Give More philanthropy drive extended after attracting fewer than 15,000 pledges

Campaign set a target of 500,000 sign-ups, but many people are reluctant to commit without being sure they can follow through, says director Tamar Ghosh

Tamar Ghosh
Tamar Ghosh

The Give More campaign has been extended until the end of the year after it gained only 14,547 pledges as of today, against a target of 500,000.

The campaign, launched in April last year, was funded by £1m from the Pears Foundation. It asks people to sign a pledge on its website to give more money, time and energy to good causes. It was originally planned to run for 12 months.

Tamar Ghosh, director of the campaign, told Third Sector that the appeal would be extended until the end of the year in an attempt to get more pledges. But she said reaching the target of 500,000 would not be possible unless the campaign could grab the headlines in a way it has not done so far.

She blamed a crowded news agenda, including the Diamond Jubilee celebrations and the Olympic Games, for a slow start to the campaign. She said it had started to take off this year, thanks to increasing public awareness of the difficulties people are facing and the effects of public sector cuts.

Ghosh said the campaign’s four-strong team had been concerned that people would pledge but not follow through. "But it’s actually been the opposite," she said. "People say ‘I want to, but I want to make sure I can fulfil it’."

To address this problem, throughout September the campaign will attempt to help sign-ups to see their pledges through by offering opportunities to volunteer or make donations through the site.

The campaign has signed up 80 charity and business partners so far, including Cancer Research UK and BT.

"The most important thing for us is that it has got people thinking about giving and prompted hundreds of thousands of conversations that people would not have had about giving and the causes closest to them," said Ghosh.

"We were hoping the need in communities and awareness of it would help the message spread quite quickly, and people would understand the urgency and make that pledge."

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