How often do you carry cash? Sometimes I go reaching in my pocket to give a tip, pay for playgroup or put some money in the collection at church on a Sunday and I can safely say that 90% of the time there are no notes or coins in my purse.
Walking down the street and there are often quite a few people that I would consider giving money to – market traders, someone selling the Big Issue, or a homeless person asking for loose change. But again, I very rarely have any coins to give.
Today we very much tend to be a cashless society; almost everything can be paid for by card, even market stall traders and other street sellers have the scope to take chip and pin payments and make contactless transactions. Super convenient for us, but less helpful to those that rely on cash donations.
This is where contactless donation points could come in very handy, potentially revolutionising the way we donate money.
A pilot scheme is currently being carried out in London launched by the Mayor Sadiq Khan to try and help charities combatting homelessness.
The technology consists of 35 terminals which take card donations of £3, located around the city at places such as a West End theatre, Mayfair based cinema, bars in Waterloo and a coffee kiosk in Canary Wharf.
The number of terminals will increase to 90 which will then share the money raised between 22 charities based in London.
The rates of rough sleeping is something councils all over the country have committed to improving, with the government giving London alone £11 million to try and tackle this issue last year and moving into the present.
These payment points are a direct response to the fact that many people just don’t cash anymore, let alone loose change.
Last year the highest recorded figure of rough sleepers since records began was found between July and September in London – A total of 3,103.
Londoners may well want to do their bit and help those less fortunate than themselves, but lack the loose change that donations so heavily rely on. These new contactless donation points could be just the answer.
Unfortunately, cuts to welfare support and services have seen more and more people forced onto the street so the outreach teams and activities need to increase. These donation points are one way to help encourage people to give money to charities who are committed to help these people.
Huge efforts and large amounts of money are going towards rough sleeping initiatives to halve rough sleeping within 3 years and end it completely by 2027.
Of course, there is government funding going towards this but charities also work tirelessly to fundraise and raise money to do their own work towards these intiatives and help get people off the street.
These contactless donation points could revolutionise the way charities raise money for the homeless around cities all over the UK.
But they could also help a whole array of organisations with their fundraising and donations. Restaurants, hairsalons, etc could have them to generate tips for their employees. Churches could install them so people could give as much as they want for the Sunday collection. Schools could have them in their reception area to raise money for their PTA.
The scope for fundraising is huge and these contactless donation points could be a wonderful way of increasing the money raised for so many worthy causes.