Posts By: Sophie Hudson

Giving away money is not irrational

I went to a provocatively-titled Pro Bono Economics lecture this week which asked: “Why do some people give their money away and how can we stop them acting so irrationally?” During the main part of the lecture the former director of the London School of Economics, Sir Howard Davies, gave the audience an informative and… Read more »

I am finding marathon training easier than fundraising

I have never presumed that the job I write about every day is an easy one to do. But I don’t think that until this year, as I struggle to raise sponsorship for running the London Marathon 2012, I fully appreciated just how hard it must be. I have sat at many fundraising conferences over… Read more »

If you strike gold, you need the infrastructure to cash in

There was a reminder for everyone of an important lesson in charity fundraising yesterday. When the Big Give Christmas Challenge charity match funding scheme was launched in the morning, so many people tried to access the site to make a donation that it crashed, leaving would-be-donors with a message that told them the appeal had… Read more »

Lessons for charities when it comes to philanthropy

There was a refreshing, and in some ways quite surprising, degree of honestly among the philanthropists taking part in a panel discussion to launch the Family Foundations Giving Trends 2011 report this week. Perhaps the most notable presence on the panel was Trevor Pears, a co-founder of the Pears Foundation, which has been playing a… Read more »

The sector has a duty to be more open about the problems with charity bag collections

Two things in particular struck me when I was doing research for this week’s feature on charity clothing collection theft and fraud. Firstly, the good news. There does seem to be a genuine attempt by many organisations and bodies to try to tackle the problem in a meaningful way. From the National Fraud Intelligence Bureau to the Trading Standards… Read more »

Something needs to be done about charity clothing collections before it’s too late

So it seems that chugging got some time off this week as the most publicly-derided form of fundraising. Research by the British Heart Foundation about where exactly the clothes people donate in charity bags end up – mostly sold aboard as rag, apparently – got nationwide coverage and ignited some serious debate. There are a… Read more »

Battling on with the big society

People who do not read Third Sector, or are unlikely to read the full contents of the Giving White Paper, will be under the impression that yesterday David Cameron’s slightly ambiguous big society concept was launched yet again. To name but a few, the Guardian published an article just before the launch event of the… Read more »

It’s time for the sector to get creative about working with companies

Without wanting to sound like a complete cynic, my first reaction when I was told about Vodafone and JustGiving’s new free text donation service for charities was to wonder what the catch was. The service is being offered to every single registered charity in the UK – according to the Charity Commission’s website this morning,… Read more »

How can we get society to become more generous?

Earlier this month, lots of varied and purposeful responses to the government’s Giving Green Paper were published. It was funny to see them. I’ve known that meticulous work has been done on them by various sector bodies I have been in regular touch with for a few months now, and it was really interesting to… Read more »

Blanket emails to MPs are lazy, wasteful and lack strategy

There is absolutely no point in sending someone a blanket email if you are hoping to spur them into any kind of action. This is the case whether you are hoping to convince them to care about your cause, persuade them give a donation to your organisation or even entice them into reading past sentence… Read more »