IDC 2022

International charity day: Q&A with Give A Little

The mission of Caution Your Blast Ltd (CYB) has always been to use digital as a force for good, which is why back in 2019 we founded Give A Little, a digital fundraising platform that helps charities collect cashless donations.

International charity day: Q&A with Give A Little

The mission of Caution Your Blast Ltd (CYB) has always been to use digital as a force for good, which is why back in 2019 we founded Give A Little, a digital fundraising platform that helps charities collect cashless donations. 

In celebration of International Charity Day, we took the time to chat to Vicky Hewlett, Give A Little's senior marketing communications manager. Vicky tells us all about how the platform is helping the charity sector, reaching the milestone of £10 million in donations and what the future holds for Give A Little. 

What is Give A Little? 

The Give A Little platform provides the point-of-donation experience for donors and campaign management for charities to set up their fundraising. The service launched in 2019 and supports charities of all sizes, including Cancer Research UK, London Zoo, and the Church of England. 

It has been a huge success - Give A Little recently celebrated reaching £10 million in donation revenues. This is a significant milestone that reflects over 4,000 charities who have made the move to cashless fundraising with the platform, taking payment card donations via contactless, Chip+PIN and online donations (supporting wallets & QR codes). 

How did it come about and what are its ties to CYB? 

The Give A Little point of donation platform came about as a result of a project that CYB worked on with BT in 2016, which set out to develop the first contactless donation solution that incorporated a touch screen - the Digital Tin. Trials of the Digital Tin were very successful, with charities like Comic Relief, Cancer Research and UNICEF loving the solution. Through this important work, CYB realised smaller charities needed the support of a sponsor to be able to afford contactless donation solutions as the cost of entry was too high, sometimes even for bigger charities.

What makes Give A Little different to other platforms?

Give A Little aims to be the most easy-to-use, flexible and affordable way for charities of all sizes to collect donations in a cashless society. Give A Little’s core mission is to reduce the cost barrier for charities moving to cashless and to thereafter shield them from the cost of technology change, which is increasing dramatically as new payment methods proliferate. We are building a community where charities support each other. This model enables the smallest charities to access Give A Little for free, while the larger, more established charities benefit from valuable additional features by subscribing to Give A Little’s premium account. As Give A Little grows, we in turn give back by reducing our fees. The platform is also part-funded by CYB, as part of its mission to use digital as a force for good.

How do charities typically use Give A Little?

Because Give A Little is such a flexible platform, there are many different ways that charities are using it to collect cashless donations. Charities who have buildings such as churches (or other religious denominations), stately homes, theatres, museums or hospitals, tend to use Give A Little in tandem with one of its device partners. Charities with buildings tend to choose to have a fixed donation kiosk where donors can make a donation at their leisure and often enable Gift-Aid to ensure they benefit from the valuable 25% uplift in donation revenues. For example, London Zoo has a number of devices which are installed with Give A Little software - they like the ability to “A/B test donation asks and to quickly switch between campaigns.” They also like the Give A Little online dashboard, “as you can easily see how your different campaigns have performed over time.”

Many of these charities are also creating web campaigns on Give A Little and sharing them via QR codes to give donors another way of donating. QR codes can be printed onto fundraising materials such as posters or affixed to the ends of pews in churches.

Other charities like Cancer Research UK are using Give A Little for face-to-face fundraising and with corporate partners for employee fundraising. They like the fact that they can create campaigns on Give A Little centrally and then control the devices remotely, ensuring that volunteers are using campaigns that adhere to brand guidelines. The charity can then see what each volunteer and each campaign has raised through Give A Little’s online admin dashboard.

Some charities, like Romsey Cancer Support Centre at Jane Scarth House, are making the most of Give A Little’s DIY approach where they are creating their own point-of-donation using recycled items donated to their charity shop. One of the charity’s Trustees, Sue Jones, has built both a portable point-of-donation to take to events and a donation pole for street collections. Read more here

What do you enjoy most about working at Give A Little?

Give A Little is truly a special place to work. I have worked in both the technology and charity sectors and Give A Little allows me to combine that experience. It’s also a great feeling to be helping so many charities raise funds for their important work while also helping them keep up with the fast pace of technology change.   

What are some exciting projects you are working on/have worked on?

I’ve really enjoyed meeting with a whole host of charities to hear how they are using Give A Little or to help others understand how they can get started with cashless giving. Each one has a unique set of challenges and it feels great when you can help them. Since starting at Give A Little in January 2022, I’ve delivered a number of talks and webinars about cashless technologies including at the Chartered Institute of Fundraising Convention and the Charity Finance Group technology conference, which has been a great experience. I’ve also created a number of videos for social media, which alongside written case stories, provide another way for charities to learn from each other and get tips and inspiration for their own cashless giving journeys. Check out Give A Little’s YouTube channel here.

How does it feel for Give A Little to reach £10 million in donations?

It’s been exciting watching the milestone approaching over the last few months as it shows how much help the platform is giving to charities. The feeling we get from knowing Give A Little is helping so many in the sector, as well as the people who rely on these donations, makes it all worthwhile.

What’s next?!

I am looking forward to introducing charities to some exciting new technologies, which are coming to the Give A Little platform over the next few months and which will give charities even more ways to collect cashless donations. I will also be launching a content series focused on tips and advice for charities to help them maximise their cashless donation revenues - watch this space!

Give A Little is currently looking for a talented Senior Developer to join the team. If you think you could be a good fit, you can apply here: 

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