Movember trials wearable contactless donation badges

The moustache-growing men's health campaign has issued 600 badges through which owners of smartphones can donate

This year’s Movember campaign introduced wearable contactless donation badges for the first time across the UK, Canada and Australia.

Moustachioed fundraisers have been given the option of the lapel badges to raise funds as the charity moves away from the declining market in cash collection. This is the first time the technique has been used, so 600 badges have been issued in a trial run.

A donor places their smartphone on a participant’s badge to donate to the campaign. Near-field communication contactless technology has been embedded in the wearable badges, which the fundraiser activates using an NFC-enabled phone.

Tapping a smartphone on the badge opens a webform on the device, from which the donor selects an amount and makes a payment using Apple Pay, Google pay or Paypal. Gift Aid can also be collected. Each badge is unique and any donations appear in that fundraiser’s online total.

The badges do not have a fundraising shelf life specific to Movember and donors will still be able to give once the month has ended.

The Movember Foundation worked with a design agency, Bond & Coyne, on the project, after discovering that participants were being put off asking friends and family for donations at a time when more charities were competing for people’s attention. The charity was also reacting to the decline in street giving highlighted by the Barclays report The Future of Giving earlier this year.

Bond & Coyne said it created the badges to remove the embarrassment factor, but added that it was also a response to the fast-moving donations environment.

"The technology in our smartphones is allowing charity fundraising to become easier than ever before," said Dan Ridge, campaign director at Bond & Coyne. "We’re really excited to push this technology, whether through wearable badges or on-street collecting. Soon contactless fundraising will be a pivotal tool for most charities."

Owen Sharp, chief executive of the Movember Foundation, added: "Movember started as a simple way to raise money and awareness for a good cause, something that anyone can take part in. The contactless badge is the next step. So many of our incredible supporters take part in amazing challenges, and our no-fuss badges take donating to a whole new level."

Movember is still running, so the Movember Foundation cannot yet say how much money has been raised by the badges.

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