Has your email inbox recently been swamped by companies and charities telling you about how they keep your information and asking you to confirm how you wish to be contacted?  That will include one from us about our marketing approach. For some, it will feel like a great time to clear out all those spam emails you’ve accidentally signed up to (or not as the case may be) over the many years: others will ignore the email - dismissing it as yet another ploy to gather up your data: and some of you will be merrily clicking ‘yes’ to all.

But why is this all happening now? 

Well, it feels like it’s the only topic of discussion at the moment in both the charity and business sector - and it’s down to some new data privacy laws known as General Data Protection Regulations or GDPR for short.  This is enacting some EU Regulations on ensuring that your data is managed effectively by organisations like us. And whilst, amid the scandal of Facebook and Cambridge Analytica, this is absolutely the right thing to do, it also causing charities some consternation. This is because we rely on engaging with our supporters on a regular basis to tell you about what we have achieved and what our plans are. Yes it includes telling you about fundraising events but we have to be honest that charities rely on your generous support to keep going. And here in lies the rub. If people do not respond to that request then we can’t contact you. And if we can’t contact you, in amongst your busy lives you will probably not notice for a while, but we won’t be able to tell you about all the great things that are happening at Minstead.  You won’t hear about our new heart shaped pond at Portsmouth built by our student gardening club. Or that three of our New Forest students came first, second and third at the Olympic Stadium cycle race, or that there is a Furzey Toddle looking for fairies at the start of May.

So please, click yes to remain connected to us. We want you stay!