INSTITUTE OF FUNDRAISING: Member viewpoint - There is little incentive for smaller charities to promote payroll giving

Fleur Greenwood, head of personal giving of Action Research

I believe that Tina Steele's denouncement of charities as "apathetic" in her Member Viewpoint "Promotion of payroll giving is a win-win situation for charities" (Third Sector, 12 February) is misrepresentative of the sector.

For those who have read the report Payroll Giving: Big Opportunities, Big Obstacles by nfpSynergy, the major problem outlined seems to be that there are eight leading players in the market receiving more than £5 million a year from payroll giving. I might be presumptuous in assuming that these are the eight big brand players but, in any case, we need to address why these charities are dominating the market place. Until this balance is re-addressed, it is frankly not worth the rest of us putting much time in to promoting payroll as the returns are too small.

Action Research has been active in the area of payroll giving since 1996 and has so far recruited 7,000 new donors. But we are finding it more and more difficult to recruit new donors and to spend our budget in this field. Maybe we need to look at a more targeted approach that helps split the cake evenly.

There is also an increasing problem of getting into corporations and a lack of understanding about what a payroll-giving scheme is, what it entails and how it can benefit them. Could we not look at a nationwide campaign to all companies to promote this vital form of tax-effective giving?

The Giving Campaign should be focusing on promoting the work of charities, overcoming the public's distrust and changing attitudes to giving. I would like to see it doing this rather than laying charges of apathy at our door.

- The Institute welcomes Viewpoint articles from its members. Please email the membership manager (Membership@institute-of-fundraising.org.uk).

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