Giving ‘becoming less regular and more ad hoc’, survey suggests

Donors are increasingly interested in making “ad-hoc” one off donations rather than committing to regular giving, according to a snapshot survey.

The findings are based on data collected from eight charities with a combined supporter base of 10m by data firm Wood for Trees.

While Wood for Trees noted an increase in one off donations and community fundraising it also found that regular giving is down on previous years.

The firm’s analysis also suggests that fundraising income is continuing to recover following a spate of lockdowns amid the Covid pandemic.

Income was up by 9% between 2020 and 2021. The number of donors is also up, by 24%, over the same period.

The amount being donated by each supporter over several years is rising, from an average of £100 to £120 after three years backing the charity.

In addition, the survey found a “small but discernible” shift towards younger and less affluent donors but it found that givers continue to be more likely to be older and wealthier.

Changes in donor behaviour and demographics are being driven by an increase in digital and direct mail, say Wood for Trees.

“These latest results show the resilience of the sector and the continued generosity of the UK population,” said Wood for Trees managing director Jon Kelly.

“They do show some shifts in the way that people are giving with more people
giving in ad hoc ways rather than commitment of regular giving which had become standard in recent years.

“It is likely that this is partly down to the effects of the pandemic but also
perhaps an underlying social trend. The next few years will be interesting to see if these trends continue.”

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