Philanthropists urged to ‘Do Something New’ to support the charity sector through the COVID-19 crisis 

The Beacon Collaborative is inspiring others to take a new look at how they decide to give launching the “Do Something New” guide to giving. As the next phase of COVID-19 recovery starts, philanthropists can help charities to thrive. 

The Beacon Collaborative is a charity which aims to double the amount of philanthropic giving in the UK – from £2bn to £4bn a year. It hopes to encourage giving as part of the ongoing COVID-19 effort from both experienced philanthropists and those who have not given in the past. This would help charities to not just survive the immediate crisis, but to become more resilient in the future. 

In the wake of the COVID-19 crisis, research shows that more than half of charities fear for their one-year survival without significant help. Yet more than 30% have seen a spike in demand for services. 

The “Do Something New” guide helps donors to structure their giving in response to the crisis by analysing the changing risks and much-needed impact. The questions included in the guide help donors consider how to support charities to survive, adapt and thrive beyond the crisis. 

Matthew Bowcock, Chair and co-founder of the Beacon Collaborative said: 

“Philanthropy is an important complement to private and public funds for the charity sector. This crisis has shown us that there is an unprecedented willingness to give, but donors need to know that their funds will do the most good for the most people. Now is the time to take calculated risk, as we support these most vital institutions through the next phase. 

To help new and experienced donors to arrive at these crucial decisions, we have created a detailed guide that reflects the questions they should ask both themselves and the charities that they are looking to support.” 

Cath Dovey, co-founder of the Beacon Collaborative said: 

We already know that society will change radically as a result of the impact of COVID-19. The pandemic is having an impact socially, economically, and politically that is unlikely to be reversed. This is happening locally, nationally, and internationally. Just as other sectors of the economy are being re-shaped, the charity sector will also emerge from the crisis differently.

This means we have the opportunity, right now, to re-define how the charity sector works to make sure it is more effective, adaptive, resilient and can tackle injustice and inequality better than in the past. 

Organisations need funding to do this, but they also need partners who can encourage them to think about their future role the landscape, what they will do differently, and how they can best re-frame their activities – alone or with others – to ensure they meet their goals and contribute to a more positive future.