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WIBU to walk away from this charity?

(91 Posts)
unobtanium Wed 26-Jun-13 13:10:52

I get accosted on my high street at least twice a month by charities asking for donations.

I really want to give -- the causes are always worthwhile, but their "conditions" make it so difficult.

They won't take cash, they won't take cheques, they won't take one-off donations from any card.

No, they MUST have your signature for a direct debit, here and now. Of course you can cancel the arrangement after a year, if you keep all the documentation, and remember to go through all the correct formalities in June 2014.

When I protest that aside from the odd ad-hoc donation, my husband and I already sponsor a Kenyan child and her family, plus contribute to one other cause on an ongoing basis, and that we always agree together on long-term commitments... they don't quite seem to get it.

They won't give leaflets to take away, nor even the direct debit form (the one they want me to sign then and there) to complete with my husband and send in to them later.

I always feel absolutely terrible after these encounters. It's probably very frustrating for them too.

Could they not be more flexible? I know they need to be able to plan, but their terms put so many people off, and surely a one-off donation here and now is better than nothing?

I won't give to a charity that uses chuggers. I looked into working for wesser at one point as they pay £8 am hour, with bonuses and reduced fee accommodation (a very very good/will paid seasonal job, which is what I did for a living at the time). Then realised I didn't want to be a chugger and that if I was bettering over a grand a month from these charities, just how much were they paying, from donations intended for the visible cause, to get hundreds of us?

MrsMook Wed 26-Jun-13 13:48:30

They drive me round the bend too. Added in the Sky/energy companies/whatever product in the shopping centre, you can't go for more than 20m without being hounded for something. I try to be polite as I dismiss them, but it gets very wearing.

DM has a DD with a charity. She started with the £2 a month, then they rang her and it went up to £5, then £10. At that point she ended up playing the pensioner card and began to get shirty. It's completely put me off the idea of a DD.

Bag packers have had flack from here in the last few days, but at least it's unpaid volunteers, supporting a cause they are interested in and doing something that some people find useful.

I'm a volunteer and use my free time to do a bit of good to people in my community. I don't need a DD with a large and beaurocratic organisation to do a little bit of good.

BrandiBroke Wed 26-Jun-13 13:52:50

There was a stand set up in my town today advertising a charity lottery. At least 3 big banners all stating '£1 to play.' I was surprised that there weren't loads of people around it as it was a good cause so I went up to one of the two guys there with my pound outstretched.

"Sorry but we're not actually taking money today."
"Oh. So why do the signs say it's a pound to play?"
"We're getting people to sign up to monthly direct debits."
"Sorry, I was willing to give a one off donation but I'm not signing up for anything."

I was just so annoyed that all the signs suggested you could get a ticket there and then for a pound when that wasn't the case at all. I do give to charities (including one that comes directly from my wages) and I am happy to give to others, as long as I'm not tied to anything.

blueemerald Wed 26-Jun-13 14:00:34

I hate charity muggers.

One turned up at my door and showed my brother (who has ASD and you'd have to be blind not to notice when you talk to him) photos of extremely ill premature babies and took his bank details. (There was similar story on here about a poster's brother who had learning difficulties being signed up to something...Talktalk maybe?) He fretted and had horrible dreams for ages afterwards.

My friend and I were stopped by one when we were students and worked for minimum wage in a pub. We said sorry, we couldn't afford it and she replied 'Yeah, right.' I quickly and sharply pointed out that she probably earned more per hour than we did and she should be ashamed of herself for that comment.

Crinkle77 Wed 26-Jun-13 14:28:33

Even worse is when they knock at your house. I had one the other week and when I answered he said 'don't worry I'm not trying to sell you anything' and I was like well you still want money off me. And then when you say no thanks they start to ask why. None of your business now piss off. Although the ultimate come back was when chuggers representing Dogs Trust came round. We had adopted a dog from them already so when they said where they were from I just said we have adopted a dog from them already so think we have done our bit for that charity. They had no come back to that.

swampytiggaa Wed 26-Jun-13 14:40:43

I had some come to the house for a children's charity. I said no thank you very politely.

They then asked if i didn't care that children were living in poverty? I replied that i did but with five of my own my priority was obviously keeping them out of poverty. Then i shut the door.

Most upsetting for me was when cancer research phoned. I said i wasn't able to commit to a dd. They said oh so you obviously aren't concerned about cancer. I replied that actually my brother had died from cancer the week before -which was true - and i knew exactly how to donate when i was able to.

Chuggers i just ignore tho.

Eyesunderarock Wed 26-Jun-13 14:52:35

You could build a whole series of interlocking polemics if you put a bit of thought into it.

'DOGS TRUST?? SOD THE BLOODY DOGS! Don't you realise that there are children walking 20 miles a day on blistered feet just to get an education? And you want me to care about an animal? Why are you working for dogs when there are innocent children who need schools?'

' Save the Children? What about all the women trapped in dire situations with no access to contraception, family planning or safe childbirth facilities?'

'Amnesty International? What about the Diabetic Donkeys of Damascus?'

The point being that all charities push their case as being the most important and vital and necessary that you support.

