1. ITV Report

Charities to hold talks on 'chugging' as bosses question value of face-to-face fundraising

Charities are questioning the value of face-to-face fundraising Photo:

Britain's biggest charities are to hold crisis talks over the future of 'chugging' - and whether it should be scrapped altogether.

The summit meeting has been convened in the wake of an investigation by The Sunday Telegraph into the practices of one of Britains biggest street fundraising companies.

The media has highlighted cases where potential donors have been approached by fundraisers who seemingly fail to meet the exacting standards that we insist on.

This has led to a wider debate about the value of face-to-face fundraising as a technique at all.

– IoFs chief executive, Peter Lewis

The findings have prompted the Institute of Fundraising (IoF) to host a summit on the future of face-to-face fundraising.

About 30 fundraising directors, from Britains biggest charities, will attend.

Many of the UKs largest charities use face-to-face fundraising and it can be extremely effective when it is done well and sensitively by an experienced agency.

Unfortunately, all activity of this kind is being tarred with the word 'chugging - which has become shorthand for aggressive 'in your face' fundraising by people on commission.

I said at the Select Committee hearing that some of the public dont like that sort of fundraising and they see it as disgraceful.

– Tom Hughes-Hallett, chief executive of Marie Curie Cancer Care

The IoFs chief executive, Peter Lewis, has said it was time to re-assess the public's experience of 'chugging'.

There is growing concern that for every donor recruited by chuggers, many more are put off, he added.

Charities will now look at introducing a 'kite-marked' training scheme for all street fundraisers, to ensure the highest standards are met.

What the summit meeting on 'chugging' will discuss

  • The future of face-to-face fundraising.
  • The future of 'chugging' - and whether it should be scrapped altogether.
  • The standardised training scheme for street fund raisers.
  • A government report last week suggesting that councils should be given the power to control number of chuggers.
  • A framework for the public to complain.