The Telephone Campaign, but not as we know it

Laura Stevens placing a call

As the College, the country and the world went into pause mode in March, one of many things to be put on hold was the Homerton Telephone Campaign. With just a week to go before students were due to begin calling alumni to solicit support, the annual event, a cornerstone of the College's fundraising operations, was postponed. 

However, nine months on, the prospect of putting a dozen students in a small room together for hours on end is no more feasible than it was in the spring. Instead, Homerton is half-way through its first ever remote campaign, with 15 students making calls from their rooms, either at home or in College. 

Deputy Development Director Christopher Hallebro, who manages the telethon, would usually be spending his evenings in the call room, listening to conversations and providing snacks and moral support. Instead he has had to oversee sessions via Zoom, ensuring that students have regular opportunities to compare notes and bond as a team, despite the distance.

"It's been a very different campaign this year - not being able to work with the callers in person, managing systems remotely and doing everything from a laptop in my spare room, but the students have been amazing and it's wonderful that so many alumni are supporting us."

Callers have so far spoken to 398 alumni, and have been hugely boosted both by the warmth of the conversations they have had, and by the willingness of so many to give. 

Caller Laura Stevens (BA History and Modern Languages, 2020), says: "It's been lovely to hear from our alumni about their great memories of Homerton and the exciting things they've done since leaving. I'll admit it has been a little bit strange making calls from my bedroom at home, but we really appreciate the fantastic support we've received from our alumni so far!"

Calling will resume on 7 January. If you have received a pre-call letter but would prefer not to receive a call, please let us know on development@homerton.cam.ac.uk. Thank you so much for the generosity of all those who have given so far.