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To be sceptical about this charity now?

(52 Posts)
wickedlazy Tue 16-Dec-14 12:22:32

Donated £5 through text to save the children. Just had a guy on the phone trying to talk me into giving £10 a month. Through the course of the call, he said save the children's aim is to raise £324,000 in the next four years. He then added that this years add had cost £82,500 and ended on 31st January. I asked him would they repeat the campaign each year. He said they might. So if each years campaign costs £82,500 that is £330,000 spent to raise £324,000. And of course "some" of the money raised goes towards funding the campaign. Either he has gotten his figures wrong, or they are wolfs in sheeps clothing who won't be getting any more money from me.You think you're doing a good deed, helping children until you wonder if you are really just giving some advertising executives a lovely christmas bonus instead sad

All this came up because I had asked could I not just give via the website when I wished, and he said no we loose money if you do that and I asked why. He did say several times "I don't think I'm making sense". And when I seemed a bit hmm over £82,000 he gave me a full "disclosure" stating he was legally obliged to tell me he was ringing on behalf of listen, the company that runs the campaign, not save the children. Can anyone shed some light on all this?

KingJoffreysHasABigWhiteBeard Tue 16-Dec-14 12:27:15

Basically, your fiver paid his wage to waffle in your ear.

True story.

Middleagedmotheroftwo Tue 16-Dec-14 12:32:08

I have made the point several times to charities which ring me after I have donated by text that they have just negated my donation by paying for a phone call, and for the salary of the person that made it.

I now refuse to donate by text for this reason.

BoomBoomsCousin Tue 16-Dec-14 12:36:18

Basically what this boils down to is that the person who called you is very bad at their job.

Save the Children raise a lot more than £324K/4years. His company's campaign may have had a target of £324,000 (though it doesn't sound like he was very sure of what he was talking about). But the main value to Save the Children will be in getting you signed up as a regular giver, which they will be hoping will last a lot longer than 4 years. There is controversy over the use of private firms to fund raise in this way. Some of them make little for the charities they are supposed to work for, but a charity like Save the Children is probably big and savvy enough to have made rational decisions about whether it is a good deal for them over all. (There's still the qustion about how much it's reasonable to spend to fundraise though and whether it's ethical to call and pitch to you just because you donated by text).

Regardless of what the guy said, you can of course give via the website instead if you want to.

Optimistletoe1 Tue 16-Dec-14 12:37:58

Interesting to read these posts! I had been thinking how the donation by text scheme was inspired - everyone has their phone to hand at most times, so responding to an appeal couldn't be easier. But the follow-up phone call, and costs associated with it make me unlikely to give to charity in this way.

CheeseBuster Tue 16-Dec-14 12:38:55

All charities spend a ridiculous amount on fundraising and marketing. Macmillan are one of the worst I believe.

Coffeethrowtrampbitch Tue 16-Dec-14 12:38:58

Save the children have just given Tony Blair an award for services to children.
Presumably not the children killed in Iraq, who would be alive if he hasn't decided to participate in an illegal war.

They have refused to rescind the award, and I will never give money to them again.

Also, if you have given them your details they will phone to ask for money for other charities, even if you ask them not to (this happened to me).

Suzannewithaplan Tue 16-Dec-14 12:41:06

sounds like a racket to mehmm

BingBongSongEveryDamnDay Tue 16-Dec-14 12:46:25

I never donate by any means that can be traced back to me. Charity collection box, give lots of stuff to charity shops, I bake for nursery & work cake sales. But I loathe chuggers in all their forms & actively avoid them.

offtoseethewizard64 Tue 16-Dec-14 12:46:32

I hope that charities willl soon give up using these outsourced companies to raise funds.
I had a phone call one day from someone trying to get me to give extra to a charity that I already support. The caller claimed to be from the actual charity and started telling me about the wonderful work they do. As we have been using the services of this charity for 17 years, we know more about what they do than she did, so I told her so, at which point she admitted that she didn't actually work for them.
Anyway, I agreed to increase my donation but refused to give my bank details over the phone, so she said she would send the forms out. Fine - except it took 2 months for them to come. When they arrived, I had a query about something the caller had said, which didn't tie up with the form I had been sent, so rang the charity fundraising office direct to ask a question.
When I said I had a query about the forms the chap said "let me guess, you didn't agree to sign up". I replied, that actually I had, but had a question about the form. I got the distinct impression he had been inundated wth calls from people who had been targetted by this firm and they had used hard sell or claimed people had agreed to donate when they hadn't. I don't know how much this charity paid this outsourced firm cpmpared to the return they got, but I hope they realise that the damage to their reputation (as a relatively small local charity) probably isn't worth it.

