An online fundraising and volunteering platform has launched in the UK and aims to help charities raise money in “new and different ways”.
The platform, called eSolidar, combines donation pages for individuals to raise money, celebrity auctions, a marketplace where individuals and charities can sell items, and volunteering opportunities.
eSolidar launched in Portugal a year ago and has so far raised almost £70,000 and has nearly 500 charities signed up to use it. UK charities that have signed up so far include Cardiac Risk in the Young and forces charity Army of Angels.
Marco Barbosa, executive director at eSolidar, said that he hoped the new platform would enable charities to fundraise in “new and different ways” but that it would also help to “raise awareness” and build engagement as people who wish to support charities can do so by setting up an online shop to sell items or search for volunteer opportunities.
He told Civil Society News that the auction aspect has been particularly popular in Portugal with celebrities including Elton John and Katy Perry auctioning experiences like back stage passes to raise money.
There are no fees for donations and charities incur a 5 per cent commission fee when items are sold and 10 per cent fee on auctions. Charities that sign up before then end of the year will not be charged any fees for the first year.
The platform is working to make it possible to claim gift aid through the site, and in the interim is collecting information to pass on to charities so they can claim it.
Three out of four feel bombarded by fundraising
Ahead of its launch eSolidar commissioned some research from Comres into fundraising practices, which found that 74 per cent felt bombarded by fundraising.
It also found that 79 per cent ignore fundraising letters and that almost 60 per cent avoid donating to charities which spend a lot of money on fundraising.
Comres interviews over 2,000 adults in October 2015.