“We continue to be thrilled with the impact that text-to-donate has on the amount raised for Stand Up To Cancer. The results really do speak for themselves.”

“It was great to have Fonix involved with YouTube Fights Back, and the decision to adopt the £5 and £3 price points, to appeal to a younger audience, showed the flexibility of mobile as a donation method.”

Imogen Willdigg,
Senior Programme Manager from Stand Up To Cancer at Cancer Research UK

Helping Channel 4’s Stand Up To Cancer to raise money with mobile donations

Stand Up To Cancer is an annual collaborative campaign between Cancer Research UK and Channel 4, which raises money for translational cancer research.

Every year money is raised through via a range of fundraising efforts involving challenges and sketches, many of which feature celebrities (the star-studded line up of 2018 included Alan Carr, Maya Jama and Adam Hills, Liam Gallagher, James Corden, John Legend and Liam Neeson). Highlights included Celebrity Gogglebox and a special edition of Carpool Karaoke, and a season of programming and off-air fundraising activity culminated in the live show.


For the 2018 campaign, Stand Up To Cancer needed a secure, efficient and simple payment mechanic to maximise the amount of money raised.


SMS as a donation mechanic was at the forefront of the Stand Up To Cancer campaign, allowing donors to donate to the charity from their mobile phones: consumers simply needed to text a keyword to a shortcode, which was quick and easy to do. They had the option to donate either £3, £5, £10 or £20 and the costs were charged to their mobile phone bills.

Donors had the option to donate in this way during the many driver programs throughout the week, as well as during the main live show itself.

Fonix also processed donations for the campaign’s live YouTube stream YouTube Fights Back’, which ran alongside the live show. This featured many of YouTube’s biggest stars, who took part in a range of challenges to raise money for Cancer Research. For this particular feature, Fonix gave donors the option to donate £5 or £3 to the charity via text-to-donate.


The partnership brought about some record-breaking results for the charity. Fonix processed £5,213,949 in SMS donations on the night of the show; this contributed to the £24.6 million total announced on the night.

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