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Charity Love survey shows trust down but majority no less likely to give

Charity Love survey shows trust down but majority no less likely to give

The majority of people plan to give the same or more to charity despite the negative headlines of the past year, but many charities less according to commissioned by Killer Creative.

The Love Charity 2018 survey, carried out by YouGov, questioned 2,170 adults, and found that 61% of respondents believe they are no less likely to give to good causes, with 17% expressing a desire to ‘give more’. However, overall 45% of people say they now have trust issues with charities, with 54% of the over 55s and 35% of the under 24s reporting a decline in trust levels.

The survey looked at people’s emotional ties to charity and how their feelings manifest themselves. According to findings, while 66% of people say they don’t care how charities ‘raise their funds’, how charities spend their donations is of concern to 71% of those who expressed a decline in trust for charities. Media headlines influenced 64% of people whose trust has declined, as well as wages of staff members (63%), aggressive fundraising (59%) and concern over advertising costs (46%).

The findings back calls for greater transparency from charities, with 87% of the public saying they would like at least one significant piece of information about a charity that they are going to support, including details of where the money goes (77%) , how much is spent on the cause (66%) and details of the impact a charity is having (60%).

Information people want charities to provide:

  • Details of where money goes: 77% pf people
  • Proportion of money spent on cause: 66%
  • Details of impact charity is having: 60%
  • How it raises its funds: 34%
  • Pay and diversity info: 24%
  • Complaints history: 22%
  • Other ways I can support: 18%
  • Number of employees: 13%
  • Don’t know: 7%
  • None: 6%

However, the survey also reveals that 58% of the UK population proclaim to love at least one of the top 30 UK charities, with Macmillan Cancer Support, Cancer Research UK, Guide Dogs for the Blind, Dogs Trust, and the RSPCA topping the list.

Donation levels have also largely stayed the same or increased, with 61% saying there had been no change in the amount they give, and 17% saying they were giving more. 14% said they were giving less. Levels of donations from the young have increased more than the average, with 21% of 18-24 year olds professing to give more, and 18% of 25-34 year olds doing the same.

Rob Alcroft, COO of Killer Creative, said:

“The manner in which different age groups, particularly the young and old, are susceptible to forces that erode trust in charities is important news for the sector. Over the past 12 months, the charity sector has reeled from a series of high-profile scandals. This has affected the many, but represented the actions of few. The good news is that the next generation of donors are less affected by negative elements that erode trust; and indeed appear to be giving more.”

“There is a clear link between the trust people have for charities, the love that they feel for them, and the transparency of the organisation. With an over-whelming indication that transparency is key to answering public concerns, it is clear that those charities topping our ‘most loved’ list are getting this right, and others can learn from it.”

The full survey results can be read on the Love Charity 2018 microsite.

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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