Gift Aid increase would give much-needed boost to charities

Gift aid

A coalition of leading voices from the sector has called on the UK Government to temporarily increase the level of Gift Aid that can be claimed on don

25th June 2020 by Gareth Jones 0 Comments

Voluntary sector organisations have urged for an increase in Gift Aid to be consider to help give a much needed boost to charity finances.

A coalition of leading voices from the sector has called on the UK Government to temporarily increase the level of Gift Aid that can be claimed on donations.

The move to boost the income organisations receive from eligible donations comes as charities of all sizes face a crisis to their income caused by the Covid-19 pandemic.

The proposed Gift Aid change would mean that a £100 donation from a UK taxpayer would increase to £133.33 for the charity once Gift Aid had been claimed. This compares to £125.00 as is currently be the case.  As a result, the Gift Aid claimed on every eligible donation would increase by one-third, up from the current one-quarter.

The coalition is being led by the Charities Aid Foundation (CAF) and includes support from a wide range of charities such as Cancer Research UK, the British Heart Foundation and grassroots charities. The group has called for the increase to be in place for two years while charities work to recover from the crisis.

The coalition estimates that this move could help charities to access an additional £450 million of much needed cash. It also includes changes to the Gift Aid Small Donations Scheme to ensure it benefits all.

Sir John Low, chief executive of the Charities Aid Foundation (CAF), said: “This is a straight-forward, quick and tangible way to help charities at this most challenging time in their history. It is an emergency response in a time of crisis for the very charities providing vital services in the UK and around the world.”

The campaign has been backed by the Scottish Council for Voluntary Organisations (SCVO). Chief executive Anna Fowlie said: “The pandemic has impacted on a complex range of funding sources for the voluntary sector in Scotland: fundraising; trading; contracts; grants and use of reserves. The response to this financial crisis needs to take account of that complexity in bringing in a range of different actors and actions to help the sector to be financially resilient and sustainable.

“As part of our wide-ranging work to urge a variety of funders to consider how they might best support the sector now and in the future, SCVO is pleased to support the call today on the Westminster government to make amendments to the Gift Aid scheme to bring additional monies into the sector and widen the reach of that scheme.”

Peter Lewis, chief executive of the Chartered Institute of Fundraising, said: “Government support through Gift Aid is proven to be a significant nudge which increases people’s likelihood to give, and encourages people to give more. This package would be an incredibly clever way for the government to support charities and the services they provide, at the time when they most need it.”