Almost half of respondents to a recent survey on giving were unable to name a local charity in their area.
Attitudes to Giving, a survey by the market research company ActionPoint Marketing Solutions, canvassed the views of 420 people from different age groups, income levels and ethnicities in spring this year.
When asked to name a local charity, only 51 per cent of respondents were able to do so. Hospices were the type of charity most likely to be named.
Eighty-five per cent said they had given to charity in the last year. Seventy-two per cent said they had given to a national charity and 56 per cent said they had given to a local charity.
Sixty-four per cent of respondents said their level of giving had stayed the same over the past two years, and 44 per cent of people who had made a will had included a donation to charity.
Penny Wylie, director of ActionPoint, said the lack of awareness of local charities made fundraising difficult.
"Once charities have a benchmark awareness level from which to measure, they will be able to assess whether their marketing activities are effective in ways other than just donations given," she said.