Letter: Overwhelmed by calls for charity

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The Independent Online
Sir: As company secretary of a London-based company, I am inundated with phone calls from charitable organisations, to the extent that the daily work routine is seriously affected. Presumably, small charities are now having to fight for any non-lottery money available, but do they have to act like packs of hunting dogs?

Phoning companies up is now, it seems, a fine art. The phone rings and our receptionist announces the name of someone not recognised and not quoting a company reference. The call is taken and a jolly person at the other end, (usually with a Yorkshire/ Lancashire accent) says hello and asks if you are all right.

Preliminaries over, you are informed that they represent such and such a charity and that they don't want any money now, but "could they count on your support" in the compilation of a programme of some sort in which your firm will get a mention as a contributor.

All the charities are for good causes, but once you have said yes to one, you are overwhelmed with calls from others. I have now had to explain to all callers that due to this badgering we can no longer donate to anyone, which is a pity and a great loss for charities in general.

I cannot understand why all callers use exactly the same technique. Is there a central training ground for charity workers, which is based on the individual having a Northern accent (I have one myself), inquiring after your health, not wanting money and being very grateful?


Sutton, Surrey