Making the best of a bad situation

Published by Susan Robinson on 22 February 2018

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A brief look through charity news pages reveals somewhat of a bleak start to the year for the charity sector following a number of high profile “scandals”. At a time when charities need to rebuild public trust and restore the faith that was once placed in them, there have just been further setbacks. But can some charities use these high profile cases to their advantage? Whilst bigger and more reputable charities continue to make the news for the wrong reasons, could smaller charities capitalise on this opportunity?

A recent poll revealed that 35 percent of people are “less likely” to donate to humanitarian charities following the Oxfam investigation. It is unlikely that these people are suddenly less likely to donate altogether; instead they may try to find an alternative cause to support. They are likely to be looking for a charity they can trust and one that they can be assured will not be the next big news story. So where better to look than a charity local to home, a charity where you can visibly see its impact.

Smaller charities should seize on this as an opportunity to really engage with potential donors and build bridges with members of the public who may not have even been aware of their existence? Just like any every day purchase, people are becoming savvier with their money and want value for the cash they hand over; this is no different with charitable donations. Charities should, therefore, be shouting from the rooftops and making use of social media and other communication platforms to show what an incredible job they’re doing. Tell the world about the positive impact your charity is having on the local community. Contrary to what may be portrayed in recent press coverage, people want to see the positive impact charities have and want to share in the warm feeling of knowing it’s a charity they support that’s making that change.

As some of the larger charities continue to let down the charity sector and drag down its reputation, smaller charities can raise their heads above the parapet and shout about the great work they are doing without being ashamed of being part of this fantastic sector.

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