by Joanne Sopala
Director of Fundraising and Marketing, MS Trust
Today’s Mail Online features an interesting article on how charities have had to adapt during the recession and how people can help.
With everyone tightening their belts, it is not surprising that many charities have seen their income drop, but it might surprise people to learn that the overall amount of money donated to charities has actually shrunk by £1billion. We are used to hearing about the big successes; Children in Need, Comic and Sport Relief still seem to be able to generate huge sums during their television extravaganzas. But organisations like the MS Trust, which don’t have a high media profile or celebrity endorsement, are struggling with reduced incomes at a time when more and more people need our help.
The number of people contacting us for help and support in the last year has gone up by over 30%, proving how necessary our work is. At the same time, our income has decreased by 10%, resulting in us having to make some difficult decisions such as postponing certain projects in order to meet the demand on our enquiry service.
The Mail Online article talks about a number of ways people can maintain their charitable giving, even when times are tough, such as ensuring we can claim Gift Aid on all donations. It also talks about leaving gifts in wills and regular donations which help charities plan for the future.
We recognise times are hard for all of us, but if you would like to help, please take the time to visit our fundraising pages or get in touch with us to see how you can get involved. As well as making a donation, or taking part in a fundraising event, there are many simple ideas, for example signing up to the new MS Trust Lottery, buying MS Trust Christmas cards and shopping at your favourite stores via our website.
If you don’t think you can help now, but you are considering leaving a gift to us in the future, you can download our legacy factsheet from our website, or call us to request a copy.
A big thank you to everyone who has already donated, run, trekked, cycled, crafted, baked or collected for the MS Trust this year! Your support really makes a difference to our ability to make life better for everybody affected by MS.