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(66 Posts)
Annika Wed 21-Sep-11 18:20:32

I see there is to be a clamp down on charity chuggers,, we have all come across them, they stand in the local high street stopping shoppers in an effort to subscribe to the charity they happen to work for. I know they are only trying to do a job but I have been stopped so many times by them that avoiding them has become an art for me. I give to my "favourite " charity via direct debit and pop money into collection tins at the supermarket and I buy more than my fair share of draw tickets at Christmas.
Should we be glad to see the end of these so called "chuggers "

greenmossgiel Thu 22-Sep-11 20:40:35

It is, you're right, Baggy. Also, probably because she has given to this charity and hasn't been able to be strong with them when they asked for more, it seems to have opened the floodgates for other charities to pester her. We have explained to her that no-one will take any notice of the fact that she says she cannot afford to give any more. We've encouraged her to either throw away any more 'pleadings' for money, or put all of their paperwork into the return envelope and post it without a stamp. (Bless her, the first time she did that, she felt guilty and had it weighed at the Post Office and paid all the postage).

harrigran Thu 22-Sep-11 22:30:16

Some charities send out books of raffle tickets to sell, one charity sent out one book and I didn't mind buying the £12 worth of tickets. Three months later they sent two books of tickets, I thought about it and,like you do, it is a good cause so I sent the money. Three months later four books of tickets arrived, enough, they were taking me for an easy touch. They seem as if they have to push for that extra which makes people reluctant to donate. When I give to charity I put a cheque in an envelope with no covering letter or anything that gives my address. The charity gets the important donation and I don't get pestered.

Oldgreymare Thu 22-Sep-11 23:12:32

Unsolicited books of raffle tickets, gift tags, notecards, address labels and, worst of all, Christmas cards painted by foot or mouth, think of the cost to the charity involved! What a waste!
I used to surrender to the emotional blackmail, I now return these items with the instruction 'please recycle' And I use the pre-paid envelope to do this..... I'm turning into a curmudgeon!

grannyactivist Fri 23-Sep-11 00:45:12

green That is outrageous. I have copied your quote and emailed it to Cancer Research UK and asked if they would like to make a response to the 7000+ Gransnetters who read these comments.

I'm particularly angry because I well remember the distress this same sort of thing caused to my husband's grandmother before she died; like your SIL she was already giving as much as she could afford to a few well chosen charities and became deeply upset by the harassment she experienced. angryangry

greenmossgiel Fri 23-Sep-11 11:09:17

Thank you grannyactivist. I've helped her to write letters and put them into reply paid envelopes, but to no avail. Regarding the unsolicited books of raffle tickets - imagine how this sort of thing could be abused? Anyone receiving these through the post can sell them round the neighbourhood to unsuspecting, well-meaning people, keeping any money that is paid out for them. angry

whatamess Fri 23-Sep-11 16:47:55

I urge posters not to feel guilty about not responding to unsolicited postings, calls etc. Charities do this in an extremely competitive market and as long as people feel guilty and respond so that they make more money from it they will continue.

I'm not opposed to charity. Far from it. I subscribe by direct debit to 6 charities, willingly support bucket collectors who don't hassle and give many hours to the one charity I have chosen to be a volunteer for since I retired. But I come from a communications background which included working for one of the country's largest charities, who started this telephone pestering in the 1990s despite my department's warnings that it a) played on people's guilt and exploited vulnerability b) was borderline unethical and c) was potentially damaging to their reputation. It was one of the reasons I chose to leave. They argued that it was worth it because it brought in extra funds. So there you have it. Stop giving into emotional blackmail and they will stop doing it if they cease making money from it.

Maniac Tue 27-Sep-11 17:28:40

I've learnt a new word today-chuggers.yes I have had doorsteppers trying to persuade me to sign up for a direct debit -even though I have a a sticker from'Scamwise' saying 'No doorstep traders'
Usually they are fresh-faced earnest students with a very plausible story.I imagine they in turn have been persuaded that a) they are helping a good cause and b) they will earn some money.
I also follow the suggestion of stuffing unsolicited mail in the envelopprovided and posting without stamp.
Another tip passed on to me -In response to requests to take part in a survey say 'yes but I charge £30 an hour'
What a grumpy old woman I am.!!

kittylester Tue 27-Sep-11 17:40:37

By the time I realised that my Mum wasn't coping too well she had direct debits to 12 charities. I can only assume that she had been stopped in town and just signed up! The funny thing is that 2 were to Help The Aged!!

numberplease Wed 19-Oct-11 22:13:49

I had a doorstep visit this afternoon from 2 very intimidating looking men in suits and dark overcoats, thought they were Mormons at first, but no, they wanted me to sign up to donate to a childrens charity, to the amount of 36p a day. They weren`t impressed when I refused. I told them that I do support certain charities, and that I always put into collecting boxes in town. One of them said that he was sorry I felt that way, and that collecting boxes in town were dying out these days, not in our town they`re not!

harrigran Thu 20-Oct-11 11:59:00

I am always wary of people turning up on the doorstep, usually at dusk, asking to give details for regular contributions. One woman flashed a card at me supposedly her ID, it was actually a card belonging to someone I know who had nothing to do with the charity.
While I have had burly builders here I have not been bothered by doorsteppers smile

nannysgetpaid Thu 20-Oct-11 12:50:00

I had a visit from someone with a RSPCA yellow vest on last night wanting me to sign up for a monthly contribution .She made a fuss of our dog and said she could see that I was an animal lover. When I told her that I did not sign up to anything on the doorstep she stopped stroking the dog and walked off.

gracesmum Thu 20-Oct-11 17:44:39

I hate chuggers and have been driven to have a go back at them challenging them to tell me what they personally know about child poverty/abuse/deprivation to the embarrassment of the people with me. I have also "people watched" on Haverstock Hill in London and seen how the young men go for the girls/women and the girls go for the men. All very sweet and earnest but WHAT DO THEY KNOW and how dare they even try to make the rest of us feel guilty. As an older woman out on her own I could feel quite threatened and intimidated (if I wasn't so anfry) The telephone chuggers are usually politer but I just say that I give what I can give to the charities of my choice and hang up.

