The Financial Times 2011-2012 Seasonal Appeal has raised £3.3 million for international development charity Sightsavers, the most that the annual appeal has raised since it began in 2005.
The appeal ran from November 2011 to the end of January 2012. Readers' and Sightsavers' supporters' donations raised £2.5 milllion, including matched funding. A photography auction at London’s Getty Images Gallery and an online auction of dinners with FT writers raised £165,408.
Support from Standard Chartered also boosted the total considerably. The company's global workforce donated their last hour's pay for 2011 to the appeal, raising a further £406,599. Standard Chartered also matched readers' donations through its community investment programme, Seeing is Believing.
The appeal was further boosted by more matched funding: the UK Government also matched donations made by individuals in the UK pound for pound.
Lionel Barber, the editor of the FT, said: "I am delighted that the FT and our generous readers and match funders have helped Sightsavers raise such a large sum - £634,000 more than in any of our previous appeals. This brings to over £9.4m the amount our charity appeals have raised over the past six years while highlighting the work of some wonderful organisations."
The FT has a combined paid print and digital circulation of 601,269 and a combined print and online average daily readership of 2.1 million people worldwide.
Photo: Safiya Suleiman is screened for trachoma at a facility in northern Nigeria, where Sightsavers has provided training and equipment. The Financial Times visited the programme as part of the appeal. Credit: Charlie Bibby / Financial Times