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Women more likely to support charities than men says IoF & YouGov survey

Women more likely to support charities than men says IoF & YouGov survey

Women say they are more likely to donate to charity and support local causes than men, research from the and YouGov has found.

The IoF and YouGov surveyed more than 2,000 people on how likely they are to donate, what motivates them to give to charity, and the different positive actions they take after giving to good causes. The research found that women are more likely to have supported a charity in almost every activity asked about, including donating, with 54% of women saying they had given to a charity collection in the past 12 months, compared with 40% of men.

Women were also more likely to say that they supported small or local charities. with 51% of women reporting this, compared with 36% of men. Women were also more likely to say they have taken additional positive action as a result of donating: 35% of women said they spoke to friends about the charity or cause after donating, compared with 22% of men.

Different motivations behind donating to charity were also highlighted in the report. Women were more likely to say they would donate due to the charity being a cause they believed in: 37% of women compared with 31% of men. Women were also more likely than men to say they supported a charity because it had helped someone they know, at 24% compared to 17%.

Daniel Fluskey, Head of Policy and Research at the Institute of Fundraising at the IoF said:

“This research highlights the importance of fundraising for charities and the wider positive effect giving to charity has on an individual and society more widely. But within this we also see interesting differences in the way that women and men donate to and support the causes that they care about.

The jury is out on why women say that they do more to support charities and are more likely to support local causes than men. There is an opportunity here to encourage more men to step forward and support charitable causes.”

Prostate Cancer UK has already changed its approach to appeal to more men, James Beeby, Associate Director of Fundraising at Prostate Cancer UK said:

“Prostate cancer is the most common cancer in men but for a long time it lagged behind in terms of getting the funds and profile it needed. To turn this around four years ago we dramatically revamped our brand to make it unashamedly masculine to increase its appeal and relatability to our core audience. We also focused our efforts on reaching out to men where they already are – whether that’s at their local sports club, at the rotary, through work or at the pub. We are careful not to exclusively target men, or a particular type of man, but rather to show that we are about men in everything that we do.

“These efforts have really paid off, and have enabled us to see a threefold increase in income over the last 5 years. In addition, we actually see two-thirds of our income now coming from men – which is the exact opposite of the sector as a whole. From this experience I strongly believe that men are just as charitable as women, if engaged in the right way – so it’s just a case of meeting them in the right place and giving them the right opportunity.”

The final Insights into Fundraising report can be downloaded from the IoF site.

Melanie May is a journalist and copywriter specialising in writing both for and about the charity and marketing services sectors since 2001. She can be reached via

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