Charitable Donations Resist Credit Crunch

A recent European study conducted by Survey Sampling International (SSI) has found that even though consumers are considering ways to cut their spending, they are still willing to give to those in need.

According to the survey, the credit crunch does affect donating habits but only slightly. Three in four consumers still donate money or time to charities, with just one in ten consumers having stopped donating since the credit crunch and every fifth respondent giving less.

A fourth of consumers donate money at least once a month, while another 25% donate once a year. Young people prefer giving time instead of money.

The poll also revealed the UK to be the most charitable nation with 77% of respondents giving money to a good cause, closely followed by Spain (76%) and the Netherlands (72%). In comparison, only 66% of the French and 61% of the Germans said they donate money to charities. The charities respondents were most likely to donate money to, were the ones that directly help people, such as those for humanitarian and medical causes.

British consumers prefer the old fashioned collection box in the street, according to the findings, compared to being approached via alternative mediums such as email or post. More than 75% of international respondents think that charities should invest less in advertising and instead spend the money on the good cause. Two thirds of all respondents stated that advertising doesn't affect their decision to donate and more than 20% said that advertising even puts them off giving altogether.

Despite a global craze, celebrity ambassadors were having little influence on the success of a charity. Around 70% of all respondents said a well known representative doesn't affect their decision of donating to a charity, with 15% claiming that celebrities put them off donating.

"Public support, both financially and logistically, is essential to the success of many of today's charity causes. It is therefore encouraging that although people are cutting back on everyday expenditure, Europeans won't be scaling down their charitable donations, " says Volker Andresen, European Marketing Director at SSI. "But our survey also demonstrates that charities despite goodwill, still need to think about how they approach the public for help and need to therefore carefully plan their marketing campaigns."

"It's great to see that the British public continues to want to give to good causes despite the economic pressures. World AIDS Day on December 1st is vital for Positive East in securing public funds and to ensure we do not take the public's support for granted. We will be deploying a range of communication techniques to engage potential donors affected by the current economic climate, " says Joanna Southwell, Fundraising Manager at Positive East.

*SSI surveyed 1,650 consumers who are members of its OpinionWorld online communities in the UK (330), Spain (330), Germany (330), France (330) and The Netherlands (330).

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