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UK Charitable Giving is on a Steady Decline!

Posted by Nicholas Ogden

UK charities have faced a number of challenges of late which need addressing. Findings from the Charities Aid Foundation UK Giving 2019 report, released in May, showed that key measures of giving for charities are on a steady decline for the third year in a row and the same report also highlighted that trust in charities has decreased significantly too. 

The UK is the seventh most giving country in the world, but the not-for-profit sector is witnessing a downward trend in giving behaviours across the globe, including the UK. The CAF's World Giving Index examined data from the past 10 years, surveying more than 1.3 million people and found the recent downward trend in giving - now lower than in the aftermath of the financial crisis. 

As well as this decline in giving, it is evident that people's trust in charities and not-for-profit organisations is decreasing. Research shows that consumers - particularly of a younger generation - want to know the background and 'ins and outs' of the working of organisations before donating money or paying for services, and are also more likely to work for an organisation with a high level of social responsibility. 

With both giving and trust in decline, along with an increased emphasis on social responsibility, it is essential for UK charities to ensure they have clear brand transparency and accountability, as well as innovative fundraising strategies. Roles such as stories, content, case studies, digital and customer experience are all trending, and have proven to be key for many charities in showcasing their background and cause, all while building their brand transparency and accountability.

Many charities over the past couple of years have also introduced a millennial, or GenY-friendly brand purpose. These generations have placed more emphasis and an increased importance on brand culture and transparency, and with people of this age now entering the workforce, it is important that UK charities recognise this in order to attract talent as well as support. However, it is not just the younger generations who are asking more questions. People typically want to know the full background of a charity and as sector specialist recruitment consultants, we are being asked questions about charities’ accountability from more and more people - whether this is how money going towards certain charities is collected or if a research charity uses animal-testing methods. 

Storifying answers to these questions that are increasingly being asked of charities can be key. Innovative campaigns that answer these questions in different content forms - whether through storytelling, case studies or digital marketing methods - are instrumental in ensuring that charities are accountable and attract as much support as possible.

With giving and trust in decline across the UK charity sector, having dedicated marketing, communications and fundraising teams within your organisation can be of great value. 

For more information on this article, or help with the recruitment of marketing and fundraising professionals into your organisation, please contact Nicholas Ogden on 020 7269 6338 or



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