Spotlight On: #wirralhospice #lottery; a chance to win, a way to care… EVERY WEEK #hospicelottery #inittowinit #lotterywinner #charity #wirral #wirralhospice

Lottery ballsOn the 2nd Jan, 1998, the Spice Girls were topping the charts with their famous ballad, Too Much. It was the same day as Wirral Hospice St John’s ran our first lottery draw. The first £2,000 jackpot winner certainly didn’t think it was ‘too much’ and many more people since, can only agree.

Today, our hospice lottery has grown to around 12,500 players every week making a massive contribution to the essential specialist palliative care and support services our charity provides for the people of Wirral.

Wirral Hospice’s lottery is a fun way to get involved and to have a chance of winning a decent cash prize. However, many people will say that they’re NOT in it to win it and see it very much as a way of showing their support. It’s all above board as we’re regulated by the Gambling Commission and we always ask people to gamble responsibly.

For just £1 each week (£4.34 a month), a member will be issued with a unique five figure number which is then entered into our random electronic draw every Friday. Once the numbers have run, we contact the big winners by phone and then have to ensure all the cheques are sent out to the lucky lottery prize winners.

Carl, our Lottery Manager: “The best job of the week is calling up the first prize winner and letting them know that they’ve won £2,000! I’ve had tears and laughter with the winners, and I’ve also had the odd expletive from a couple of people who didn’t believe me!”

27.07.18Wirral Hospice’s top lottery prize is very nice at £2,000, but often the second prize is even bigger. In fact the £500 second prize, can ‘rollover’ up to a maximum of £10,000!

The explanation for this is that the random number generator can stop on any one of 100,000 numbers (00000 to 99999) for each prize. The machine keeps going until it finds an actual player’s number for the £2,000 and every other of the total of 34 prizes, except for the second prize.

If the number it falls on for the second prize is NOT any of our player’s numbers – it rolls over by £500 a week. It can be won at any multiple of £500 as it rolls but, at 20 weeks, the machine is set so that the 2nd prize must be won if it hasn’t been before then.

It is fantastic when anyone wins but it is especially gratifying when a long term member’s number comes up for one of the big prizes! Our most recent £10,000 winner was a lady from Rock Ferry who had been a member of our lottery, for all of its 20 years.

“That was particularly heart-warming” says Carl, “the lady was surprised, shocked and delighted, all at the same time. It was a great call to make”.

Carl’s team of dedicated lottery staff and volunteers consists of 2 x part-time  administrators, 3 x canvassers, 3 x collectors and a further small number of invaluable volunteers who, variously, sell single tickets, send out winning cheques, post reminder/new members’ letters and also do some community subscriptions collecting.

In its early days, the Wirral Hospice St John’s lottery was very much a ‘cash collection’ operation – people signed up and committed to paying £4.00 every four weeks. The legacy is that we continue to collect cash from a significant number of people around the Wirral. For many, especially older people, it is the only way they will play. A friendly face every four weeks is something they look forward to. Rachel, Ian and Tracy are our cheery collectors.

Also out and about in all weathers our canvassers, Frank, Nigel and Kevin, are knocking on doors! They are assigned an area and off they go. We know there is a lot of competition for people’s charity pound(s) these days. Despite the challenges of ‘cold -calling’, many people do sign-up on the doorstep or, in the small businesses we sometimes call on. It’s a great way for people to get involved and demonstrate the goodwill they feel towards the hospice.

The canvassers will tell you that 99% of people are very polite. Sometimes the strategy is to warm people up with a lottery branded leaflet to let them know that they’ll be getting a knock soon. Sometimes they’ll just knock and win people over immediately with a mix of charm and gentle persuasion. Wirral Hospice St John’s is certainly ‘worth it’ to them.

Nowadays, many people will make a card payment or commit to a standing order. As a nod towards the electronic age people can also sign up at our website. Some traditionalists still like to use their trusty cheque-books!

Our administrators, Kate and Laura, are busy every day (they share the hours) answering queries from new and existing players, while processing the quarterly, half yearly or annual payments of existing members. They also make sure all the weekly single ticket numbers are entered into the draw. When they’ve balanced the books, by Thursday pm, double-checked by Carl on a Friday morning, the draw is ready to roll!

Like every other part of the hospice, the lottery team is complemented by the commitment and support of our wonderful volunteers. There are up to 20 people who collect monies in their own communities and we are eternally grateful to them.

We reserve a special thanks to Margie Freeman, our dynamic fundraising volunteer . She’s a frequent visitor to the Carr Farm Garden Centre, as well as other places and events on our behalf, selling hundreds of single lottery tickets.

Very special mentions must also include, our most recently retired (after 20 years), former canvassing/collecting stalwart, Irene Howard, and our previous, ultra-efficient, administrator, Debbie Pierce (also with us for 19 years!).

wirral hospice go yellow 2017 12 pat lorna

Pat and Lorna (right) in one of many poses for our social media activities!

And last, but definitely not least, is hospice volunteer Lorna. Every Friday as she enters the fundraising office there is a  loud, welcoming cheer. She’s 92 years young and is still helping as a volunteer, to pack and post large numbers of lottery letters every week. If you’ve ever received a winners’ cheque in the last 14 years, chances are that Lorna packed it into the envelope with love to you.

