In Leeds University Union’s (LUU) Annual Report for 2019, it was revealed that a large sum of money to the tune of £2.6 million was raised by LUU’s clubs and societies.
LUU is home to over 330 clubs and societies contributing to the continued prosperity of students across campus. In 2019 LUU saw a growth in society memberships with 30,721 students registering for a LUU club or society. This is a significant increase from the 27,270 statistic in 2018.
Whilst the £2.6 million generated is a little lower than that of the £2.7 million raised in 2018, it is still £300,000 more than the money raised in 2014 and 2015.
Over the past year LUU has offered a remarkable choice of activities and societies for students across Leeds. Societies in LUU contribute to student’s wellbeing, skills development and have raised a significant amount of money for some impressive charitable causes over the past years.
In September 2018, LUU launched a 4-year strategy focussing on the vision ‘Together we’ll make sure you love your time at Leeds’. Encompassed within this strategy was the organisation of structures to support and develop clubs and societies within LUU, ensuring that students are ready for the future, feeling happy and feel they are valued members of the union.
LUU RAG is the official fundraising society for LUU and in 2019 they handled over £71,000, resulting in a held balance of £20,000 by July 2019.
LUU RAG saw a decrease from previous years in their annual proceeds, reaching £137,000 in 2018 and £158,000 in 2017. LUU RAG had their most successful year in 2014 with proceeds reaching £278,000 leaving behind a balance of £70,000.
However this year, the Leeds RAG Fashion Show, one of the biggest events on campus broke its fundraising record with over £27,600 raised.
Whilst LUU RAG is the official fundraising society at Leeds University Union, fundraising is also carried out within other societies, many of which can be found under the volunteering tab on the LUU Clubs and Societies page.
Lydia Evans, the activity officer for 2019/20 at LUU has commented on the fantastic achievements over the course of the year.
“It’s truly amazing the generosity and care our Clubs and Societies show every year, and I don’t think many people realise it. Students get a bad rep – when really we’re the ones digging deep! We’ve got the big hitters like RAG who do a fantastic job year on year (£27,000 raised at LRFS is a ridiculous achievement), but also hundreds of fundraising secs from a whole range of societies working hard all year round to raise money for some excellent causes. There are countless examples, including Rugby Union who have a very close relationship with the James Burke Foundation (set up in memory of a member they very sadly lost to suicide in 2017), the University of Leeds Boat Club, who launched their partnership with Leeds Mind last year and the BEAT society who have seen a revamp this year raising money for eating disorder charities. But what’s been most impressive is the response of Clubs and Societies over the last few weeks, I’ve seen Clubs and Societies rally together to support those who most need it. For example, Swim Polo are doing a virtual race to Porec to raise money for the Leanord Chesire Charity, and the St John Ambulance Society are fundraising for PPE alongside volunteering on the front line.”
The continued success of custodian activities in LUU has left behind a balance £770,000 out of the £2.6 million which was handled in 2019. This statistic is considerably higher than previous years, for example in 2016 where the remaining balance was £608,000. These funds are essential in providing equipment and developing the opportunities available to students in Custodian activities at the University of Leeds.
LUU looks forward to another successful year of fundraising and will continue to develop custodian activities throughout the University of Leeds.
Photo credit: LUU RAG facebook page and LUU BEAT facebook page