Successfully reported this slideshow.
We use your LinkedIn profile and activity data to personalize ads and to show you more relevant ads. You can change your ad preferences anytime.

What’s next on public trust and confidence in charities?

5,220 views

Published on

What we think needs to happen and our work so far

Published in: Government & Nonprofit
  • Be the first to comment

  • Be the first to like this

What’s next on public trust and confidence in charities?

  1. 1. WHAT’S NEXT ON PUBLIC TRUST AND CONFIDENCE IN CHARITIES? CHLOE STABLES, NCVO JULY 2016
  2. 2. THE STORY SO FAR… 2
  3. 3. 2014 2015 2016 Cup Trust scandal and subsequent Public Accounts Committee inquiry Comic Relief accused of investing in tobacco, alcohol and arms firms NAO report warns that the Charity Commission is failing to regulate charities effectively and is providing poor value for money. Public Administration Select Committee also highlights the case of the Plymouth Brethren Christian Church High profile Telegraph investigation into CEO pay triggers a parliamentary inquiry. Age UK criticised for its corporate partnership with E:on PACAC report into charity fundraising Telegraph story on True and Fair Foundation report on charity shops Daily Mail story into Didier Drogba foundation for failing to spend money on good causes Sun story on NEET Feet fundraising agency targeting vulnerable people 2013 NAO report into Big Society Network Charity Commission action on Oxfam’s perfect storm tweet IPPR criticised by Charity Commission for being too close to the Labour party Lobbying Act received royal assent after much debate about charities and their campaigning role Charity Commission investigation into links between charities and terrorism HSBC closes some Muslim groups' accounts Death of Olive Cooke and subsequent investigations Daily Mail investigation in case of Samuel Rae amid accusations of data trading Closure of Kids Company Sun investigation into CEO pay Times investigation and front page on CEO pay Times story on legacies: ‘charities cash in on relatives of the dead.’ Telegraph story on True and Fair Foundation report into charity effectiveness
  4. 4. 2016 HAS NOT BEEN AS QUIET AS SOME MIGHT HAVE HOPED… 4
  5. 5. 5
  6. 6. 6
  7. 7. 7
  8. 8. 8
  9. 9. 9
  10. 10. HOWEVER, CHARITIES ARE LISTENING TO PUBLIC CONCERNS AND WORKING HARD TO SHOW THE PUBLIC THAT THINGS ARE CHANGING.. 10
  11. 11. 11
  12. 12. 12
  13. 13. • Establishment of new Fundraising Regulator • Renewed code of fundraising good practice • Many charities are changing the way they fundraise – only contacting people that have expressly given their permission, introducing new supporter or donor charters, or putting in place better systems to oversee fundraising activity. • A new legal requirement to ensure they have the right policies in place re vulnerable people. • Review of governance code • Campaign in the autumn to focus on trusteeship standards CROSS-SECTOR ACTIVITY
  14. 14. UMBRELLA BODIES AND CHARITIES ARE COORDINATING QUICKER, ROBUST RESPONSES 14
  15. 15. BETTER COMMUNICATIONS • Better co-ordination of messages across umbrella bodies and charities • Narrative strand of Understanding Charities Group being taken forward by NCVO and Acevo partnership • Media strand of the Understanding Charities Group under Joe Saxton • Commission on the Donor Experience 15
  16. 16. 16
  17. 17. 17
  18. 18. “We have a new fundraising regulator that’s taking over responsibility for the code of conduct, and the fundraising community themselves are absolutely clear that they want to operate to the highest standards” “The really important question is not how low your overhead or your fundraising costs are, the really important question is, ‘How big is your impact?’ And that’s what donors should be asking all the time”
  19. 19. WHAT DOES THE RESEARCH TELL US? 19 Vicky Browning, CharityComms Julia Pitman, Britain Thinks
  20. 20. WHO WE SPOKE TO 2 groups with charity supporters 2 groups with non-charity supporters  5 women, 3 men  30-55  B/C1/C2  None to have donated a maximum of £25 to charity in the past 12 months  None to have a direct debit with any charity  Spread of newspaper readership  Reflects share of votes in 2015 election  Minimum of 2 BAME  5 women, 3 men  30-55  B/C1/C2  All to have donated minimum £100 to charity in the last 12 months  Minimum 2 to have a direct debit set up with at least one charity  Spread of newspaper readership  Reflects share of votes in 2015 election  Minimum 2 BAME
