It’s all give, give, give….

Working on Go-Givers, I’ve seen time and time again, that given the right tools, many children will give up their time or money for a good cause, – and I’m sure that my friends over in G Nation will attest to the same thing. So, I was interested to read research published by the Charities Aid Foundation (CAF) on the charitable thoughts and habits of children and young people.

This week, Charities Aid Foundation (CAF) published their research in conjunction with FIVE News- in the run up to their ‘Britain’s Kindest Kid’ competition. Some of CAF’s findings reflect the trends highlighted by the Citizenship Foundation’s Giving Nation research – Cancer Research, RSPCA and Children in Need coming out as popular benefactors in both cases, for example. More surprisingly, CAF’s research tells us that 27% of young people had given money to charity in the past 6 months, a low figure when compared with the 55% cited by G Nation’s 2007 research.

After reading the CAF figures, what struck me, is that 75% of the children surveyed would like to give more to charity. Furthermore, 85% believe that charities need to do more to get children interested in their work. So, how to bridge that gap? Well, schools taking part in the Giving Nation Challenge seem to have done a pretty good job of it – in the 08-09 academic year, groups of young people in schools across the UK worked together to raise £295,123.86 for charities of their choosing. On top of that, kids in London primary schools were busy with the Make a Difference Challenge – fundraising was a focus for some, whereas others decided that petitioning or awareness-raising were more appropriate ways to support their chosen cause.

Beyond just fundraising, kids taking part in these programmes feel a real sense of achievement. A 9 year old working on a local regeneration project recently told me “I am proud of what we are doing. I hope there will be change” adding that “Helping society is fun!”.

Views expressed on this blog are not necessarily those of the Citizenship Foundation.

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