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To ask for help selecting a charity to donate to?

(30 Posts)
CharityHelp Tue 16-Dec-14 20:17:49

I have NC as I would like help but to remain anonymous - no accusations of boasting etc. (have seen a few on those on here today!) and thought MN would be a knowledgeable place to ask.

I would like to donate to a charity that helps homeless people or those with insecure housing. I have already donated to the Refuge John Lewis Appeal and will set up a regular donation to them in January.

I do not want to donate to someone who uses chuggers or a charity that forces religion on service users as I find it morally abhorrent and if there's a choice of charity would go for a secular one or, at a pinch, a non-pushy religious one. I was about to donate to Shelter but then remembered that I think I have seen Shelter chuggers before?

Does anyone have any recommendations? It would be for £50 a month, which is not a small sum to me so although I can afford it I want to be certain that it is going somewhere where it will help, not where the charity will spend half the money on an ad campaign or on phonebanks/hassling people. I live in the NE if anyone can recommend local homeless charities?

Or does CAB take charity donations? Have never been in the position of being able to afford to do this before (beyond the usual few pounds in a box) so it's all new. Advice welcome.

DevonFolk Tue 16-Dec-14 20:18:58

How about a women's refuge?

NeedsAsockamnesty Tue 16-Dec-14 20:20:18

Shelter or refuge

HighwayDragon Tue 16-Dec-14 20:22:05

MS society, SANDs or shelter

MrsPnut Tue 16-Dec-14 20:24:33

Contact your local welfare rights centre, either they will be a charity and would really welcome the money or they will know of the local homeless charity.

Can I just point out (again) that if you want to donate to a women's refuge that you contact your local one and donate directly and not to women's aid national federation.
The money given to Women's aid head office is used for campaigning work, which is really important, but not used to directly support women's refuges and local domestic abuse services.

CharityHelp Tue 16-Dec-14 20:25:31

Hi, I have already donated to Refuge (OP) and Shelter use chuggers.

Happy to donate to a North East England homelessness charity if anyone can recommend one? Otherwise will consider Women's Aid but would like to spread donations between causes, so one for homelessness and one for domestic violence support (Refuge).

CwtchesAndCuddles Tue 16-Dec-14 20:26:42

If you go onto the charity commission website I think you can search for charities in your area - you can look at their accounts online and find one that has low overheads.

CharityHelp Tue 16-Dec-14 20:27:22

Thanks MrsPnut. How do I contact the local one - can I just call the line? I thought it was for women in need to call only?

CharityHelp Tue 16-Dec-14 20:28:12

Cwtches Thanks so much, that's really useful flowers I had no idea where to begin and google only really throws up big charities.

Hadmeathello Tue 16-Dec-14 20:28:21

I would try to find a small, local charity where a S/O for £50 a month will really be felt. If you have a local CAB they will probably be able to advise you about what's in your area.

londonrach Tue 16-Dec-14 20:32:49

Personally i think you cant beat the local hospices. (Mum uses one for her arm following breast cancer and spends one hour connecting in a machine drinking tea and reading the latest magazines. If anyone has spare recent magazines, hospices and your local old persons home or doctors surgeries are grateful for them)

GoddessWhoWalksEarthAsWoman Tue 16-Dec-14 20:39:31

Good on you charity. I don't have a recommendation but just a reminder to give which ever charity you choose your details if you are a UK tax payer so that they can claim the giftaid back. This effectively increases the value of your donation by another 25%.

londonrach Tue 16-Dec-14 20:46:30

Godness make sure you pay enough tax if you giftaid and you dont mind the gov knowing to which charity you donate. My mums friend gave alot to a charity shop must be 2 years ago without thinking as she being of a certain age didnt pay tax. End of tax year she got a bill for £20 plus for tax she not paid that the charity claimed for in her name. I dont giftaid now ( neither does dh and no one else in our family) as a result as i dont like big brother watching me. Nothing beats being anon re charity!

jay55 Tue 16-Dec-14 20:54:04

I donate to st mungos but they're not north east. Lots of great program's for getting people on their feet though.

MrsPnut Tue 16-Dec-14 20:56:02

If you google domestic abuse services and your local town then a service should come up and they will have a phone number or email address. Contacting them to donate money will always be very welcome and a regular standing order even more so.

Changedmyusername Tue 16-Dec-14 21:01:07

Have a look at Buttle UK. They give grants to children and families in awful circumstances in the UK - things like beds, cookers and money to help families resettle after fleeing domestic violence. Every single penny donated goes on helping families in need - none of it goes on overheads, staffing of fundraising campaigns, so you know that 100% of your donation is guaranteed to reach the people who really need it.

FrankelandFilly Tue 16-Dec-14 21:01:43

Not in your region I know, but EACH (East Anglia's Children's Hospice's) is a great charity, I've donated to them myself in recent years.

SconeRhymesWithGone Tue 16-Dec-14 21:02:15

Domestic violence is one of the main causes of homelessness, so donating to women's refuge is also a donation for the homeless.

Figfog Tue 16-Dec-14 21:09:26

Changedmyusername- Buttle
UK looks like a great charity. However, I don't understand how they spend no money on admin, overheads of fundraising- can you explain more? They have a website, a social media presence, run challenge events and obviously have the pure admin side of processing donations. Is this all done for free/ by volunteers?

I don't wish to derail the thread but I would really like to make it clear that just because charities have overheads and invest in fundraising, this does not mean they are wasting donations. They are generating further income to support their programmes and charitable aims.

Thank you for bringing this charity to my attention though!

Changedmyusername Tue 16-Dec-14 21:17:52

Hi Figfog - they have a substantial endowment from their founder which along with their investments covers all admin/staffing/running costs - this leaves them in the really lucky position of being able to honestly hand on heart say that all donations go directly to grant aid. It's pretty unusual in this day and age and something they're rightfully proud of! They're a wonderful charity and for an organisation that does so much good they only have about 20 staff!

Changedmyusername Tue 16-Dec-14 21:24:36

Here's a link which explains more

(They helped my sister and nieces when they fled domestic violence so they have a special place in my heart and I admit I'm biased!)

Figfog Tue 16-Dec-14 21:27:15

Thanks Changedmyusername- that's really interesting. It is definitely unusual but what a great position to be in for them. I will definitely be looking more into them!

PhaedraIsMyName Tue 16-Dec-14 21:29:04

I know you mentioned you preferred secular but at this time of year you might want to consider the Salvation Army or the Cyrenians.

I don't think The Cyrenians are particularly pushy and the Salvation Army are much less than they used to be.

RaisingMen Tue 16-Dec-14 21:32:44

Shelter and Framework are both excellent charities x

londonrach Tue 16-Dec-14 21:39:31

Salvation army kept my grandfather family alive in 1930s hence why im here. I always drop something in their box as does everyone in my family! They usually outside a marks and spencer. Cant tell you how amazing they are. Then cancer research that found the medication that saved my mums life and the hospices thats £1000 machines make her life comfortable (along with the tea and magazines) now she is 5 years plus... One day we buy one of those machines for her to use at home. I think charity is personal!

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