Talk about fundraising, IoF chief tells the government

Peter Lewis says if the government is cutting public spending it has to understand the need for charities to raise money from corporate and other sources

Peter Lewis
Peter Lewis

The government needs to talk about fundraising as well as giving and philanthropy, Peter Lewis, chief of the Institute of Fundraising, told delegates at the Payroll Giving Conference.

Speaking at the event, organised by the IoF’s Payroll Giving Special Interest Group and held at the Home Office in London today, Lewis said that the government needed to support charities to ask for more money if it wanted people to give more.

"Government policy-makers and politicians still don’t really get that if we want more money to go to charities, charities need to ask more and ask better," he said. "The government continues to talk about giving and philanthropy rather than about fundraising."

Lewis was asked by an audience member whether he thought the government felt conflicted when talking about fundraising.

He said there were sensitivities around the government cutting spending while at the same time telling the general public they needed to fill the gap.

"Public spending is going to go down – we are only at the beginning of the cuts," he said. "Figures from the National Council for Voluntary Organisations found there is £1.9bn less coming into charities over the next three years.

"If charities are going to continue to deliver the same services, they need to be able to raise more money from corporates and other sources."

Lewis said the sector needed to keep repeating the basic principle of fundraising and the need to make the ‘ask’ to get the message across to ministers and the general public.

He said the IoF would continue to lobby government for the fundamental change that would improve the take-up of payroll giving.

Jenna Pudelek

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