Saving threatened habitats worldwide

Face to Face Fundraising

1 November, 2011 - 10:29 -- John Burton

Readers of my blog will know that I dislike 'chuggers' (Charity muggers -- the guys that stop you in the street and try and get you to sign a direct debit to a charity). I also dislike telephone fund-raising, and door to door fundraising (known in the trade as F2F, face to face). In fact I won't donate to charities if I find out they do any cold calling.

I was surprised to find out that it was Greenpeace that invented F2F in the 1990s, or so they claim, in Austria.  Why do I object to it?  My primary objection is that I believe that it undermines the whole principle that donating to a charity is essentially a voluntary action, by being coercive.  It relies on the recipients' feeling of guilt. I have never been very good at guilt, and am thick-skinned, particularly when it comes to church-related charities, but it seems a lot of people give in, at least temporarily.  But there is also the overwhelming evidence that it is a very wasteful form of fundraising, with many donors dropping out, often as many as 50%.

So why do charities do it? It appears from very simple mercenary motives. Because it does raise money, or so those who promote it are able to claim. But of course these claims do not take into account grumpy geezers like me. How many people get so fed up with aggressive fundraising that they stop supporting a charity? How much support have charities lost by using this method?

Does anyone else adopt the same stance as me?

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Submitted by Dominic Belfield on

Oh yes, John!

And now you've got me going - does anyone else resent the way "Childrens' Charities" now all too cynically use an all-too compliant media to garner extra cheap publicity?

You know the thing - produce a 'hard-hitting new report' based on a "survey" which purports to show how truly shocking this is or that may be. And oh wow! Isn't it terrible? Aren't we all so truly shocked?
Cue meedja talk-point: fill in a morning controversy slot with how shocked and terrible it all is and how shocked we all are by the shocking findings of today's gripping "survey".

Hey - juicy publicity - huh? And free.

So, salve your reeling conscience after being shocked and appalled by spraying a bit of loose cash at said charidee. Until the next "survey"....

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