Glastonbury: the charity

Charities are at the heart of most festivals, and see them as a good way of exposing their brand to different audiences.

Bluefaces: Jarvis Cocker shows support
Bluefaces: Jarvis Cocker shows support

Glastonbury has three charity partners, Oxfam, Water Aid and Greenpeace, as well as supporting more than 750 local charities every year. Glastonbury is the biggest of the 16 UK-based festivals Oxfam is attending this year, including Leeds, Bestival and Latitude.

After 17 years of being at the festival, Oxfam runs stewarding, campaigns and has two shops on site selling festival essentials and fancy dress. 'Our 2,000 stewards look after the entry and exit fence perimeters, which means the Oxfam logo is one of the first and last things you'll see at the festival,' says Oxfam's PR manager Stuart Fowkes.

The charity also takes 200 campaigners who get festival-goers to sign up to support campaigns. It has generated 333,000 signatures solely at Glastonbury since 1993, but the charity is now moving away from using this method. 'The engagement is not great. A lot of the time people don't know what they're signing. We want to spend more time talking to people we can really engage,' he says.

Last year, Oxfam ran the 'Bluefaces' climate change campaign asking people to paint their bodies blue to show their support. The charity held a celebrity photoshoot with Rankin, taking pictures of Jarvis Cocker that were broadcast on the big screens.

'If the campaign is more visual other people wonder what's going on,' says Fowkes. More than 33,000 joined in the campaign. This year, Oxfam will be asking festival-goers to write 'Fair Deal' on themselves somewhere and then upload pictures to Facebook: 'Festivals are a limited audience. We want to make sure we reach others by asking people to use their own networks.

'Festivals are one of the key ways we engage with a younger audience,' adds Fowkes. 'But if you try to be worthy or take a message that is too complicated to a festival, people will switch off. They are there to have fun.'

The corporate brand

The festival

The artist

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