TheGirlFromIpanema Tue 16-Dec-14 12:47:25

I donated to Unicef after James McEvoy told me too in those lovely blue eyes of his smile

I had at least four calls from Unicef afterwards to get me to sign up to a regular donation. I explained. I reasoned. I pleaded with them not to keep calling as the guilt was too much. And then I started haging up. On Unicef ffs.

I probably won't bother with text donations again, although tbf I've done loads of Radio 1 and 2 ones over the years and never had any follow up guilt-trippy calls, so maybe I'll just donate to theirs in future.

wickedlazy Tue 16-Dec-14 12:52:15

It doesn't help my perception of all this, that this was roughly the fifth or sixth time they had tried to ring me. I usually don't answer calls from London as I assume they are sales calls, (samsung s5 tells me where some callers are calling from) but I answered this one by accident (didn't check caller ID first as I thought it was MIL ringing me back). I checked there and it is indeed the same number that I've been ignoring (they have been calling roughly twice a week). All the posts here agreeing it's all a bit hmm are very disheartening. And the "short call" turned into 13 minutes and 10 secs before I informed him I was sorry but I was ending the call and hung up.

JoanHickson Tue 16-Dec-14 12:54:17

I am sceptical about the way some charities are run and wonder who they truly benefit.

Suzannewithaplan Tue 16-Dec-14 12:58:40


Some of them seem like job creation schemes, find a cause with which to emotionally hook people and then create a profitable business around it‎

shakemysilliesout Tue 16-Dec-14 13:02:19

15 pence of every pound given to save the children goes towards fundraising/ admin etc. 85p goes to saving children.

Charities must fundraiser- how do u suggest they do it? Ideas below:

Charity treks
Charity gifts ie goats
Chuggers
Cold callers
Direct debits
Marathons
Legacies

Figfog Tue 16-Dec-14 13:05:01

As annoying as it is to be hassled like this, charities will only spend on marketing and fundraising to make more money. (I used to work for one that did just that). Their aim will be to get you to become a regular giver which is the most valuable type of donor for a charity. Any fundraising that doesn't payback successfully will be stopped- and sometimes the payback period is rather long, but it will payback and generate more funds for the charity.

I personally find it really annoying, but from a financial and business point of view it does make sense. They will even take into account how many people they piss off and it will still be worth it for their bottom line of fundraising.

shakemysilliesout Tue 16-Dec-14 13:05:39

Suzannewithaplan- it's a good point, but saying that were true, is it a bad thing??helping children and also employing adults, thereby keeping children out of poverty? Just musing

shakemysilliesout Tue 16-Dec-14 13:07:15

Agree with figfog.

Rosa Tue 16-Dec-14 13:09:45

I refuse to donate to any charity that hounds me in any shape or form from the big to the small. The ones that have taken me off the mailing list emails or whatever have had my donations reinstated. The others will not see a penny.

Figfog Tue 16-Dec-14 13:13:04

Charities have to ask for donations though. As much as people like to pretend otherwise, most people will only donate when they are asked/ compelled to. Most people just don't donate to charity unless they are asked- and so how do people think they should fundraise without asking?

shakemysilliesout Tue 16-Dec-14 13:15:14

But rosa how to u remember to give to these charities who don't hound u? Charities need you to know who they are (hence marketing) and have to remind you to give (hence the hounding). Do u hunt out charities to give to? And then not give again if they remind you of their work and relevance? I'm not being snippy just curious as to how u choose a charity. I like to look at pound to pence spend.

DidoTheDodo Tue 16-Dec-14 13:20:45

No charity will use a fundraising method that doesn't work for them.

As a previous poster says, people don't give unless they are asked, and the number one reason (in countless surveys) as to "why do you give to X?" is "because I was asked". This is common to all levels of giving, from the £2 donation to the £2million major donor.

Also, I have never worked for a charity (and I have worked for 9 of them) that give s Christmas bonus to anyone.

MrsGSR Tue 16-Dec-14 13:24:43

According to this: www.savethechildren.org/site/c.8rKLIXMGIpI4E/b.6229505/k.5C4E/Financial_Information.htm
Only 6% of the money they raise goes on fundraising. 89.4% goes on programme services. Which is pretty good. From memory, I think Red Cross is closer to 70%.
Charities have to publish financial reports each year, if you google you should find them smile

I think the guy on the phone was talking crap.

JoanHickson Tue 16-Dec-14 13:28:12

I think people give for two reasons. Firstly they want to help a certain charity and feel good about donating. Secondly social pressure, asked to give or sponsor. If they refuse they will be thought less of by others so they donate and resent it.

Figfog Tue 16-Dec-14 13:30:43

I am never quite sure why people are so against some of their donation being used to generate more funds for that charity. It just seems complete common sense to me to generate as much income as possible.

As MrsGSR says, all of their financial reports can be accessed and so you can understand how donations are used for whichever charity you have donated to. They are very heavily regulated.

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