Public shows unprecedented support for charities

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Despite financial downturn, more people are giving to good causes #NeverMoreNeeded

4th August 2020 by Robert Armour 0 Comments

Struggling charities are being bolstered by an outpouring of public support with one in five people giving to good causes in the last three months.

Despite huge job losses and an economic downturn, research by YouGov shows donors are giving more than before to help causes they care for.

Organisations have warned that donations are likely to fall sharply because of the pandemic with an estimated £12.4bn loss being forecast.

And with paid employment in Britain plunging by almost 650,000 employees since the onset of the coronavirus pandemic in March, more people have less to give. 

However the research counters this showing that, despite the tightening of purse strings across the country, 21% of a sample of 83,000 said they had donated to charity in the past three months - just over one in five. 

The market research firm's analysis also found that people had been more likely to give a one-off gift rather than a regular donation during the coronavirus crisis.

Donors are especially likely to be older people, with 48% being aged 55 and above (compared to 38% of all Britons being this age. They are also more likely to be female (54%) than male (46%).

Hugh Arnott, a consultant who advises organisations on how to make the most of their income, said the public react most generously when adversity strikes.

“We see it time and again when appeals go out, even ones unrelated to this country. People empathise closely with good causes and rally when the economy suffers,” he said.  

“There is also a correlation that when people have less to give, they give proportionality more than usual. The pandemic has also brought a lot more community causes to the fore, bringing charity closer to home and making the public more aware. This all creates fertile grounds for giving.” 

Health and medicine charities were most likely to attract these donations, with 30% of donors saying they had given money to these causes, followed by animal charities. A further one in five donate to children and youth charities.

Donors’ personal income levels are largely identical to those of the population as a whole, the survey found. Nearly half of donors have between £1 and £499 a month in disposable income.

In terms of noticeable attitudinal differences, donors were more likely to agree with the statements “I make an effort to support local business” and “I try to buy products made in my home country”, the report found.