Andrews; and while the biggest, glitziest events may be the most talked about charity schemes in St Andrews, our halls of residence (or at least some of them) have been doing their part for charity year after year. From those £2 Valentines sold in front of dining halls to bungee jumping trips and escape rooms, the ten halls of residence in St Andrews have been steadily competing for the winner of the Hall Champions League.
And the results are in! Or at least a third of them are… the results for the charity portion of the hall champion’s league were posted on the League’s Facebook page on Sunday. The results for Semester 1 showed that there was a large disparity between totals: Albany Park, the winner, raised a total of £1,029.33 during first semester, while DRA raised a meagre £7.
The smallest hall, St Regulus, raised £840, taking second place. Regs was followed by McIntosh with £435, St Salvators with £233, John Burnett with £220, and Dean’s Court with £200. The final positions were taken by University Hall with £183, Andrew Melville with £161 and finally Agnes Blackadder with £61.
So why did St Andrews’ largest hall, consisting of almost 1500 students, raise so little, while its budget counterpart of just 300 students overtook them by miles?
Albany Park was definitely happy with the outcome. Their representative, Jordan Rycraft, remarked, “It’s fantastic to see Albany continuing its successful endeavorus in charitable giving.” Jordan also mentioned some of Albany Park’s fundraising techniques, which included, “pub quizzes, tote bag sales, text a toastie events, food events, and a trip to the Christmas markets, to name but a few.” There is no doubt that such a wide range of events helped keep attendees interested throughout the semester.
Clearly Albany Park is an example of how the Union’s Charities Campaign would like halls to participate in their charity competition. DRA is perhaps an example of how to not participate. DRA’s grand total of £7 indicated that there was little, if any, fundraising going on in the western outskirts of town.
Although DRA did not excel in this particular charity programme, residents of the hall were adamant that they do indeed support charities. All of the proceeds from the recent DRAFP Ball, for example, are going to the Charities Campaign.
Perhaps the size of a hall like DRA makes it difficult to incite interest in small fundraising activities, but easier for large events due to the sheer number of student participation – hence the importance placed on one ball rather than various, smaller schemes.
As for the popular opinion regarding this friendly intra-hall competition, students from various halls have showed little interest in the matter: The competition’s Facebook page barely has 200 likes. This could be from a genuine lack of interest or just a lack of knowledge about the Charities Campaign. If this lack of interest and knowledge is remedied, however, this June we will hopefully see even bigger numbers on the results sheet.
Together, the halls managed to raise £3,300 for the Charities Campaign’s chosen charities: Women for Women (International Charity), Anthony Nolan (National Charity) and Frontline Fife (Local Charity). Despite the disparities in the amounts raised by various halls, as a whole, the St Andrews halls are run by enthusiastic committee members with a desire to help the less fortunate; both at home and abroad.