Charities face generation time-bomb, as younger people lose the habit of giving says new report
Britain is facing a long-term crisis of giving – with new generations failing to match the generosity of people born in the inter-war years, according to new research published by the Charities Aid Foundation (CAF).
CAF is calling for urgent action to reverse the alarming trends highlighted in a new report by a leading academic.
The study by Professor Sarah Smith, of Bristol University, which was commissioned by CAF, warns that charities face a ‘donation deficit’ in the years to come if action is not taken to ensure that younger generations match the generosity of the inter-war generation (often referred to as the Silent Generation born between 1925 and 1945) and those born in the immediate post-war baby boom (born between 1945-1966).
Professor Smith, one of Britain’s leading experts on charitable giving, found that the gap between the donations made by the over-60s and under-30s has widened sharply during the last 30 years – raising fears that donations will fall when the inter-war Silent Generation and those born in the immediate post-war years pass away and members of Generation X (1965-1981) and Generation Y (1982-1999) reach retirement.
- Ensuring young people grow up giving – by making giving a central part of the National Curriculum and encouraging young people to take work experience and volunteer for charities.
- Encouraging young people to get involved in charities – by becoming trustees.
- Bringing Gift Aid into the digital age – by creating a national online Gift Aid registration scheme.
- Creating a strong culture of workplace giving – by reforming payroll giving and putting philanthropy at the heart of business.
- Introducing US-style ‘living legacies’ – which would help people to give their wealth to charity during their lifetimes rather than waiting to leave it to good causes in their will.