The NRK Telethon, "TV-aksjonen"

The NRK Telethon is the largest information campaign and fundraising event in Norway. With the funds from this years Telethon, The Norwegian Red Cross will provide crucial aid to civilians caught behind the front lines of war and conflict.

We would like to invite you to take part in the annual Norwegian tradition; the NRK Telethon. Every autumn this nationwide charity campaign raises money for a good cause. On the 23rd of October we need 100 000 people all over Norway to go door-to-door in their neighbourhood collecting money for this year's charity, the Norwegian Red Cross. We hope you would like to sign up and join us on the most important Sunday walk of the year.

The NRK Telethon is granted to a different Norwegian organization every year. An independent board of representatives selects the winner based on the applications the organizations submit. The NRK telethon typically raises between 180 and 240 million NOK, and the organisations are given a timeframe of five years to implement their proposed Projects.


Helping civilians in war and conflict

With the funds from the Telethon this year, The Norwegian Red Cross will provide crucial aid to civilians caught behind the front lines of war and conflict. By supplying medicines, healthcare, clean water and food to civilians affected by war and conflict, this year's telethon will provide relief to some of the most vulnerable people in the world, in Myanmar, South-Sudan, Somalia, Syria, Lebanon, Afghanistan, Guatemala, El Salvador and Honduras. Projects in Norway related to the integration of refugees will also receive funding.

The situation is urgent, and even the smallest contributions will help save lives. The Red Cross is one of the few aid organizations allowed through enemy lines with humanitarian assistance. Through working with the network of local volunteers, the Red Cross has access to many who would otherwise be cut off from crucial humanitarian assistance.


Information and fundraining

The NRK Telethon is the largest information campaign and fundraising event in Norway. On the day, NRK broadcasts an eight-hour long TV-show reporting from the countries and the projects in the field, and also broadcasting live from the many fundraising activities happening across the country. A live auction takes place in the TV studio and various musicians and artist dedicated to the cause perform on stage. As the money from the door-to door collectors is counted, viewers can follow how well their hometown is doing compared to others, and in which places in Norway people are the most generous. This friendly competition is one of many elements making the NRK telethon a unique national tradition.

Celebrities and spokespersons are also invited to feature in the world’s longest radio show hosted by Norways biggest radio channel for youth and young adults the P3.  The program lasts 100 hours and in 2015 the radio show raised 3,5 million NOK from their listeners alone.

The telethon, with all its related activities, has a massive reach in local, regional and national media. Local papers portray members of their community engaged in activities to raise money and how they mobilize volunteers for the door-to-door action. In the weeks leading up to the day, the NRK telethon is one of the most visible news items in Norwegian media.


School children learn about humanitarian law

In relation to the campaign, digital teaching material is developed for pupils in both primary, secondary and high-school. The younger generation is an important target group for the information campaign. Through the teaching material and related educational activities they learn about humanitarian law and politics, and get insight into the daily life of refugees and children living with war and violent conflicts.

In order to reach out to the "whole population" 7000 volunteers work in more than 500 local committees to mobilize 100 000 door-to-door collectors. 

The NRK Telethon has run every year since 1974. This year the telethon is happening on the 23rd October. All the district offices of The Red Cross are involved in organising the telethon, their various local activities being part of the campaign.