8 April 2020

In these unprecedented times that we find ourselves in due to the COVID-19 crisis, we have been monitoring public reactions to charitable giving as well as talking to charities about their concerns. As such, since 17th March, CAF has conducted a number of one-question surveys with charities (pulse surveys) to measure the mood as things very quickly evolve. These have been sent out by CAF via email to our charity clients with surveys completed quickly to obtain a snapshot.
In addition, as part of CAF’s ongoing polling work with YouGov, we used our late March survey to ask the general public questions around charitable giving and COVID-19. By way of context, this survey was carried out just after the UK Government introduced new 14 day self-isolation guidance for any household where someone was unwell, through to just after the Prime Minister gave his March 23rd televised address to the nation that brought in widespread lockdown measures.
We also conducted an overnight poll on 17 and 18 March to ask some benchmark questions.We hope this paper adds to the debate around charities at this time. We will continue to publish our research as we conduct it, and this will be available on our specially created Covid-19 research page.

Download the briefing paper

Extracts from our charities polling

Increasing demand

increased demand

Coping financially

When we asked charities what they most needed from Government to help see them through the Covid-19 outbreak, the majority answered unconditional cash grants (56%). This was followed by just under two-fifths saying each of Government mandating that other funders must relax any cash grants (18%) and unrestricting all restricted funding (18%). Around a quarter agree they will be accessing emergency grant funding.

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Extracts from our public polling

Helping in the community

The majority of people in Britain are ready to support their neighbours and NHS charities through the coronavirus pandemic, despite facing money worries of their own.   

More than half of people said they expect to help their neighbours or friends with shopping or errands (56%) or check on their vulnerable or elderly neighbours (51%)

helping_community (2)

Donating to charity

More than a third of people (34%) said they were very likely or somewhat likely to donate to local charities, while 4 in 10 (40%) said they very or somewhat likely to donate to NHS charities. More than four in 10 said they were very or somewhat likely to donate food or personal hygiene products to a food bank.


Government support for charities

The majority of people agree that the Government should provide financial support to charities if their income is affected by the Coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak.
56 percent agree government should help charity
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