  21. 21. KEY INSIGHTS 1 The trust issue is real and must be addressed 2 Media coverage is confirming concerns, not creating them 3 4 Attempts to justify CEO pay only serve to increase anger 5 You can’t fix the reality by talking about the ideal Communicating collective impact is essential to restoring trust
  22. 22. The trust issue is real
  23. 23. PEOPLE RECOGNISE THE POSITIVE ROLE CHARITIES PLAY • Charities’ primary (and most valued) role is that of service provider • ‘Raising awareness’ was mentioned, but understanding of campaigning is limited • But people didn’t have clear examples of the impact of charities at their finger tips • Instead, most supporters said they donated to their chosen charities because of a personal connection • Either they themselves or a close friend or relative had experience of the cause “If charities weren’t there, lots of people wouldn’t get help.” Non Charity supporter “I support Rethink and Mind because I have experience with someone close to me having mental health issues.” Charity supporter
  24. 24. BUT THERE ARE SERIOUS CONCERNS ABOUT HOW CHARITIES OPERATE Charities are felt to have become too corporate • With advertising spend and CEO pay used as examples of this • Nostalgia for the old days when charity was simpler, more local and more fun • Sense that there are ‘too many’ charities today And are not transparent about how donations are spent Almost everyone had an experience of aggressive fundraising techniques “There are so many charities for one particular area.” Charity supporter ”My mum and my dad are being bombarded at the moment. They’ve hit a certain age. They get worried about the sad stories – I just tell them ‘no’” Non Charity supporter
  25. 25. CHARITY SUPPORTERS ARE PARTICULARLY FRUSTRATED • They harbour real doubts about whether their donation has any impact • Brought on by concerns about transparency • And exacerbated by stories in the media • And consider many charity fundraising techniques invasive and unethical • This includes ‘chugging’, door to door fundraising and wasted money on free ‘gifts’ such as personalised address labels • Eventually this will manifest itself • Already, some spoke of helping causes more directly, rather than donating “Street fundraising just should not be tolerated. I had a knock at half 9 last night – that’s not helpful. I pray I can walk down the street and just be left alone” Charity supporter “I’m always conscious of whether the money is actually going to charity. If it was a bit clearer to me or I had more faith in it then I probably would donate more than I do. I do hold back a bit” Charity supporter
  26. 26. Media coverage is confirming concerns, not driving them
  27. 27. FEW WERE ABLE TO CITE EXAMPLES OF MEDIA COVERAGE THEY HAD SEEN RECENTLY ABOUT CHARITIES • Many stated that the sector was getting ‘bad press’ at the moment • But when asked to mention specific stories, all groups struggled • Those stories that were mentioned focused on fundraising practices • Others in the group who hadn’t heard about these cases immediately drew comparisons with their own personal experience of this • The media are seen to be exposing bad practice, with charities ultimately to blame “The media are quick to expose. But if charities are doing something they shouldn’t then that should be exposed. It’s got to lie at the door of the people who are responsible for what’s going on.” Non Charity supporter
  28. 28. COVERAGE IS CONFIRMING RATHER THAN SHAPING PEOPLE’S VIEWS OF CHARITIES • People’s underlying suspicions about charities are brought to the fore • As well as their own negative experiences • Negative stories about charities are being received in a vacuum • With nothing about the positive impact of the sector to balance it out • Stories about the big charities are tarnishing the sector as a whole “It (media coverage) gives you a negative aspect because you like to think that what you are doing helps out the majority but at the back of your mind you think ‘is that what they are actually doing?” Non Charity Supporter
  29. 29. Attempts to justify CEO pay within the narrative only serve to increase anger
