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How a radio show made one fan so angry he’s raised £11,000 (and counting) for charity

Are you familiar with The Archers?

It’s one of the longest running soap operas in Britain, a radio show set in rural Ambridge. While its storylines are often bucolic, it is currently running a story about Helen, who is suffering coercive and physical abuse at the hands of her husband, Rob.

It has led real life sufferers of coercive abuse such as Helen Walmsley-Johnson to write about her experiences.

It also led a fan (and friend of mine), Paul Trueman, to do something about it.

The Helen Titchener (nee Archer) Rescue Fund We’re raising money for Refuge because for every fictional Helen, there are real ones. £11,184Raised so far £15,000Target

Fed up with listening in impotent rage, he decided to set up a charity page on JustGiving.com (https://www.justgiving.com/helentitchener/3). The kicker is that although Helen is fictional, the charity Paul is donating to, Refuge, is real and helps real life victims of domestic abuse.

Paul thought he might raised £1,000 in a week. He raised £6,000 in the first day and is currently at over £11,000, less than 48 hours after starting the campaign.

It’s a marvellous idea of Paul’s, and it ties together old media (the radio, with millions of listeners) with direct communication to people moved by the storyline (the Just Giving page, and its amplification on social media).

It’s even a bit Curve-like, because Paul has joined all the dots. The audience was found using free (the radio show, free to listeners). The JustGiving page allowed direct donations, and people could donate as much or as little as they want.

But more importantly, a whimsical idea has turned into £11,000 and counting for an important charity. Well done, Paul.

You can donate to the cause, or share the JustGiving page to spread the word, via https://www.justgiving.com/helentitchener/3)

Nicholas Lovell