Spontaneous donations to UK charities likely to fall by about £150m this year, says survey

By Jenna Pudelek, Third Sector Online, 25 May 2012

Stephen Dilworth

Stephen Dilworth

Stephen Dilworth of the financial services group Foresters says a fall would be 'unsurprising' given the economic situation

Almost a third of people expect to give less to charity in spontaneous donations this year, a new survey suggests.

The poll of more than 2,000 UK adults, carried out by Wriglesworth Research for the financial services group Foresters, found that 29 per cent of respondents said they would have to reduce the amount they give because they were worse off than last year.

The survey, conducted in February and March, found the 90 per cent of respondents who made spontaneous donations to charity in 2011 gave an average of £72. Eightly-nine per cent of respondents said they would give to charity in 2012;  the average donation amount would be £69, based on what people said they would give.

Wriglesworth calculated that, if the predictions turned out to be accurate, spontaneous donations to UK charities would fall by about £150m to £2.9bn in 2012. Such donations include putting coins in collection tins and responding to TV appeals, and exclude planned giving such as direct debits.

Stephen Dilworth, UK membership director for Foresters, said: "The past few years have been financially tough for most people, yet Britons have continued to provide charities with a huge level of financial support, as shown by the billions of pounds donated in 2011. 

"However, as people continue to keep a careful eye on their finances over the coming year, it is unsurprising to see a slight fall in the amount that people estimate they will be able to give."

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