Comic Relief is a major charity based in the UK which strives to create a just world free from poverty – and we work 365 days a year to help that vision become a reality. Our mission is to drive positive change through the power of entertainment. Since we first set up shop 25 years ago, we’ve been doing three main things…
• We raise millions of pounds through two big fundraising campaigns – Red Nose Day and Sport Relief.
• We spend that money in the best possible way to tackle the root causes of poverty and social injustice.
• We use the power of our brand to raise awareness of the issues that we care most about.
Over the years we’ve inspired a lot of people who don’t normally ‘do’ charity to, well, do charity. The support we’ve had from so many friends has always blown us away – and still does today.
How it all began
Comic Relief was launched from a refugee camp in Sudan on Christmas Day in 1985, live on BBC One. At that time, a devastating famine was crippling Ethiopia and something had to be done. That something was Comic Relief. The idea was simple – Comic Relief would get a whole bunch of much-loved British comedians to make the public laugh while they raised money to help people in desperate need. As well as doing something about the very real and direct emergency in Ethiopia, Comic Relief was determined to help tackle the broader needs of poor and disadvantaged people in Africa and at home in the UK.
Next: Red Nose Day arrives
It all began with a few live events and, before too long, Red Nose Day was created. The first ever Red Nose Day in 1988 took the nation by storm – bringing together comedy and charity like never before on live national TV. It raised a staggering £15m. The eleven Red Nose Days that have followed since have raised more than £459m. That money has helped, and is helping, to support people and communities in dire need both in the UK and Africa.
Next: Sport Relief kicks off
In December 2001, Comic Relief launched a second major fundraising campaign – Sport Relief – which takes place in alternate years with Red Nose Day. The idea is that everyone gets active, raises cash and helps to change lives. At the heart of the Sport Relief campaign sits the Sainsbury’s Sport Relief Mile where men, women and kids across the land take to the streets to complete 1, 3 or 6 miles – all to fundraise and make a big difference at home and abroad. Comic Relief spends the money raised to make a difference to the lives of poor and disadvantaged people in the UK and across the world’s poorest countries.
Next: Others we’ve helped to help others
As we’ve grown over the years we’ve also lent a touch of expertise here and a bit of clout there to other organisations who are also working hard to helptransform the lives of disadvantaged people across the world. Comic Relief has been instrumental in many projects and campaigns from Make Poverty History and Live8 to America Gives Back and the United Against Malaria coalition.
Next: What we’ve raised and how it’s helped
Since 1985, Comic Relief has raised over £650 million to tackle poverty and social injustice across the UK, Africa and some of the world’s poorest countries. It’s thanks to the public’s amazing fundraising for Red Nose Day and Sport Relief, as well astounding support from our friends and partners, that we’ve been able to do this. Over the years, our cash in Africa has educated people about HIV and AIDS and taught women to read. It has helped street children from Bangladesh to Brazil and supported communities affected by terrible conflict and natural disasters. Across the UK it has helped disabled people challenge discrimination, provided escapes routes for women living with domestic violence and done much more. And this is just for starters.
Red Nose Day
We think it’s fair to say that Red Nose Day has become something of a national institution since its launch in 1988.
What is Red Nose Day
The idea is pretty simple – everyone has a laugh whilst raising money to help change countless lives across the UK and Africa. Every two years, thousands of people do something funny for money. They do it at home, at work, in schools and, well, just about everywhere. They even do it on TV, with the BBC giving celebrities and comedians an entire evening to entertain the nation whilst urging them to donate generously. In 2009, more than £82 million was raised to transform lives. It just goes to show what a difference a Red Nose Day can make.
The comic relief campaign is a fantastic campaign, it’s only UK based but it is extremely well known in the celeb world. That is one of the main things that i love about the comic relief campaign, they have everyone involved. The simplicity of their logo is great and its something i would like to accomplish with my own logo. But the one thing that has really caught my attention is the ‘RED NOSE’ it’s a small plain and simple symbol/object that represents the whole campaign. I like the idea of being fit to hand out a symbol to the public, it’s not only free advertising but its is giving something back to the public and saying thank you for you help. I would like to have something like this.