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Phone calls from charities after you've donated by text message

156 replies

CruCru · 08/05/2013 21:52

I have recently donated to some charities by text message (super convenient and I don't have to talk to a person). However, the salespeople charity donation people keep ringing me to try to get me to donate more. It puts me off donating. AIBU? Today I had four missed calls on my mobile and when I called them back, it was a recorded message from a charity.

OP posts:
Bricklestick · 09/05/2013 18:12

Charities do not swap phone numbers. It's illegal.

Sunnywithshowers · 09/05/2013 19:42

Bricklestick Charities do swap phone numbers but only if the person concerned has consented.

hackmum tell them you don't want them to call - believe me, they don't want to piss you off.

CruCru · 09/05/2013 19:46

Argh - three more missed calls this evening (was doing bath and bed). Right, going to turn the ring volume up and ask them to stop calling the next time they ring.

OP posts:
Bricklestick · 09/05/2013 19:49

I work for a big national charity (albeit one that doesn't do text appeals or hire chuggers) and I assure you that there is NO database of donors that gets swapped between charities.

However, some charities do buy databases from marketing companies which may have your details from other sources you've signed up to and not opted out of marketing consent for. I'll say it again: charities don't swap donor details.

Iaintdunnuffink · 09/05/2013 19:53

Yes, it's probably data bought from the same source.

Sunnywithshowers · 09/05/2013 20:06

Bricklestick specific charities do swap some donor data, however they use a specific product / supplier and won't swap data of people who don't want their info swapped. However, I agree that not all charities swap data, and those that do must have specific permission to do so.

RussiansOnTheSpree · 09/05/2013 20:14

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Pigsmummy · 09/05/2013 21:28

I too had a similar experience, soo pushy, calling early and late in the day. I will not donate by text again for this reason.

eccentrica · 09/05/2013 21:31

" Butchers. Fishermen. Why don't you enlighten us all as to exactly how those people are doing more valuable work than eg Macmillan Nurses?"

Where on earth did I say that? I said that they all do much more valuable work than highly paid executives working for charities. Try re-reading. I said nothing even resembling that, but feel free to make up more nonsense and then argue against it if it amuses you.

Why should people who work for a charity earn significantly less than people doing comparable jobs in the private sector?

er, because. it's. a. CHARITY. Because they are asking people for money for good causes and then taking a huge amount of it for their personal gain. This is not a difficult concept and it's frankly odd that you are pretending (I assume) not to understand it. Why, it's almost as if you take it as some sort of personal attack on what you do with your own life.

Why should anyone, ever volunteer any time or donate any money when they don't have to? Why is it ok for ordinary people to give up their time to stand around shaking a collection tin or delivering Meals on Wheels when they could be getting paid for that time in the private sector - working as a minicab driver perhaps? It appaers that the ordinary person in the street is prepared to forgo the chance to maximise their personal gain for the greater good. Clearly this doesn't apply to executives in big charities.

Your 'argument' is all over the place. You have no idea about my 'bitterness and resentment' - this is not about my emotions - nor about what I do or don't understand. Your posts are full of unwarranted rudeness, misfiring ad hominem attacks and patronising wank without once ever addressing the question of why people employed by a charity which asks for money from the public should consider it OK to take huge personal salaries.

Over and over again on this thread many people have expressed their discomfort with fat cats who are highly paid off the back of hard-up members of the public making charitable donations which are intended to go to good causes. You have ignored that. Simply repeating "oh you don't understand, you're so stupid, you don't understand how difficult it is for us them" doesn't win the argument or make your point. It rings very hollow when you won't address the simple question, which is NOT why someone working for a charity shouldn't get paid what they would in the private sector, but why would someone working for a charity think it's ok to get rich from people's charitable donations?

Which charity do you work for, by the way?

Rosa · 09/05/2013 21:38

When I donate if I get a mail shot , phone call or what ever then I stop and won't donate again. I was annoyed when shelterbox sent me a newsletter begging letter and told them what a waste of money and to spend my postage on helping people - they stopped. Try telling Unicef or Oxfam.

hobbknob · 09/05/2013 21:40

I had this and to be honest it's put me off donating by text again.

MaryMotherOfCheeses · 09/05/2013 22:16

I'm sorry to see this thread has become so shouty.

I also hate to see that donors are being put off by overly assertive and sometimes inept sales tactics.

What we never see on these threads is someone saying "A nice person came to my door and was really friendly, it was a charity I like and I've signed up for a direct debit. I feel happy about that"

Which does happen, but of course it doesn't get posted about.

Thankfully it happens more often than the complaints, which is why charities carry on doing it. So we must make sure that the complaints get fewer and fewer as more charities insist their agencies follow Fundraising Standards guidelines, and we can get on with doing the work that people want to see happen.

MrsHoarder · 10/05/2013 09:19

Yes Mary, but there's far more people left feeling harassed and guilty or signing up for a dd they felt pressured into. Doorstop sales are high pressure and involve trying to get people to close and sign when they might not be sure.

