How Right To Play Was Able to Raise More and Reach More



Children are amongst the most vulnerable people in the world – especially those whose futures are limited by violence, child labor, early marriage, illiteracy and inequality. Right To Play is nonprofit organization on a mission to empower children to rise above these challenges and find their way back to hope.

To power their mission, Right To Play puts on an extravagant gala every October with over 1,200 guests. However, once the realities of COVID-19 hit and they were forced to cancel, the team was challenged with finding a new way to move their mission forward in the current state of the world.

The solution was simple. Get creative and keep fundraising.



Right To Play’s annual gala is a signature fundraising. With the global pandemic, in-person event was no longer an option, and the team had to look for an innovative alternative to raise money and awareness for their cause.

“COVID-19 definitely changed a lot of things. It really highlighted a dependency on live events, but also created an opportunity for us to diversity our fundraising portfolio and expand our reach,” said Tanya Phillipps, Manager of Events & Sponsorships at Right To Play.

Like many nonprofits, COVID-19 forced Right To Play to get out of their fundraising comfort zone. The team needed a new, innovative way to:

  • Take their fundraising efforts virtual
  • Enhance participant reach
  • Tap into the power of their ambassadors
  • Deepen supporter connections to the mission



Right To Play created a virtual challenge fundraiser to push their fundraising forward in support of their mission. The team had some big goals for the event, and they needed to find the right technology to support them.

“OneCause provided a turn-key solution with tried-and-true templates and case studies so we wouldn’t have to start from scratch. The interface is very intuitive and allows for easy customization down to the details,” said Danielle Cadhit, Manger of Business Operations & Finance at Right To Play.

Fundraising Challenges - Play it Forward

The Right To Play team went all in with the OneCause Peer-to-Peer software for their ‘Play it Forward’ campaign – a 14-day challenge that kept families connected and active, by incorporating the 4 types of play that Right to Play promotes, while safe at home and socially distant:

  • Games
  • Sports
  • Creative
  • Free Play

Awareness Campaign

In order to make ‘Play it Forward’ a success, the team knew they needed to create a strong communication plan, connect participants to their cause, and amp up the excitement surrounding the event – all without spending a dime.

“We don’t spend much in the way of advertising, since we’d rather have funds directly benefit the charity. So, our team had to figure out how we were going to spread the word without media partners,” said Phillipps.

That is what drew Right to Play to OneCause’s Peer-to-Peer technology.

“When I came to the OneCause site and found out about the communication plan that you can build around your campaign, that’s when it really sealed the deal for me. The amount of awareness that you can build leading up to the event, all within the platform, was a HUGE plus for us,” said Phillipps.

Right To Play took to social media and began a two week awareness campaign leading up to the event. Their fundraising toolkit allowed participants to share their support for the ‘Play it Forward’ campaign in 2 simple steps. By including providing social media graphics and captions as well as rewarding participants for sharing on social media, Right to Play was able to motivate participants and make it easy to spread the word.

Social Media Ambassadors

After the Right to Play team ramped up the excitement for ‘Play it Forward’ with their awareness campaign, it was time to jump into the main event – their 14-day Peer-to-Peer challenge. Each day, a different celebrity athlete led the charge by incorporating 1 of the 4 types of play into a challenge.

The best part? These weren’t just celebrities; they were Right To Play Ambassadors!Play it Forward - Right to Play - Athlete Ambassadors

The 14 pro and Olympic athletes took to social media and began spreading the word about Right To Play. By including their social media handles on the event’s Meet Our Hosts page and arming their Ambassadors with the right tools to succeed, Right To Play was able to spread the word about Play it Forward far and wide!

“That is what I love, love, love about the OneCause product – the amplification abilities with social media. To have all the people who are participating become Brand Ambassadors meant we were able to keep that fundraising momentum going.” said Phillipps.



Right To Play was resilient in the face of fundraising adversity. Their ability to keep pushing their fundraising forward was key to their success, allowing them to raise more and reach more. Look at these results!Play it Forward Campaign Results

  • 4.6 million social media impressions
  • 282,000 social media outreaches
  • 61,626 Canadian dollars raised
  • 234 donations
  • 204 Participants
  • 38 teams

But Right To Play isn’t stopping there. To keep the momentum going, the team is turning their promotional videos into a monthly live web series. By featuring celebrity athletes and discussing timely topics, Right To Play will continue to spread awareness about their mission and engage with donors during this monthly touch point.

“Engaging with donors, prospects, and stakeholders virtually with the power of this platform has opened up so many exciting possibilities to ignite the hearts of our community beyond the typical reach of our location dependent in-person events,” added Cadhit.

Connect with a Cause

To learn more about Right To Play and support their cause, please visit their website.

Wrapping Up!

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