CharlieCoCo Wed 26-Jun-13 14:52:39

i got a call from cancer research, reading a script like a robot. I had done race for life so that wasnt enough for them and wanted me to do monthly donations so my money would make an impact..everytime i said no, they read another script with a lower amount til it got to 'just £2 a month". i said, i do my annual walk which the donations add up to more than what £2 a month would be. My monthly donations go to other charities which dont have sponsored walks so i will not be setting up one for this charity when i do my walks! grr, i know they are just reading a script, but i was proud of the fact that i do these walks each year and this script was basically telling me my donation isnt enough.angry

decaffwithcream Wed 26-Jun-13 14:59:27

Go directly to the website of any charity you want to support and sign up for a direct debit there.

I read a guardian article that explained how it was calculated that if you signed up for a direct debit of a few pounds a month, through one of these fund raisers, the first 12 to 15 months of your donations went to pay for the commission charged by the fundraising company.

Which would be why they are telling you you can cancel your direct debit after 12 months. ( you can cancel a direct debit whenever you want )

Tell them, sorry, you only donate directly to charities. There does not seem to be a reply to that in their script.

unobtanium Wed 26-Jun-13 15:02:58

Oh no, Diabetic Donkeys in Damascus? Something more for me to worry about!

SugarMouse1 Wed 26-Jun-13 15:12:43

Its better to just put some change in a charity box when you see one.

Branleuse Wed 26-Jun-13 15:26:22

I already GIVE all my free money to diabetic donkey's of damascus!

I think its quite acceptable to just tell them that you NEVER give money to chuggers, and if they keep on, just say NO THANKYOU and keep walking.

I've NEVER known ANYONE who has signed up through a chugger. I know it must make sense financially (or they wouldn't do it), but I really don't understand how. If they are really persistent, I stand and listen to their speile, make sympathetic noises etc, and then drop the bombshell that I don't possess a direct debit card and ONLY ever use cash - shuts them up!

Madratlady Wed 26-Jun-13 15:40:22

I found out the other day that they can't ask under 25s for donations any more. I'm slightly baffled by this (I am married, have a baby on the ay, earn a salary and rent a house but I'm not allowed to set up a direct debit to a charity?!) but it is useful for getting away without looking like I'm mean for saying no.

SaskiaRembrandtVampireHunter Wed 26-Jun-13 16:56:46

If you don't mind looking like a huge meanie you can do what I do. When they say 'don't you care about x', respond with, 'no, not especially'. They will give you a shock look, but meh.

I should add: I do care, I just prefer to donate directly.

Onesleeptillwembley Wed 26-Jun-13 16:59:17

If it bothers you so much why do you even engage with them? It's not obligatory. Just say 'No thanks' and walk on.

Eyesunderarock Wed 26-Jun-13 17:05:58

'If it bothers you so much why do you even engage with them? It's not obligatory. Just say 'No thanks' and walk on.'

Because of the all-consuming guilt that some people suffer when hooked by
'Will no one think of the Suffering Chinchillas of Serbia?'
Few people have the confidence not to be guilted into donating, or the wish to appear, God forbid, rude to those Doing Good Works.
Which chuggers know and feed on.

rainbowfeet Wed 26-Jun-13 17:06:36

Don't feel guilty, I never even stop to listen to all their waffle!! They are no doing it to support a favoured charity they are being paid!! Generally it's people standing there for hours on end with collection boxes are the ones doing proper charitable work!!!

I too support 2 charities with a monthly dd these are charities close to my heart & that's what charity is all about! These chuggers should be banned!

TarkaTheOtter Wed 26-Jun-13 17:17:03

I civilly say no straight away (prefer to give money and time to local charities). Most agencies are signed up to the PFRA code an shouldn't persist after you say no. If they continue, then complain here.

I've had to complain when they've given me a hard sell at the door. It may be effective for charities to use these methods but I don't think they are very ethical and ruins the charities good name.

I think people would be disappointed I they knew how much money was being spent on commission rather than good causes.

ComtessedeFrouFrou Wed 26-Jun-13 17:21:34

I just walk past chuggers. If they try to accost me, I give them the "death stare"

^^ This

It's been quite successful to date grin

mrsjay Wed 26-Jun-13 17:24:54

if a charity is chugging then they are not worth your time look for another charity that you can make donations with how much and when you want, I know charities are struggiling but it is a disgrace that they harass people,

thenightsky Wed 26-Jun-13 17:29:53

The best response to chuggers I ever heard was someone on MN funnily enough wink

They said to hold up a hand, palm forward, whilst saying in perfectly clipped tones, like the Queen.. 'Sorry, I don't speak a word of English'.

grin

MsHighwater Wed 26-Jun-13 17:32:51

I no longer give to Red Cross after they sent a chugger to our door. She got the bum's rush from me on the grounds that I don't make financial decisions on the doorstep or without consulting the joint account holder (DH - we're a "family money" family). Thing is, she returned later when I was out and guilted DH into signing up. I know it was the same woman because she was leaving as I got back. Both the charity and DH got a piece of my mind that day and I have yet to forgive them.

mrsjay Wed 26-Jun-13 17:35:51

My mum wont let my dad answer the door now as he signs up for everything cos he feels guilty

mrsjay Wed 26-Jun-13 17:36:47

I had to cancel the woodland trust and some childrens charity for them as he had signed them up and mum isnt that great on the phone <rolls eyes>

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