Bath’s Liberal Democrat candidate Wera Hobhouse gets involved in #GivingTuesday

This #GivingTuesday Bath Liberal Democrat candidate Wera Hobhouse undertook to change her monthly charitable donation from Direct Debit to Payroll Giving. She’s calling on other UK tax-payers to consider how they give on #GivingTuesday and to make the most of Payroll Giving if it’s offered by their employers.

Peter O’Hara, CEO of Geared for Giving and ex-board member Louise McCabe from Flourish CSR met Wera to discuss how employers can help their staff give to charity more effectively.

Geared for Giving is a social enterprise and fundraising campaign calling for every employer in the UK with over 250 staff to offer Payroll Giving.

Wera Hobhouse said: ‘I was very interested to hear about Payroll Giving because we are fortunate to have many excellent charities in Bath, and it’s often difficult to choose who to support. For example, you could choose a charity like Bath City Farm, that offers training, education and therapeutic activities to disadvantaged communities in the local area; you could choose Julian House who work with the homeless; Or maybe donate to the Bath Women’s Fund that supports women, girls and families in need. It’s such a personal choice. Sometimes we would like to do more, but our working and family lives can take up all our time, so Payroll Giving seems like an excellent way to support the charities we appreciate. I would encourage all businesses in Bath to consider offering Payroll Giving to their employees.’

Peter O’Hara for Geared for Giving said: ‘There are many ways you can donate to charity, but a simple, effective and regular way to donate is through your pay. For the price of a couple of coffees a month, you can make a significant difference to charities. Not only do they receive more, because donations are tax free, but the reliable and regular income allows them to plan ahead, creating a vital pipeline of funds which allows charities to plan future projects and respond to emergencies. People work hard for their pay so if you’re making a charitable donation, you want to know that you are making the most of your money.

Louise McCabe from Flourish CSR said: ‘Lots of companies are looking for a way to boost their CSR programmes and an easy way to make a difference in the community is to offer a Payroll Giving scheme to employees. Employees appreciate the flexibility and the chance to make a difference at work. Research shows that companies which offer Payroll Giving believe it improves their company image, enhances community involvement programmes, and supports employee volunteering.’

The constituency of Bath has a great uptake of Payroll Giving amongst it’s larger employers, with 34% offering Payroll Giving, compared to the national 24%. Local business and Associate Founding Partner of Geared for Giving, CFH Docmail Ltd have really benefited from having the scheme in their workplace.

Adam Harwood, Managing Director said: ‘We were delighted to win a National Payroll Giving Excellence Award for our scheme in 2018 and have continued to build on our success and to support even more of our employees give to the charities of their choice direct from their pay (over 30 charities now benefit). It’s easy to set up, tax effecient and the local and wider community benefit from a pipeline of income on which they can depend. We’d encourage every employer in the area to do the same.’

We hope this #GivingTuesday we can encourage businesses throughout the UK to consider signing up the Payroll Giving. You can find out more here.