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Touched By a Charity?

11 August 2008 at 3:14 pm
Staff Reporter
New research in the UK challenges the concept of just who is touched by a charity in their daily lives.

Staff Reporter | 11 August 2008 at 3:14 pm


Touched By a Charity?
11 August 2008 at 3:14 pm

New research in the UK challenges the concept of just who is touched by a charity in their daily lives.

Research by the Charities Aid Foundation should make us think twice before saying “I’m not a charity case” with 91% of the 1,001 UK adults surveyed saying they had not benefited from a charity in the past year.

However, when shown a list of charity run services and organisations, staggeringly nearly 6 out of 10 (58%) people said they have benefited from at least one of them in the past month alone.

The survey findings reveal a very wide gap between the perception of charities and the broad range of services and organisations they run.

Of those who have benefited from a charity service in the past month, more than two thirds (43%) have bought an item from a charity shop, nearly one fifth (19%) have visited a church or other charity run religious institution, and just under a fifth (18%) have visited a stately home or garden run by a charity.

Other ways in which thousands are regularly enjoying charity run services include visiting theatres, galleries and museums, getting advice from a charity or their website, and attending social meetings and events run by charities.

Nearly one fifth (18%) have used three or more of these charitable services in the past month and just under one in ten (9%) have used four or more.

The vast majority (85%) think that charities have an important role to play in society, yet when asked if they personally have benefited very few believe they have.

John Low, Chief Executive of the Charities Aid Foundation says the research challenges the commonly held view that charities are run for the few, not the many, and shows that most of us underestimate the broad role charities play in enhancing all our lives.

He says he hopes these findings will help people to think differently about supporting charities even in these tough economic times.

Bought an item from a charity shop


Visited a church or religious institution of charitable status


Visited a stately house or garden owned by a charity


Attended a social event or gathering hosted by a charity


Visited a charity run gallery or museum


Advice from a charity or information from a charity website


Attended an independent school or nursery of charitable status


Received medical care from a charity


Watched a production at a charity-run theatre


Ongoing support/care from a charity such as meals on wheels


Adopted a pet from a charity


Stayed in a hostel run by a charity


Bought or rented a property through a charitable housing association


Benefited from another type of charitable service


None of these


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