Good News from RSPCA Victoria

June 23, 2020 Eve Heidemann

Poorly Drawn Pets

Poorly Drawn Pets was a 12-hour social media fundraiser, that required supporters to donate $20 for a poorly drawn portrait of their pet. Due to event restrictions, not only were we seeing a decline in fundraising income, but also engagement across staff, volunteers and supporters. The Poorly Drawn Pets campaign connected people isolating within their homes through one’s love of animals and art and gave us all sense of connection, whilst raising $16,000 for the cause.


Our key challenge was to manage approximately 80 volunteers, public enquiries, and the completion of approximately 600 portraits, all online and not in a face to face setting. This required us to create very clear and easy to follow volunteer instructions on how to access pictures, complete portraits and how to return them. We also set structured shift times over 5-7 days and ensured we had a clear calendar to manage enquiries and support volunteers. We used an online program (Trello) that all volunteers could access, giving them ownership over their own portraits. This also allowed us to access the portraits, upload back to Facebook and mark each as complete.


We measured impact through the number of donations, total income raised, level of engagement on our Facebook page and anecdotal feedback from donors, staff and volunteers. We received more than 600 donations through our website, completed 600+ drawings and raised more than $16,000. This income was raised all within 24 hours. Feedback received from our volunteers was very positive. They felt engaged and that they were contributing to the organisation, despite the difficult and isolating time. We were also overwhelmed by our donor’s feedback, with many requesting originals of their artworks. Many of the donors also donated more than once due to loving their artwork and the fundraiser so much!

This fundraiser was inspired by a campaign run by a couple of charities in the United States and trialled by RSPCA Qld. It was a social media-based campaign, supported by online posts and EDM’s to our supporters. We wanted to run a campaign that could be enjoyed from home, that built on people’s love for their pets. Not only were we trying to generate additional income for the organisation, but we wanted to build a sense of community and create something fun and positive, offering supporters some respite from the struggles of COVID. This campaign was an innovation introduced to our fundraising program and one that we will likely repeat, due to its success.

Here are some of the poorly (and not so poorly) drawn pets:

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