  30. 30. CEO PAY GOES ABOVE AND BEYOND THE PUBLIC’S VIEW OF WHAT IS ACCEPTABLE • The need for charities to have an experienced workforce requiring payment is accepted • Such as accountants, back office staff and experts in their field • But CEO pay is seen to be too high for what people feel is a public service role • CEOs are expected to take a pay cut from the private sector • CEO pay levels are a world away from the average persons’ salary • Attempting to justify it only serves to anger people further • People want to see change “It’s ok to get paid as long as it keeps in the ethos of what charities are there for. I do think Chief Exec pay stories are very damaging.” Non Charity Supporter “I don’t have a problem with people being paid – it’s the amount.” Non Charity Supporter
  31. 31. You can’t fix the reality by talking about the ideal • Unless people’s concerns are addressed, they won’t engage with a positive narrative about the sector • The sector needs to change its behaviour
  32. 32. THE PUBLIC’S IDEAS TO IMPROVE TRUST FOCUSED ON TRANSPARENCY AND IMPACT • Better monitoring, publishing accounts and an independent charity adjudicator were top ideas • Awareness of current methods and mechanisms is extremely low • Improving knowledge of how money is spent is key • People also felt charities should do far more to show their impact • Sport Relief and Comic Relief were mentioned as good examples • Non-supporters have no way of hearing about the impact of individual charities • Supporter communications don’t give a sense of the impact of the sector as a whole “You want to have confidence in them being transparent, knowing where your money goes – that’s the goal Non Charity Supporter “Show me a stat that clearly shows the difference being made [by charities].” Charity supporter
  33. 33. Communicating collective impact is essential
  34. 34. WE NEED TO BALANCE THE PUBLIC CONVERSATION ABOUT CHARITIES • The public have heard a slew of negative stories about the sector with nothing to balance them out • The sector needs to show it is addressing people’s concerns • There has been no real communication about how charities have responded to the fundraising scandals • And communicate its collective impact • Charities need to come together and find a way to quantify and communicate their impact
  35. 35. SOME RULES FOR BUILDING TRUST IN CHARITIES 1 Acknowledge concerns and communicate change People need to know charities have listened to their concerns , particularly about fundraising techniques, and that behaviour is changing Make it personal Talking about small, individual acts of charity speaks to what charities should be about and makes people feel good about charities 3 4 Demonstrate collective impact People need to see evidence that the sector as a whole is having an impact Promote transparency Proactively promote the fact that charities disclose a range of information about how they operate – and take steps to ensure this information is accessible2
  36. 36. THE NARRATIVE PROJECT VICKY BROWNING, CHARITYCOMMS JULIA PITMAN, BRITAIN THINKS 36
  37. 37. UNDERSTANDING CHARITIES GROUP OBJECTIVE To ensure that the public values charities and their contribution to society by increasing trust, confidence, knowledge and understanding of the sector
  38. 38. KEY CHALLENGE Charities have dominated the story: scrutiny on charities as institutions and how they work, rather than on the role in society they play, and the benefit to society they help provide
  39. 39. SOLUTION • Tell a story about people making the difference, not charities • Focus on the impact and benefit of charity to society, less on the organisations; how we are all touched by it, and benefit from it • Encourage the feeling that giving time, voice and money for social good and change, is a good, rewarding feeling • Explain, where necessary, how and why charities work the way they do
  40. 40. ABOUT THE NARRATIVE PROJECT • To develop an overarching brand narrative that outlines a set of value propositions that unites a diverse sector • To create a positive affirmation of the difference people make through both charity and charities
  41. 41. ABOUT THE NARRATIVE PROJECT • The narrative will be a tool for charities from which they will be able to draw down consistent responses to critical questions about how modern charities operate and demonstrate how their own impact contributes to the impact of the sector as a whole • It will enable us to come together as a sector to improve understanding of modern charities and how they operate
  42. 42. NARRATIVE PROJECT INPUT ActionAid Arthritis Research UK* Association of Chairs Barnardo’s British Heart Foundation* CAF CharityComms* DEC Friends of the Earth Guide Dogs Institute of Fundraising JDRF Marine Society and Sea Cadets MS Society* NPC NCVO* RSPCA Roald Dahl’s Marvellous Children’s Charity Scope Shelter Stroke Association (* = project funders)
