Virtual Dog is a poignant symbol for anyone who has ever turned online in times of distress. It recognises that special feeling of finding support for mental health issues through social media, and the joy of being able to express yourself online. Virtual Dog also represents all the wonderful material that people create: blogs, twitter, Facebook, YouTube, Forums and any type of online expression.
Virtual Dog is the newest part of the Black Dog Campaign. We need all of you to help make this Virtual image into a real Black Dog statue.
Virtual Dog is going to be run by and for SANE’s online community. You are an integral part of our work and mission, so we feel there should be a Black Dog dedicated specially to you.
We need your help. We’re hoping to rally together everyone from all parts of our online community - social media, blogs, forums, to help us raise enough money to make our Virtual Dog into a Black Dog statue. We need £5,000 to produce the Virtual Dog statue, apply your unique coat and have money to transport it around the country. All it takes is one text message. By texting SANE to 70300 you can donate £3* to help make this idea a reality, and bring our online community to life. By filling out the Gift Aid form, you can increase the value of your donation by 25%. That way we can make the most of the money you kindly give us. We’d also be able to send you a thank you, to show you just how much your support means to us. If text isn’t right for you, you can still donate online
But that’s not all we’ll be doing. We want you to design the coat of Virtual Dog. Each month the dog will be sporting a new coat; showcasing the wonderful designs you send us. The best will be placed on our Virtual Dog statue. You can email, tweet, or send us your designs on Facebook. Once we reach our fundraising target and can make your Virtual Dog real, we’ll pick the best one to decorate the statue.
We want to send the physical statue on a tour of schools and universities across the UK – a special gift from SANE’s online community. The Virtual Dog statue will help to educate the next generation about mental health, and reduce the stigma surrounding it. We want you to tell us the most deserving destinations – the best stories will define the route.
You can follow Virtual Dog on Twitter for more updates: @VirtualDogSANE
There are so many ways you can get involved in this campaign. We are looking forward to seeing what you all come up with. And we can’t wait to see how you make the Virtual Dog real!
* SANE now receives 100% of money donated by text. You can increase the value of your donation by applying Gift Aid (if you are a UK taxpayer).