Just because its a charity and not double glazing/energy doesn't mean that everyone well like it.

mulranno · 10/05/2013 09:36

I was left very emotionally distressed after a call from Cancer Research. I had completed the Run for Life last year - raised loads etc. I did the polite - "I will think it through" when asked to donate monthly - they then went down another tack talking and asking leading questions specifically about ovarian cancer research - which my mother died from in a really horrific way. I found this very difficult - I did not want to talk about my mother death to a stranger - They had obviously googled me and seen the other fundraising efforts I do specifically for the ovarian cancer unit where my mother a family we run a charity golf day with my family which raises £20k each year.

jellybeans · 10/05/2013 09:54

Almost all the big charities seem to do this. It really annoys me. they pay thousands to get sales people to try get more money. I donate monthly with a few charities and often get emails such as 'by the time you read this 100 children will have starved'. I appreciate what they are trying to do but they are going about it the wrong way as it pisses many people off who are already making financial sacrifice to donate.

NinaHeart · 10/05/2013 10:13

I work as a fundraiser for a charity and am quite distressed to see this thread degenerating into an attack on those of us who work in the third sector, and I feel the need to defend our aims and practices.

Firstly, I absolutely understand those who have said they don't klike being pestered by phone calls. I can't comment on individual expereinces as the charity I work for does not do any telemarketing. But we might in the future, if we can show it brings in a good return on investment for us.

On to salaries. Do I earn a good salary? Depends on what you call good. it is roughly commensurate withy a teacher or nurse in the first levels of management - and I have been in the sector for 24 years and head up a full department. with responsibilty for budgets of over £1m. We have no marketing department, no communications team, no PR people - it's all down to me.

And perks (as mentioned upthread) Do I get health insurance, conferences, free travel etc. No. emphatically no, and I never have done.

What I DO do is to raise over a million pounds a year in order to find cures and treatments for some really horrible and life changing medical conditions. And that costs money but also benefits all of society. All of you and your families.

it would be fabulous if people just gave us money without us having to ask, but it doesn't happen that way.

Sunnywithshowers · 10/05/2013 12:12

Applauds Nina

Sunnywithshowers · 10/05/2013 12:12

mulranno I'm sorry for your experience, that's horrific.

Bricklestick · 10/05/2013 12:15

Well said, Nina. I'm an accountant for a national charity - accounting for charities is actually a lot more complex than for a lot of private companies, many of whom I have also worked for - and I get paid what would be considered a "good" salary by very many people.

It is, however, a lot less than I could earn (with my experience and qualifications) in a similar job that wasn't in the charity sector, say around 25% less than I could earn in a media company or something.

The simple fact (and it's a sad fact) is that if charities were to rely purely on volunteers to do the work that needs to be done then many charities wouldn't exist. They do need specialists, and specialists deserve to be paid. Likewise, charities still have bills to pay - insurance for those volunteers isn't free. They have to pay for rent, utilities, equipment, and they have to pay VAT too - they don't get everything for free just because they're charities.

You are never going to find a single charity anywhere that spends 100% of the funds it raises on its causes. It is, sadly, impossible. It costs money to run a charity, even a tiny one.

The government, at the moment, is trying to turn us into a "big society", where we all help each other without government funds being used. This means that (for example) medical charities are now increasingly taking over some of the functions of both the NHS and the Dept of Health at a time where donations are going down because of the economic downturn, and many charities have lost their government funding altogether. However, medical charities in particular can't just stop doing what they do because people lose their lives.

So, yes, charities are increasingly trying to raise more money from ordinary people, and yes, it can be irritating, but would you prefer charities sent you letters whining about how unfair it is that they have to do more now with less funds, and it's the governments fault? I wouldn't.

And frankly, charities only staffed by the people who can afford to work for "free" wouldn't be doing much good. Think about it.

Bricklestick · 10/05/2013 12:16

I'll say it again, the charities concerned would be horrifed by some of the stories told on here, so if you have a legitimate complaint about the way they fundraise: TELL THEM, I guarantee they'll stop it.

I've complained about chuggers myself.

Alibabaandthe40nappies · 10/05/2013 12:23

I had a phonecall from Barnardo's yesterday. I donate to them monthly and have done for about 15 years.

The bloke on the phone was wanting me to increase my direct debit, and I said that I didn't want to at this time - they aren't the only charity I donate to regularly and I also like to be able to make one off donations, which I explained.

He then started to regale me with tales of girls being passed around between men and raped multiple times, on that basis could I not see that more money was needed?
I absolutely blew my lid at him - because that could be seriously upsetting and triggering for anyone who has experienced abuse, and suggested that he go to his manager and that they review the script they were using for calls.
He told me that I was entitled to my opinion in a really angry tone.

I am really furious, and wondering whether to approach Barnardo's directly with a complaint.

TheDoctrineOfSnatch · 10/05/2013 12:26

I find the Samaritans and Camfed to be good charities that have never hassled me to increase my DD. Camfed does interesting email newsletters and occasionally runs special donation campaigns by email.

Just trying to balance the thread with some positives.

TheDoctrineOfSnatch · 10/05/2013 12:27

Ali - yes, I would complain.

silverten · 10/05/2013 12:31

My DH was told by the manager of a shop he'd donated to that they routinely ignored the box he'd ticked on the gift aid form for no direct contact, as it was worth their while to spam people for more donations (manager did not personally approve of this, which is probably why they told DH this).

So that'll be one charity that never receives another penny of donation from us ever again.

I expect they do the same thing with phone numbers.

Bricklestick · 10/05/2013 12:33

Silverten> You should report anything like that back to the charity, as they're breaking the law under those circumstances.

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