More than 3,500 bags of items were donated in five hours to Cancer Research UK charity shops through uberGIVING on 2 June.
The initiative took place in ten UK cities and donations given via uberGIVING included a piano, a guitar, a brand-new tablet, TV sets and a full set of living room furniture. More unusual items donated included a Nintendo, circus stilts and a breast pump, with over 1,400 collections taking place in total, and London, Manchester and Leeds giving the most.
A survey of 2,000 people by Uber suggests that while people in the UK give an average of £60.27 to charity annually, they could increase their donation value tenfold if they gave their spare goods to charity shops. It suggests that in the UK, people are sitting on £605 in unwanted and unused items that could be given to charity, and that if all of Britain’s households sent their spare goods to charity shops, they could raise an extra £16bn for good causes.
When they do have a clear out, the survey found, 28% throw unwanted items in the bin, while 21% take them to the tip. Among the most common spare items were old smartphones with 41% having an old handset they could give away, old televisions (42%), old laptops (39%), power tools (35%) and golf clubs (16%). The average UK consumer also has four DVDs, five books, five CDs and five items of clothing they could happily part with.
Tom Elvidge, General Manager of Uber in the UK, said:
“UberGIVING is one of our favourite initiatives and is the perfect opportunity for people to give items to charity and let Uber do the work. Many people are unable to get to a convenient local charity shop due to busy schedules, yet have lots of unwanted items taking up space. We are proud that Uber can step in and be of service.”
Caro Evans, director of partnerships at Cancer Research UK, added:
“At Cancer Research UK, we rely entirely on the generosity of the public to fund our life-saving research, and donations to our shops are an absolutely vital part of our fundraising. We’re really excited to be working with Uber on this initiative. Cancer Research UK has nearly 600 shops across the UK so finding new and imaginative ways for people to donate their unwanted items is really exciting.”