Posts Tagged: donations

The Manchester Dogs’ Home tragedy takes charity back to basics

Extraordinary. I don’t use this word lightly, but the public response on JustGiving to the fire at the Manchester Dogs Home last night has been quite literally extraordinary. And not just under the allegedly controversial newfangled definition of the word “literally”, either.

The total raised for the charity running the home was £130,000 when I woke up, just nine hours after the JustGiving page was set up by the Manchester Evening News, and only 12 hours after the fire itself. By the time I got to my desk, it was £400,000. When I finished writing my story on this literal whirlwind of charitable support just a couple of hours ago, it was £560,000. This had risen by nearly another £100,000 by the time I had written my first draft of this piece. Read more on The Manchester Dogs’ Home tragedy takes charity back to basics…

If we all gave one per cent of income, the sky would be the limit

Francis Davis, a policy adviser on the big society, has published a paper called The Diamond Dividend in which he estimates that £4bn more could be raised for charity if people gave one per cent of their income.

Only £4bn? He is no doubt wise to be restrained in his estimates, but a back-of-the-envelope calculation based on a recent survey suggests the sum could be a great deal more.

At the end of last year, the survey by the Charities Aid Foundation and the National Council for Voluntary Organisations indicated that 27 million adults gave an average of £31 in the year 2008-9.

If, for the sake of argument, each of those donors earned £20,000 and gave one per cent, their gifts would total £200 rather than £30 – a six-fold increase that would take total individual donations from £10bn to £60bn. The latter figure is getting on for twice the total income of the sector in recent years.

Back to the real world: when you remember what’s coming in the emergency Budget, and the likely effect on people’s pockets, there’s every chance giving will slip rather than climb in the coming months.

But you never know. Nick Hurd, the Minister for Civil Society, told Third Sector before the election that he was going to give one per cent this year. Davis wants to Queen to urge everyone to do the same – a sort of ‘one gives one per cent’ campaign.

Let’s not get carried away. For the next year or two, the sector will do well to continue to receive the current level of individual giving. Whoever finds the key to a significant increase will be a good candidate for the Nobel prize.

Read more on If we all gave one per cent of income, the sky would be the limit…