Charity donations still suffering from recession

Donations to charity increased last year but still remain well below their pre-recession levels, research showed today.

Britons gave £10.6 billion to good causes in 2009, £400 million more than during the previous year, but still well down on the pre-recession peak of £11.3 billion, according to the Charities Aid Foundation and the National Council for Voluntary Organisations.



There was also a slight increase in the number of people who gave money on a regular basis, with this rising by 2% to 56%.



Cash remains the most popular way of giving money to charity, accounting for 50% of all donations, followed by direct debit at 29%, buying goods from charities at 25% and buying raffle tickets from them at 20%.



But only 40% of people use Gift Aid when they give to charity, under which the charity can reclaim basic rate income tax on the donation, broadly unchanged from the previous year.



The Charities Aid Foundation estimates that £750 million is lost each year through people not taking advantage of the scheme.



John Low, chief executive of the Charities Aid Foundation, said: "Many charities are very concerned about their funding in the coming year ranging from those who help the homeless and unemployed to museums and galleries.



"The best thing taxpayers can do to support their favourite causes at no extra cost to themselves is to tick the Gift Aid box. If everybody used Gift Aid next year donations would return to pre-recession levels."



Medical research charities continue to be the most popular good causes, accounting for 32% of all donations by number and 17% by value.



They are followed by charities which help children and young people at 25% of donations by number, and overseas aid at 24%, up from just 15% to 16% during the previous three years.



Sir Stuart Etherington, chief executive of the National Council for Voluntary Organisations, said: "This research is a welcome reminder of the British public's willingness to help those in need, even when they are under significant financial pressures.



"However, with looming departmental spending cuts this is no time for complacency and charities will need to think carefully about how to maximise giving in the unpredictable times ahead."



GfK NOP questioned 1,005 people during January.

Start your day with The Independent, sign up for daily news emails
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
ebooks
ebooksA celebration of British elections
  • Get to the point
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Guru Careers: Software Engineer / Software Developer

£40-50K: Guru Careers: We are seeking an experienced Software Engineer / Softw...

Ashdown Group: Trainee Consultant - Surrey/ South West London

£22000 per annum + pension,bonus,career progression: Ashdown Group: An establi...

Ashdown Group: Trainee Consultant - Surrey / South West London

£22000 per annum + pension,bonus,career progression: Ashdown Group: An establi...

Ashdown Group: Recruitment Consultant / Account Manager - Surrey / SW London

£40000 per annum + realistic targets: Ashdown Group: A thriving recruitment co...

Day In a Page

Fishing for votes with Nigel Farage: The Ukip leader shows how he can work an audience as he casts his line to the disaffected of Grimsby

Fishing is on Nigel Farage's mind

Ukip leader casts a line to the disaffected
Who is bombing whom in the Middle East? It's amazing they don't all hit each other

Who is bombing whom in the Middle East?

Robert Fisk untangles the countries and factions
China's influence on fashion: At the top of the game both creatively and commercially

China's influence on fashion

At the top of the game both creatively and commercially
Lord O’Donnell: Former cabinet secretary on the election and life away from the levers of power

The man known as GOD has a reputation for getting the job done

Lord O'Donnell's three principles of rule
Rainbow shades: It's all bright on the night

Rainbow shades

It's all bright on the night
'It was first time I had ever tasted chocolate. I kept a piece, and when Amsterdam was liberated, I gave it to the first Allied soldier I saw'

Bread from heaven

Dutch survivors thank RAF for World War II drop that saved millions
Britain will be 'run for the wealthy and powerful' if Tories retain power - Labour

How 'the Axe' helped Labour

UK will be 'run for the wealthy and powerful' if Tories retain power
Rare and exclusive video shows the horrific price paid by activists for challenging the rule of jihadist extremists in Syria

The price to be paid for challenging the rule of extremists

A revolution now 'consuming its own children'
Welcome to the world of Megagames

Welcome to the world of Megagames

300 players take part in Watch the Skies! board game in London
'Nymphomaniac' actress reveals what it was really like to star in one of the most explicit films ever

Charlotte Gainsbourg on 'Nymphomaniac'

Starring in one of the most explicit films ever
Robert Fisk in Abu Dhabi: The Emirates' out-of-sight migrant workers helping to build the dream projects of its rulers

Robert Fisk in Abu Dhabi

The Emirates' out-of-sight migrant workers helping to build the dream projects of its rulers
Vince Cable interview: Charging fees for employment tribunals was 'a very bad move'

Vince Cable exclusive interview

Charging fees for employment tribunals was 'a very bad move'
Iwan Rheon interview: Game of Thrones star returns to his Welsh roots to record debut album

Iwan Rheon is returning to his Welsh roots

Rheon is best known for his role as the Bastard of Bolton. It's gruelling playing a sadistic torturer, he tells Craig McLean, but it hasn't stopped him recording an album of Welsh psychedelia
Morne Hardenberg interview: Cameraman for BBC's upcoming show Shark on filming the ocean's most dangerous predator

It's time for my close-up

Meet the man who films great whites for a living
Increasing numbers of homeless people in America keep their mobile phones on the streets

Homeless people keep mobile phones

A homeless person with a smartphone is a common sight in the US. And that's creating a network where the 'hobo' community can share information - and fight stigma - like never before