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Charities Should be More 'Supportive' in a Recession


31 August 2009 at 3:34 pm
Staff Reporter
The UK public is keener than ever for charities to be 'supportive', 'sympathetic' and 'responsive' in the current recession according to a new study by nfpSynergy, but the researchers say the demands pose an interesting challenge to an already struggling third sector.

Staff Reporter | 31 August 2009 at 3:34 pm


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Charities Should be More 'Supportive' in a Recession
31 August 2009 at 3:34 pm

The UK public is keener than ever for charities to be ‘supportive’, ‘sympathetic’ and ‘responsive’ in the current recession according to a new study by nfpSynergy, but the researchers say the demands pose an interesting challenge to an already struggling third sector.

These are the latest findings from research consultancy nfpSynergy which asked 2000 representative adult members of the British public to pick the 10 attributes they would most associate with their ‘ideal’ charity. 

While the top three ideal brand attributes (‘trustworthy’, ‘honest’ and ‘caring/compassionate’) have remained the same from pre-recession March 08 to post recession May 09, the three attributes that have experienced the greatest increase in public esteem over the same period are ‘supportive’, up by 16 percentage points;  ‘sympathetic’ up by 12 percentage points; and ‘responsive’, up by 9 percentage points.

Interestingly, an ideal charity’s being ‘reputable’, ‘positive’ and ‘visionary’ also became notably more desired over the same period; whereas ‘accountability’ has seemingly become notably less of a priority to the public – down from 49% in 2008 to 32% in 2009.

nfpSynergy’s researcher, Jonathan Baker says the new research suggests that, in these economically hard times, the British public wants its charities to ‘do their duty’ and be especially ‘supportive’ ,’sympathetic’ and ‘responsive’. 

However, Baker says some charities may deem this an unrealistic demand. 

He says the more courageous will see it as a fantastic opportunity to respond to the public’s plea. 

He says doubtless this will require a ‘positive’ outlook and a few ‘visionary’ solutions on the part of struggling charities – something, again the public says it particularly expects when the going gets rough 

The ‘Ideal Charity’ research can be downloaded at  www.nfpsynergy.net



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