Annobel Wed 25-Apr-12 21:06:29

Jumping back into the subject of 'chugging': this week in Paris we were well and truly 'chugged'! In front of Notre Dame, a group of young deaf people with clipboards surrounded us and we just thought we were being asked to sign a petition. However, we then discovered that we were expected to make a donation. I was taking 5 Euros out of my purse when one of them tried to take a ten out instead, telling us that a minimum of 10 was expected! We very firmly said 'Non' and turned away leaving them to approach other hapless passers by. There did seem to be a deliberate targeting of foreigners!

Granb Thu 26-Apr-12 09:42:02

A very nice couple called at the house saying they were with the NDCS and asked if we wanted to contribute. OH and I already contribute to this as our youngest DS is hearing impaired. We also used to belong to the local group and were once on the committee. The fact we were already donators did not register and in the end I was incredibly rude and just started rabbiting on about people we used to know in the group, the wonderful work that is done and did they know this and were they aware of that - mad woman at door just scared her away in the end smile

nanachrissy Thu 26-Apr-12 09:52:19

Anno that same thing happened to me in Rome. Told them no, in no uncertain terms!

Also,where I shop is a narrowish pedestrianised street, and yesterday three young people were pouncing on shoppers so there was no escape!

I'm afraid no I'm not I was quite rude. grin

Barrow Thu 26-Apr-12 10:00:28

A few years ago I used to volunteer for a national Breast Cancer charity. I put in a lot of hard work raising thousands of pounds in donations. Then one year I decided to do a bit more investigating of the charity and found the executives were all on very high salaries, head office staff received interest free mortgages and those who came to visit the regions stayed in very good quality hotels with generous expense accounts. The final straw was when I had a visit from someone from head office, the meeting lasted around 2 hours and she then said she was off to do some retail therapy, so she had a very pleasant weekend away, paid for by the charity, all for a 2 hour meeting which was unnecessary in the first place. I resigned from the charity and now only give to local charities where I know where the money goes.

scrabble Thu 26-Apr-12 15:54:34

We have those calls from Cancer Research and my husband says to them if they ring again he will stop the donation.

Nanban Thu 26-Apr-12 18:55:30

One and All contribute to the Sally Army - they do a wonderful job, have no staff jollies, no company cars bought on our money, and help where no-one else will.

jeni Thu 26-Apr-12 19:41:52

I contribute to SA, the RNLI, WINGS, and the Earl Haig fund.
I also give to our local church and Christian aid! No other!
I am fed up. Of the junk mail I get from charities!

POGS Sun 29-Apr-12 15:34:47

I cannot beleive how naive people are when it comes to charities. Chuggers are not your usual charity collectors. There is a ruthlessness about them and I beleive a lot of fraud is involved with this type of collecting. It is a massive problem, worldwide, concerning charity giving. Even the Big Issue sellers have been highlighted recently as Eastern Europeans who obtain a national insurance number to claim bebefits. This has been clarified by the founder himself if I am not mistaken. I have no problem with Big Issue sellers but when reports are made that abuses are taking place then one has to be careful. Don't take my word for it enough has been written on this issue.

It is not only chuggers that are causing problems. There are many instances of begging and distraction thefts taking place all over the country. I am not being miserable, I do give to charities but I am very selective. I like the Donkey Sanctuary in Devon, Lifeboats and Air Ambulance for example. I was also very shocked when the Icelandic Banks went under. The collosal amounts of money, in the millions, that were being held by even some very well known charities astonished me. I appreciate you have to pay the bills and charities are a business but hell what good was all that money doing sitting in bank accounts.

dahlia Sun 06-May-12 20:15:31

What always annoys me is that, when I respond to an emergency appeal e.g. for UNICEF in Africa, with a one-off donation, it seems to be a signal to one and all that I am a soft touch. And the regular direct debit (to Water Aid) still led to telephone requests for an increase in the monthly amount. The callers are all very pleasant and appreciative, but I don't like the way they make feel so mean that I genuinely can't afford to pay more. I can well understand how someone stressed or confused would say "Yes" to a request just to get the call ended.

Anagram Sun 06-May-12 20:19:01

I agree, dahlia. OH contributes to many charities (on behalf of us both) and I've lost count of the number of phone calls he receives from them, always asking him to up his commitment. It's emotional blackmail in my opinion, and almost amounts to harassment!

harrigran Sun 06-May-12 23:09:04

It is very annoying to have people phoning asking to increase donations. I do not donate by direct debit, I put a cheque in an envelope with no covering letter and certainly no address and phone number. The charity gets the donation but can't badger me for an increase.

Hunt Sun 06-May-12 23:33:51

I also contribute to the charities of my choice by direct debit. I did this initially because I fondly hoped that contributing in this way would stop the postal requests at least from these charities. When the postal requests kept on coming I rang one of the charities to ask why this was so and was told ''we get more from the people who already give than from those who don't''

Annobel Sun 06-May-12 23:53:07

One evening there was a hearing impaired young man at the door; the next it was a couple of unbearably chirpy girls with a clipboard, seeking a commitment to donations to a heart charity. I wish everyone would give the same response as I do and then they might take the hint and withdraw their collectors. My advice is to keep the chain on, say 'no thank you', politely but firmly and close the door immediately. Don't engage in conversation!