Number of households using charities falls in 2018, report finds

The number of households using charities has dropped in the last year, a new report published by the Charities Aid Foundation (CAF) has revealed.

CAF’s report, Charity Street III, which looks at the ways in which people and households use charities' services, has found the overall number of households using charities has fallen by 9 per cent since 2016, when the last report was published.

This year’s findings showed the number of households has dropped down to 74% from 83% in 2016, raising concerns about the public’s knowledge of the services charities from around UK can and do provide.

Figures also found nine in 10 households reported having used a charities service at some point – a drop from the 98 per cent reported in 2016.

Furthermore, half (50%) of households have used a charity service in the past month, down slightly from 53% in 2016 but in line with 51% in 2014.

The report also revealed that three in 10 households were unaware that the service they, or someone else living in their house, had used was provided to them by a charity.

However, those who do use charities appear to use charities more frequently – those that reported using charities in the past year used 3.8 services, compared to 3.0 services in 2016 and 2014 when the previous reports were published.

Commenting on the findings, CAF chief executive, Sir John Low said: “The range of things that our great charities do is amazing, as is the fact that virtually all of us have used them in one way or another over the years.

“Shockingly though, many of us simply don’t realise that we are benefitting from the work of charities and are supported by generous donations of time and money made by people up and down the land.

“Around one in three people simply do not realise that the things they might take for granted are provided by one of the tens of thousands of charities across the country. That is something all of us in charities need to change.”

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