Thursday, October 15, 2009

BMy Charity

I'm always getting emails from people raising money for charity, usually with a link to JustGiving, which enables you to give money online very easily.

Being the nasty cynical type, I always wonder where the money actually goes; so I wasn't too surprised to see that JustGiving takes 5% of your donation which helped pay their Chief Executive Zarine Kharas £170 000 last year.

A bit of searching about turned up BMyCharity who do exactly the same thing, but don't charge any commission; instead they appear to make their money through sponsorship and advertising (And I don't know what their boss earns either)

I don't have any connection to either of these two sites, so comments from anyone who has would be interesting.

16 comments:

Anonymous said...

Become a Cruel One like me. It takes ages and ages of trining, but I'm now able to walk past the donation collectors in front of Tesco's )with my head held HIGH). I can say No thanks, to people who come collecting at the door.
The only charity I give to is an animal one because nothing that an animal suffers can possibly be self-inflicted. I pay enough taxes to keep a few scroungers (mercyless breeders of chavvy offspring) in fags, booze, flatscreens and the latest mobile phones and I don't intend to give them any more than I legally have to. I opted out of giving to the Red Cross after they announced that they'd switch their cahritable work from OAP's to illegal immigrants in Calais. Not another penny from me to them. and I tell them that clearly when they come knocking.

Jen40 said...

Maybe I'm a bit naive, but I didn't realise that Just Giving took a commission from donations.

Anonymous said...

Cruel One, I like that. It sounds like some sort of Old God just waiting for the chance to eat the planet. Much better than my previous personal descriptor of Selfish Bastard.

Nothing operates for free Jen, admin costs, paperwork costs, filing costs, personnel costs. I'd never given it a lot of thought as to where they got the operating funds, % off the top sounds highly likely. Credit for those that can drum up enough advertising revenue though, that must take as much work as actually raising donations.

wonderfulforhisage said...

I believe that some tin rattlers are paid. I was told earlier in the year by a fellow queuer waiting to get into the Lords Test that the tin rattlers working the queue were paid. They were all young, pretty girls not the usual middle aged and elderly volunteers one might have expected. I can't say for sure that they were paid but it wouldn't surprise me.

The business man in me says that if a charity finds it can raise more funds nett by paying collectors they would be mad not to. The potential donor in me says, like a twenty first century Mr Grouser, "It ought not to be allowed".

For those not eligible for a State Pension, Mr Grouser was a character from BBC's Childrens' Hour in the forties.

Anonymous said...

So what *should* their chief exec be getting paid?

Boy on a bike said...

Pah! Only 5%? Try this charity for size:

http://boy-on-a-bike.blogspot.com/2009/06/actonaid-part.html

The top two managers cream off 19% of all public donations to pay themselves. As a result, a charity setup to "help the poor" makes two people quite rich.

Makes me want to vomit.

Central User said...

Bmycharity charges a £150 set-up fee. Justgiving charge a monthly fee of £15 plus their skim. The Charities Aid Foundation take a similar skim but for basic pages appear to charge no set-up or monthly fees.

It appears that if you are a small charity, dipping your toes into on-line fundraising for the first time, CAF may well be the best bet.

I've seen it stated that 83% of such on-line donations qualify for giftaid. As these sites do the admin, one has to expect to pay something (surely?). If donations increase, then I would have thought charity trustees just need to do their best with the maths to help them decide which way to go. Site branding will probably also have an impact.

Like Mr C, no connection with any of these sites, just someone who is currently deciding the best way to proceed for a small local charity.

Lilyofthefield said...

My friend worked for Oxfam and there were plenty of them on the make, her included.
My husband has direct debits to several charities, including the NSPCC. What exactly do they DO, other than show that same old ad every five minutes?
The only charity I dispense now is via direct request. Beggars do very well out of me.

robaker said...

Where did you get Zarine Kharas' earnings figure from?

Mosher said...

Thanks, Frank - opened my eyes. I don't give to any UK-based charities any more unless I can donate goods. Like one of the other commentors I concentrate on animal charities such as the Newcastle Cat & Dog Shelter where I can drop off cans of pet food. No way are the managers skimming off that!

I had a friend who worked for the RSPCA until she found out how much the top echelon took home. She quit in disgust.

Overseas it's a different kettle of fish. There are some *really* dodgy "orphanages" where virtually every penny that goes in lines the pockets of the people who run them.

Conversely, there are charities such as Blue Dragon Childrens Foundation (blatant plug) in Hanoi who spend virtually every penny on the children they're set up to help.

I guess if you're going to hand money over to someone it's a sad fact that you have to look into things to quite some depth before deciding if it's worth it.

Cabbage said...

Yuk. What a vile and dishonest site. Everything is set up to encourage you to just donate without reservations and without looking at the terms and conditions, which is dishonourable albeit legal. Even the final confirmation checkbox before making a donation says 'I agree to stick to the terms and conditions', not 'I have read the terms and conditions', which seems calculated to further encourage people to donate without reading the terms of service.

What may not be legal, on the other hand, is the claim in big text on the first page that "... your money goes straight to charity." Can someone who knows more about the law than me advise on whether this claim is technically fraudulent? I certainly read that as meaning "All your money goes straight to charity" - after all, quite what else could it mean? In the event that a court ruled that the phrase meant that all the money donated went to charity, presumably its presence on the site would be fraud?

Nickynockynoonoo said...

Cabbage,
This is how it works.

I had 2 young adults knocking at my door, with a collecting box. They were wearing tabards with RSPCA on them. They declared that every penny, donated goes straight to the charity. I asked them if they were volunteers. They said they worked through an agency.
I then asked how the agency got paid. I was told for every DD signed up, the agency invoiced the RSPCA £200 and the workers received £100 of that. They still insisted that donated money went straight to the charity. I suppose it does but what they do with it afterwards, is another matter.

Anonymous said...

Try reading Christopher Hitchens book, 'The Missionary Position" NO it's not about that!
It is an eye opener on saintly Mother Theresa and her activities. Makes JustGiving look like small fry

Anonymous said...

Sounds like this website is giving charities quite a good deal. How much do the chuggers in the High Street charge?

Brian, follower of Deornoth

Wendy said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Anonymous said...

I don't give to the RSPCA because they kill animals they don't like the look of (sorry, don't think will get rehomed) at the end of every month. I don't give to the NSPCC because they went anti-smacking (yet another group of people who confuse beating with smacking) at this rate, most of the charities will exclude themselves from my generosity, and I'll be free to become rich!