Finally, this week’s lottery rollover is a fantastic £4,500! We came in mentioning the Spice Girls and Too Much, but I think we might all prefer the Luther Vandross hit, Never Too Much!

Author: Billy Howard

Advertisements

As good as her word, Margie Freeman #hospiceheroes

Pictured: Margie preparing goody bags for What Women Want 2013

Pictured: Margie preparing goody bags for What Women Want 2013

‘When you’ve got time, try and put a little bit back’ – a motto fundraising volunteer Margie Freeman lives by.

Between looking after grandchildren, gardening and cruising around the world it’s hard to see how she has any time to ‘put a little bit back’ let alone the four days a week she dedicates to the Hospice.  A Hospice volunteer for seven years, she now volunteers at two Hospice charity shops (which she has been with since they opened), the Fundraising Office, the Hospice Gift Shop, the Hospice lottery team, not to mention tonnes of events throughout the year – she must have a time machine!

When asked about all her volunteering, Margie just shrugs and says she likes to be busy and that she can think of nowhere better than Wirral Hospice St John’s to give something back.

There’s not much else you need to know, always there when you need her – Margie Freeman, hospice hero.

 

 Author: Jacinta Warwick

Everything you need to know about our #lottery

wirral_hospice_ian_jones_lottery_managerEvery week 12,800 people support  Wirral Hospice St John’s by taking part in our  lottery.

With more and more people engaging with the Hospice and the lottery, we receive many questions about it.  Today I took the some of the most frequently asked questions to the man in the know – Ian Jones, Lottery Manager.

So Ian, thanks for taking the time to answer some questions.  Firstly I find that people often wonder how £1 per week helps the Hospice, can you tell our readers how lottery membership helps the Hospice?

Well, £1 may not seem like a lot, however it helps provide the equivalent of 10 specialist nurses at the Hospice, allowing for patients to receive the care and support that they need during their time with us – £1 goes a long way!

 How can people join Wirral Hospice’s lottery?

It’s really easy, all you need to do is call the lottery team on 0151 343 0348, or visit our website and download an application form.  We also have lottery staff on hand at many local events and daily within the community who will be able to sign you up!

 Once someone has become a member what happens then?

Once you have paid your £1 weekly membership you will receive a letter with your numbers on, you can check the weekly draw numbers on the Hospice’s website, on facebook, in our charity shops, in all Asda Wirral branches and all Wirral libraries, you can also call the lottery team on 0151 334 0348 and a member of the team will be able to tell you the numbers.  

I sometimes hear from people that they have been in the lottery for a while and haven’t won yet – what do you say to those who are yet to be lucky winners?

Since the lottery started, over 35,000 local residents have won a prize, 700 local residents have also won our weekly top prize of £2,000.  You might be interested to know that the odds of winning the Hospice lottery are higher than that of the National lottery and our tickets are half the price at only £1!

That sounds like a lot of winners over the years, what prizes can players win?

Each week players have the opportunity to win one of 34 prizes:

  • 1st prize £2,000
  • 2nd prize £500 (if not won, can roll over up to a max. of £10,000)
  • 3rd prize £100
  • 4th prize £50
  • 5 x £20 prizes
  • 25 x £10 prizes

This week’s rollover is already up to £2,500!

 So, when I win, how do I claim my lovely prize?

When you win you won’t need to claim your prize – all winners are sent their cheque by 1st class post each Friday after the draw has been run.

 Any final fun facts to tell our readers?

Well, over the years we have had three winners who have won the £10,000 rollover, with many others winning various rollover amounts.  Surprisingly, the first ever rollover winner won on Friday 13th!  On one occasion a lady won the top prize of £2,000, this meant that she was able to buy a stair lift ensuring that she was able to remain in her own home; in her case winning changed her life! Finally, as a rule most people support our Hospice lottery because of the cause it supports – prizes are just an extra bonus.

The lottery is a fun and exciting way to support the Hospice, I know I’m keeping my fingers crossed for a win!

Author: Jacinta Warwick

Why I love being a #lottery canvasser for the Hospice

Left to right: Julia and Irene selling lottery tickets at our Light Up A Life event

Left to right: Julia and Irene selling lottery tickets at our Light Up A Life event

Julia has been one of Wirral Hospice St John’s lottery canvassing team for over four years and is seen regularly at venues and on doorsteps across the Wirral.

“Being a lottery canvasser is never dull and the variety of people and venues I visit are extremely welcoming and rewarding. In my role, I regularly speak to people who have experience of the Hospice and their comments are really motivating.

My role is to bring on board new members for the Hospice’s weekly lottery – a major source of income for the Hospice. Being part of the team that helps to fund the equivalent cost of 10 nurses makes me feel my lottery canvassing role is making a significant contribution to the Hospice’s incredible work.”

If you like to be out and about, enjoy speaking to people and have enthusiasm, energy, an outgoing personality and a sense of humour then come and join our team!

Download an application pack or call Ian Jones, our Lottery Manager, on 0151 334 0348 for an informal discussion about the role.

%d bloggers like this: