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Online fundraising can deliver during post strike

06 November 2009

virginmoneygiving.com advises charities to move online

Online fundraising sites are preparing for a rise in donations as the nationwide Royal Mail strikes continue to severely damage charity fundraising, virginmoneygiving.com says.

Up to 25 million items of post are estimated to have been delayed and leading charities have already warned that income has been hit by the postal strikes.

Two more nationwide strikes are planned for Friday November 6th and Monday November 9th and talks between Royal Mail and the Communication Workers’ Union on settling the dispute are ongoing with more stoppages planned.

Charities report general fundraising and publicising of events are the major casualties of the postal dispute while Christmas card sales and catalogue distribution is also being hit.

Research by Virgin Money Giving among charities and fundraisers shows online giving is potentially more efficient than traditional sponsorship forms and collection tins and can increase the use of Gift Aid. However charities, who already receive around £150 million through online giving a year, wanted to see increased reliability and functionality from online giving services - and crucially, lower costs.

Joanna Barnett, executive director of virginmoneygiving.com, said: “The postal strike is adding to the strain on charities and is particularly damaging because it is hitting Christmas fundraising drives.

“Direct mail and fundraising through the post will remain important for charities and a resolution to the strikes cannot come soon enough. But we would urge all organisations to strengthen their online capacity not just as a crisis measure but as a fundamental part of their fundraising strategy.”

virginmoneygiving.com, a not-for-profit business, which is already backed by hundreds of major charities, officially opened to all fundraisers for all charity events across the country in October.

Virgin Money has invested over £3million in the launch, using its experience as a financial services business to build the hi-tech website. Virgin Money Giving ensures card payments are processed as securely as possible and offers charities state-of-the-art reporting tools to help them maximise the efficiency of their online fundraising efforts.

virginmoneygiving.com, which is free for fundraisers, charges a flat £100 + VAT registration fee for charities and a 2% fee on all donations before Gift Aid which means for every £10 donation charities will receive £12.46.

As a not-for-profit profit business Virgin Money Giving charges charities the minimum fees needed to cover the running costs of the site. Any money left over after covering operating costs will go towards reducing fees further or improving services for fundraisers and charities.

virginmoneygiving.com is the official sponsorship website of the Virgin London Marathon, Royal Parks Half Marathon and Sony ‘Run to the Beat’

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For further information:-

Scott Mowbray / Grant Bather at the Virgin Money Press Office
scott.mowbray@virginmoney.com / grant.bather@virginmoney.com
0207 111 1012

Brandon Stockwell / Kevan Reilly, Citigate Dewe Rogerson
brandon.stockwell@citigatedr.co.uk / kevan.reilly@citigatedr.co.uk
0207 638 9571

About Virgin Money

Virgin Money is Virgin's financial services arm and was established in 1995.

Virgin Money has over two million customers and offers a wide range of financial products across lending (e.g. credit cards), savings (e.g. deposits, investments and pensions) and protection (e.g. household and car insurance) to the UK market.

For more information, please visit Virgin Money

About the Virgin London Marathon

Virgin has signed a five-year deal to be the official sponsor of the London Marathon, the biggest annual fundraising event in the world. The inaugural Virgin London Marathon is on the 25 April 2010. Virgin Money, the financial services division of the Virgin Group is leading the London Marathon sponsorship with the ambition to help runners raise £¼ billion over 5 years and will use its infrastructure, online capability and financial expertise to deliver that through Virgin Money Giving.

For more information, please visit Virgin London Marathon

Virgin Money Giving Limited, Company No. 0273 3492