Cheques are more important to us than mobiles, says Mark Astarita

Next chair of the Institute of Fundraising says old technologies still have their place. An interview with him is the lead article in our Fundraising Extra

Mark Astarita
Mark Astarita

Cheques are more important to fundraisers than mobile phones, according to Mark Astarita, the chair designate of the Institute of Fundraising and director of fundraising at the British Red Cross.

Astarita, who will become chair of the IoF in July, said in an interview with Third Sector that technologies such as the internet could give small charities a "massive presence", but old technologies such as cheques were still important, especially for older donors.

It was important to use new devices and technologies to make it as easy as possible for people to give, he said, but he was "quite a fan of old technology – cheques are more important to us than mobiles".

He said new technology had "not revolutionised my world. I don’t think it will in the short term, but it’s all helpful."

Astarita said few charities would be able to say they had made back all the money they had spent developing their websites, including staff costs, through their online activity.

Fundraising would not change much over the next five to 10 years, he predicted. "Giving is a fundamental part of our society - it’s not going to disappear very soon," he said. "Devices come and go."

 See our Fundraising Extra Big Issue for related articles

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