Why Some Charities Have Fewer and Fewer Regular Donors

Fewer and fewer people give money to a charity every month. Last year the World Wildlife Fund lost 63,000 regular donors. How is that possible? Are we no longer concerned about social problems?

In recent years, Greenpeace has lost 9,000 donors, Unicef ​​12,000 and OxfamNovib 16,000, according to figures published by de Volkskrant today.


“The world is changing,” says Plug. “People want to be involved in a different way, no more monthly, and no more years in a row for the same charity. They prefer to give concrete projects, rather than structurally, to organizations.”

The result: fewer regular donors.

“Planned, long-term and structural contributions, people are no longer waiting for that. We no longer want to be committed to anything.” Plug says about that: “The younger generation in particular wants to be involved differently.”

Consider: sponsoring a friend or family member for a good cause, or participating in the ALS City Swim yourself, or a running competition for the KWF.

No traditional donations

The WWF also concludes that the giving behavior has changed. Spokesperson Dylan de Gruijl: “Instead of the traditional donation, people want to donate more flexibly; digitally, more often with a donation for actions and campaigns in which people feel personally involved.” This is especially true for younger generations.

But what about the younger generation? Has it not just become more self-centered? Professor Bekkers thinks this is a ‘complicated question’. “Due to the falling donor figures, it is possible that you get the feeling that we are no longer socially involved.”

Are we insensitive?

And perhaps, Bekkers admits, there are also more and more people who are somewhat hardened or insensitive to misery, and think: yes, very annoying, but what should I do with it? “That is perhaps something that is not necessarily a generational offer, I think, but applies more to the whole of society.”

“But on the other hand, we also see that people no longer make structural donations, but if they give, they do give more.” And figures from, for example, the Central Bureau of Statistics also show that they are still involved. Bekkers says: “People really want to take action, do things themselves, start a movement.”

Climate March

Professor mentions the global climate march as an example. “Last year, that girl, Greta Thunberg, did it on her own. This year there were thousands of people in 150 countries . The awareness is greater, but people deal with it differently. They no longer want to feel helpless feel, and are no longer so: this is a good organization, we trust that, we put our money in it every month, and that was it. “

Yes, many charities are struggling with declining donor figures. But: “Alzheimer Nederland is seeing a steady increase in the number of donors.