Candlelighters Case Study

What Acceleris was asked to do

The Candlelighters Trust, Yorkshire's pre-eminent children’s cancer charity, appointed Acceleris in October 2009 to highlight its additional fundraising requirement of £500,000 in 2010 to support its ‘Big Move’ from St James’s Hospital to Leeds General Infirmary.

What we did

Acceleris implemented a programme of communications activity split into three stages:

  • Branding, including consultation, design and implementation
  • Website, including development, copywriting and implementation
  • PR, including creation of collateral, relationship development and endorsement, digital communications and social and traditional media relations (press releases, case studies etc.)


Acceleris developed a series of strap-lines consistent with the branding which could be used throughout all collateral. In total, 17 strap-lines were created each based on the positive ‘Can’ message, such as ‘Together we CAN fight children’s cancer’.


Acceleris utilised historic information to produce accessible, engaging and dynamic web copy which was supported with the new branding, strap-lines, flash animations, and photography. New functions were added such as a ‘donate’ tool and an image and video gallery.


Acceleris developed and implemented a strategic visual launch event which successfully communicated the 2010 fundraising drive and new website. This photo stunt and resulting ‘stop-motion animation’ featuring 150 past and present patients and supporters forming the shape of a ‘human candle’ featured across the region’s TV, print and online media. Participants were also encouraged to record their own experiences of the day and upload them to a social media platform of their choice linking back to the Candlelighters website.

Regular media activity was implemented focusing on the Candlelighters core target of regional media, with digital and social platforms also utilised to engage with local communities.

The Results

The launch story appeared in 18 media titles including Calendar TV, BBC Leeds, the Yorkshire Post and the Yorkshire Evening Post.

The exposure generated since launch currently holds an ad value of over £100,000. In addition, there have been almost 4,000 unique visitors to the new website (viewing over 22,000 pages) and a 30 per cent increase in Facebook friends in four months. Media exposure has increased by 300 per cent and is now receiving weekly hits across the region’s TV & Radio broadcast outlets.


Parent Trustee Roger Stocker said: “The brand development has helped Candlelighters to freshen up the 34-year-old organisation, aligning it with other similar larger national charities. The website refresh has opened up many more opportunities for supporters to get involved with the charity and communicate in new ways. The PR programme was designed to underpin the new brand and website and was successful at communicating our key messages to existing supporters and new fundraisers.”