I’ve spent most of my adult life trying to convince people to give regularly to charity, first as a door-to-door fundraiser (or ‘chugger’ as we are un-affectionately known!), then as a student in development studies and, most recently, as the Fundraising Coordinator at PHASE. The reason I do this (and, believe me, it isn’t easy) is because I really, truly believe that this is the very best way to support charities.
As the PHASE Fundraising Coordinator I am very lucky to be in regular contact with many of our supporters, and I am continually inspired and humbled by how much they care about PHASE and want our work to succeed. They help us in so many different ways and I am honoured to be part of this fantastic community. I have discussed regular giving with many of our supporters and one of the first questions I’m asked is ‘why?’
Why regular giving? Why is donating in this way better than a one-off donation?
There are lots of answers to this question but one of the main reasons is practical; if we know that our supporters will be donating regularly then we can be sure that we will always have income to fund our projects. We can plan further ahead and put these donations to the best possible use, ensuring that remote communities in Nepal will get the most from your gift.
Another huge benefit is that regular gifts are not allocated to specific work. PHASE is growing and attracting more grants from bigger funding organisations. Last year, for example, we received a sizable grant from the UK government Department for International Development (DFID). This is of course fantastic, and something that we are very proud of – it represents a seal of approval and demonstrates that our work is both successful and effective. However funding from grants and trusts is usually restricted. For instance, if we were to receive funding for an education project we could not then use those funds towards our health work – or an emergency (such as providing support following the earthquakes in April and May this year).
Regular giving ensures that, at any given time, we can support people in Nepal in the ways that they need us to the most and respond quickly to issues like earthquakes, landslides or staff shortages.
However the most important reason to donate regularly relates to you, our supporters. One-off donations are very warmly received but one of our key priorities is that our supporters are involved and connected to our work in Nepal. We want you to know that you play a vital role and that, without your help, we could not continue to offer health, education and livelihood opportunities to disadvantaged Himalayan communities.
People who give regularly tend to have a much stronger connection to PHASE and are more involved in our work. Our current regular givers have seen our organisation grow over the years and are aware of their personal contribution to this – we also keep all of our regular givers up to date with our work through newsletters and regular correspondence.
Regular giving really does make a world of difference. The work that we do is incredibly cost effective; to provide health care to about 5,000 people costs between just £6,000 and £15,000 per year (depending on how remote the location is). This is an average of just £2 per person per year! Therefore a donation of £10 per month could fund health care for 60 people; 20% of these will be children under 5 and more than half will be women. In the more remote areas our health workers save at least one child’s life per month by treating preventable diseases.
I know that setting up a regular gift is probably not at the top of your list of priorities, and I know that you may have some reservations, but if you can spare a moment and a few pounds a week then please join the team – you won’t regret it!
You can now set up your regular gift securely online through our website; simply click here.
A heartfelt thank you to all those who already donate regularly!