  43. 43. RECOMMENDED NARRATIVE
  44. 44. Because of you, charities in the UK are making a difference to millions of lives in our country and across the world. They play a vital role in our society – and we all benefit. Every contribution, however big or small, matters. Whether volunteering, donating goods or money, sponsoring a friend in a marathon, attending a fundraising event, or spreading the word, charities harness people’s individual goodwill and combine it with the professional expertise and vision of others to create the biggest possible impact. Together, it all adds up to a lot of change. Charities want to make sure that their supporters and the wider public have 100% confidence in what they do, because ultimately they exist to serve you. That means being transparent about how donations are being spent and the impact they have made, responding to people’s concerns and operating to the highest standards. Charities, and all that they achieve, only exist thanks to their supporters and the wider public. Charities only make the difference they do, because of you.
  45. 45. HOW WILL WE TAKE THE NARRATIVE WORK FORWARD? CHLOE STABLES, NCVO 45
  46. 46. PEOPLE HAVE QUESTIONS ABOUT CHARITIES
  47. 47. THESE ARE THE ANSWERS THEY’RE GETTING
  48. 48. A PUBLIC FACING WEBSITE – ‘HOW CHARITIES WORK’ • A useful place to signpost people who have questions about the way charities work. • It will host explainers that charities can use in response to questions, e.g. on charitable expenditure • The site will evolve over time, adding content as necessary and responding to feedback • Soft launch in the summer
  49. 49. • Provide clear, authoritative information • Help people who are setting out to look for information • Inform reasonable, interested members of the public and others • Host explainers that charities can use in response to questions, e.g. on charitable expenditure • Show that we’re taking concerns seriously and trying to help people understand how we work WHAT THIS SITE… … CAN DO … CAN’T DO • Give loads of detailed information and explain every legal and financial nuance • Proactively reach millions of members of the public • Win round people who were never going to be happy
  50. 50. 53
  51. 51. FACTSHEETS FOR JOURNALISTS • Clear and concise information about charities • Including how charities are governed, the legal and regulatory framework they operate under and how to read charity accounts. • Will include how sections on how journalists can widen their pool of sources and who to contact for expert comment on charity stories. • Developed in partnership with the Charity Finance Group
  52. 52. WE NEED TO EXPLAIN HOW MODERN CHARITY HELPS PEOPLE MAKE A DIFFERENCE… THAT THE WORLD IS CHANGED BY CHARITY 55
  53. 53. 56
  54. 54. A TOOLKIT FOR CHARITIES • A communications toolkit bringing together: • research insights into what the public think about charities • the narrative framework for how we can talk to the public about modern charity • tested messages that resonate with the public in response to some of the common questions that charities face. • Advice on language to use/lose when talking to the public about salaries/governance/fundraising.
  55. 55. WE NEED CHARITIES TO HELP US GET THE MESSAGES OUT 58
  56. 56. CONSTRUCTIVE VOICES • Getting constructive stories about charities in the news • Creating a more receptive media environment for charities • Building relationships with journalists & editors • Offering a helpful resource to reporters • Providing another channel for pushing out stories • Building up bank of good will OBJECTIVES
  57. 57. CONSTRUCTIVE VOICES GUARDIAN BACKS CONSTRUCTIVE NEWS “I came back from the breakfast event and had a discussion with colleagues about what we thought about this whole agenda and how we could do it in a Guardian way”
  58. 58. CONSTRUCTIVE VOICES Charities Please keep them coming, we are very grateful and excited to be involved with Constructive Voices. We have had useful follow up with Huff Post, ITV, and Telegraph – all v interested in our stories. Thanks so much. It’s really exciting to receive these exclusive opportunities through Constructive Voices! Journalists Thanks – this sounds like a great resource! Wonderful idea EARLY FEEDBACK
  59. 59. Chloe Stables External Relations Manager NCVO Chloe.stables@ncvo.org.uk Vicky Browning Director Charity Comms Vicky@charitycomms.org.uk

×