Two-in-five Britons reduced their charitable donations in 2010

By agency reporter
December 28, 2010

More than half of Britons gave the same amount to charitable causes in 2010 as they did in 2009, but two in five reduced them, a new Angus Reid Public Opinion poll has found.

In the online survey of a representative national sample of 2,003 British adults, 71 per cent of respondents report making a donation to a non-profit organisation, whether in the form of cash, time or goods.

Three-in-four women (75 per cent) made a charitable contribution this year while only 68 per cent of men did so. Women were more likely to donate goods (36 per cent) than men (20 per cent) but both genders were equal in their preference for donating their time to charitable causes (20 per cent).

More than half of Britons (54 per cent) gave the same amount to non-profit organisations in 2010 as they did in 2009, while 39 per cent provided less this year and only seven per cent have increased their giving.

Of those who donated to a non-profit in 2010, one quarter (24 per cent) gave through a collection at their church, synagogue, mosque or other place of worship. Traditional direct mail campaigns generated 22 per cent of donations while contributions made directly to a charity through their website accounted for 21 per cent. Just six per cent of Britons elected to make their donations via SMS (text messaging).

Looking ahead to 2011, those in the younger bracket (18-34) feel they will be able to give more in 2011 (six per cent say “much more” and 15 per cent choose “slightly more”.). Almost one-in-four respondents (23 per cent) say they will not be able to give at all next year, with that sentiment being highest among Britons aged 35 to 54.

Three-in-five Britons (59 per cent) said they would give more to charitable organisations in 2011 if their own personal finances were in a better state. Throughout 2010, four-in-five Britons have consistently stated that the economic conditions in the country are “very poor” or “poor.”

Health care and children’s organisations are perceived as having the greatest needs for donors going into 2011 at 48 per cent each. Hunger and food charities are second in terms of focus for those planning to donate in 2011 (42 per cent), while 37 per cent of Britons think disaster relief will need help from donations next year. The arts and museums are the lowest priority for Britons looking to donate to non-profit orgsanisations, at only seven per cent.


Although the views expressed in this article do not necessarily represent the views of Ekklesia, the article may reflect Ekklesia's values. If you use Ekklesia's news briefings please consider making a donation to sponsor Ekklesia's work here.