Third of people agree charities are effective on cost-of-living crisis, survey says

11 Apr 2023 News


Some 33% of members of the public in the UK agree that charities are doing an effective job of supporting people in the cost-of-living crisis, according to a survey.

The final report of GOOD Agency’s Cost of Giving Monitor series found that 14% of regular donors were considering cancelling their gifts.

It also reported that senior fundraisers were facing rising costs in their charities’ commercial operations.

“Alarmingly, our research revealed that very few people believe charities are effectively supporting those in need of assistance,” it reads.

“While those who give to charity were generally more positive, even recent donors were not convinced, with only 41% feeling that charities are doing an effective job.”

Older people more likely to maintain giving levels

Respondents to the survey said the cost-of-living crisis was a social priority, with more than 80% agreeing that they expect the crisis to remain an urgent problem for all of 2023. 

Some respondents said they have witnessed charities talking about the impact of the cost-of-living crisis.

Meanwhile, 14% of regular donors said they were considering cancelling their regular gifts, while 61% said they will keep their giving at the same level or more in the next three months.

Older generations were more likely to maintain their current giving levels, whereas younger generations are less likely to donate. However, a higher percentage of younger individuals expressed interest in giving more in the future.

Some 42% said they were “hopeful” about the year ahead when asked to choose three words that best describe their feelings.
Chris Norman, chief executive and founder of GOOD Agency, said: “Worryingly it looks like the decline in the number of regular donors seen in the years before the pandemic will continue. 

“Reframing charity’s ‘ask’ to demonstrate the value of the donors' support and the charity’s impact is going to be key to retain donors and engage new supporters. This research provides important insights to enable charities to plan and adapt for the future.”

‘The rising cost of goods is affecting our commercial operation’

GOOD partnered with YouGov for the final Cost of Giving Monitor report, and included qualitative research with five senior fundraisers.

Joanna Coker, deputy director of income at RSPB, noted: “The rising cost of goods is affecting our commercial operation and is showing in elements such as postage, print and fulfilment.”

She added: “We’re already on a pathway to join up teams and communication for greater cut through. The cost-of-living crisis has emphasised the importance of doing this to make the most of marketing investment.”

The total sample size was 2,021 adults, and fieldwork was undertaken between 28 February and 1 March 2023.  

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