Trust in charities, and why it matters

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Trust in charities, and why it matters

 ACEVO and nfpSynergy are partnering to provide ACEVO members and nfpSynergy clients with a comprehensive understanding of trust, and how it relates to charities. With this series of reports we hope to give you are a more nuanced understanding of what trust is and why it is important for your charity. In this first report, we will look at how trust in the charity sector has performed over recent years, how the public disclosure of bad practice has affected it (which demographics in particular have seen the biggest falls) and which charities are more likely to be trusted. Finally, we explore how trust will change in the modern era. 

Five key takeaways from this report:

  • Trust in charities is volatile and highly susceptible to disruption by negative media coverage. This is especially true for older age groups whose trust is most fragile.
  • When asked about charities in general, people express lower levels of trust than when asked about individual charities one-by-one.
  • Trust in charities appears to be mainly driven by whether people believe that charities are ethical and honest, and whether they believe that charities are well-run.
  • Increasingly, there are signs that institutions are no longer the main manufacturers of trust, and the decline of trust in charities should be viewed in this context.
  • The most trusted charities are the ones which provide clear, tangible services, while the least trusted are those which challenge the status quo.

Download the free report using the form below. If you have any comments or queries, you can contact us on, or 020 7426 8888.

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