Post by Deji Balogun – R&D Tax Advisor @ ihorizon
Why did I decide to fundraise?
I’ve never done a fundraising activity before so it’s a good question. I think I have an answer, or maybe not. I got into fundraising based on purely two things: my love for challenges (does not always do me good) and my love for contributing and giving back in any way that I can. Oh! And lest I forget, I can be very random and spontaneous – which in basic terms means there is no logical reason as to why I do things most of the time. I merely saw an email saying “boxing challenge, train 8 weeks, fight in front of friends and raise money for children” and that was it – job done. I signed myself up almost immediately without thinking what I got myself into (in a way relatable to Brexit, sorry Brexiteers).
I chose to support the NSPCC because of the work they do to help children in difficult situations suffering fro abuse. Everything that we do in life, or most of it, in some way relates to the future. Unfortunately, children don’t get to select what situations they may find themselves in – no child is responsible for selecting the parents they end up with or the conditions they find themselves born into. It is well evidenced that a child’s upbringing plays an important part in their future outlook. That is why I feel it is important that we help children – they are the future! As a society, we are inadvertently or indirectly responsible for one another. By helping a child, we don’t just make a difference in the life of that child but you are helping shape the future and that is why I chose to support the NSPCC – they make differences in the lives of children and are helping shape a more positive outlook for the future.
The journey was not an easy one but it was definitely a rewarding one. I gave up resting on a Wednesday evening and a lie in on Saturdays for a training regime that challenged me not just physically but also mentally. After work on a Wednesday evening I would have to wait behind and then make my way to Bank where I trained from 8-9 pm with others (I’m not the only crazy one) who were taking part in raising money for the NSPCC and then cycle back home afterwards with aches and pains in the first few weeks while my body adjusted to jabs, crosses, hooks, uppercuts and slips. Saturdays were easily tougher as there was strength and conditioning training included from 10 in the morning to 12 in the afternoon. Now, it’s not as bad it sounds but imagine going out on a Friday night and getting back for 4 am then waking up by 9 am and sharply getting to training just to get an uppercut in the face due to your slow reactions (result of alcohol still finding its way out your system). Yeah! It wasn’t particularly fun, but it didn’t put me off. It just put any form of late night boozing activity on a Friday night on hold. Outside of the training offered at Gymbox I started running more once again to ensure my stamina was up to par. Sorry to all those who had to witness me sweat profusely in the gym – my body can’t help it. I had to make new friends at the gym so I could spar and improve my skills. To summarise, I sacrificed time, sweat and blood (and for a second I thought I was about to sacrifice my nose after a punch to the face during sparring).
All seems crazy but really couldn’t have done it without the crazy colleagues I have at ihorizon – whom I’m not sure were actually supporting the cause or just paying to possibly see my face get reconstructed. All jokes aside, from the very moment I decided I would raise money for the NSPCC by entering a boxing match I got loads of emails of support and donations with encouraging messages soon as I set up my JustGiving page. With ihorizon promising to double the money raised, I knew I had to up my game. With everyone rooting for me to win, it was decided – I had to train hard and I had to try and win my fight. After 8 weeks of training, the final day came. I still remember the cheers as I left work to go for my first ever boxing match (a bit nerve racking) but once I was there in the ring I remembered all I had trained for, all I had done this for and all the people behind me cheering. With the sound of the bell, I was off to a fighting start and won my match.
The fundraising activity was a success and I raised under £400 with over £15,000 raised altogether for the NSPCC on the night of the event which would go towards helping children in need. I learnt some great skills during the course of the event which I will take on with me, made some other great professionals whom I am now friends with and most importantly helped a child somewhere that is in need of help.
Deji is part of ihorizon’s R&D tax team. If you need any R&D guidance, would like to know more about R&D tax credits or need to make a claim. Our team knock it out the park (as you can see)! Please email [email protected] or [email protected] for any inquiries.