21 Jun 2017

Small Charity Week: Give More to Small Charities

 SCC blog

With Small Charity Week upon us, I have been thinking about the scale of work these organisations undertake every day and what more can be done to help this important sector of society.

Over the last year, in my role as Head of MyDonate at BT, I have been constantly reminded of the enormous difference that small charities make in the UK. While big charities can influence national policy, do major research and communicate with the masses, small charities are free from bureaucracy and buoyed by their knowledge of local communities can be flexible and provide immediate support to individuals and families in crisis, when it is needed. I really believe that the impact they have shouldn’t be overlooked or underestimated.

With the current socio-economic climate, it has become clear that small charities are under increasing financial pressure. The Charities Commission reports that over 75% of UK charities are ‘small:’ they have incomes of less than £100,000 and over half of these incomes of less than £10,000. It’s essential that small charities are given the support to increase their available funds.


In March, the House of Lords Select Committee on Charities published its report, “Stronger Charities for a Stronger Society” which recognised that not only has Government income to the charity sector fallen in absolute terms, but that the replacement of contracts by grants has significantly disadvantaged small charities. These smaller charities do not have the resources to compete with larger organisations and as a result struggle to bid for large scale tenders. Consequently, small charities are being forced to find innovative ways to generate income.

Online fundraising is increasing and MyDonate is proving popular with small charities because they are finding it offers some distinctive advantages over other platforms. The reasons are best articulated by the users themselves:

“We always choose to use MyDonate precisely because all the funds raised get through to our work,” says Jason Leonard, former England Rugby Union International and founder of the ATLAS Foundation. “It's a great platform. It's been a quick, simple, transparent way to create funds for events and for projects. It has certainly helped us grow rapidly. We only wish MyDonate was all over the world alongside us.”

“MyDonate has been a great online fundraising partner for us. The main benefit for me is that BT takes zero commission as this makes a massive difference to the children. This extra money going directly to the cause could mean an extra piece of equipment for a child, or paying for a support worker to spend an extra hour with a child after school. We strive to change the lives of our Little Heroes and MyDonate helps us achieve this.” Ben Wootton, co-founder, Little Rascals Foundation

In a recent report by the FSI – FSI Small Charity Index: Taking the Pulse of the Small Charity Sector, indicated that charity income could be flat-lining and suggested small charities would benefit from better articulating their messages online as well as offer incentives to potential supporters and donors. However, BT recognises that small charities may lack the technical knowledge and expertise to do this and therefore provide charities that register on MyDonate, with the following benefits:

  • A dedicated, free-to-use customer services team that charities can contact via email, live chat or telephone and that provides a free-to-use advice line
  • Access to the BT Tower for special fundraising or donor events including stair climbs, afternoon teas and brunches
  • Opportunity to offer BT-related prizes use for auctions and competitions such as tickets to BT sponsored sporting events
  • The opportunity to promote the charity across MyDonate social media channels and on the BT.com site and social media channels, to expose it to more potential fundraisers
  • Access to BT.com advertising space
  • Involvement in promotional films distributed across the BT Network, raising awareness of a charity

So, during Small Charity Week, if you are looking to start fundraising online or want more from and for your fundraising campaign why not give the team at MyDonate a call on 0845 608 9922 or speak to an online advisor here on Live Chat? They will be delighted to offer you advice, support and a robust, free-to-use fundraising platform.  

MyDonate is not responsible for the content fundraisers post on their pages, but if you see something you feel is offensive or inappropriate, please let us know