Trust in charities falls again - Interactive Chart

Graph showing trust in charities over time

Trust in charities falls again - Interactive Chart

  • Trust in charities falls from 53% in Spring 15 to 48% in Autumn 2015
  • Charities have fallen from 8th place to 12th place in just 6 months in the list of trusted public institutions
  • Now behind supermarkets and TV & Radio stations in levels of trust
  • Charities are most trusted by the under 24s and least trusted by the over 55s

The latest wave of nfpSynergy research in trust in charities and other public institutions shows that the summer of media coverage and newspaper revelations have taken their toll.

The number of people from a nationally representative sample of the UK public of 1000 who said they trusted charities ‘a great deal’ or ‘quite a lot’ has fallen from the spring of this year, when it was from 53% to 48%. This decrease means that charities are now less trusted than supermarkets, TV & radio stations and the Royal Family and number 12 on the list.

This decrease to 48% means that the sector is now at a nine year low in trust (see chart above), with the only point in our tracking research where trust for charities was lower being in July 2007 (at 42%). The decline in trust for charities is not part of a wider trend with, for example, trust in the police, schools and the royal family all showing either increases or stabity over the same period .

In terms of age, trust in charities has broadly risen and fallen among all the age groups at the same time. Nonetheless younger people tend to trust charities the most with 61% of 16-24 year olds trusting charities a great deal or quite a lot, compared to the over 55s which has trust of around 42%. In other words the group who trust charities the most are the least important in terms of donations, and the one who trust the least are the core group for charity income.

Our interactive chart below allows you to explore how trust varies by age, gender and social grade for all of the institutions we track in our research.

Joe Saxton said:

‘These are sad results if not surprising given the recent coverage of charities. The image of charities and their activities have had 6 months of un-precedented negative coverage in a number of areas.  We can only hope that the work on the new fundraising self-regulation regime and the NCVO-ACEVO partnership to promote ‘brand charity’ are able to get going as quickly as possible. 

Interactive Chart



Submitted by Peter Maple (not verified) on 7 Nov 2015


The graph does seem to indicate that public trust is a very moveable criteria. As low as 42% in 2007 and at 66% as recently as 2013. Apparently media coverage does have a direct correlation. So where are the good news stories that, way ahead of the FPS and new regulator your favourite causes really are listening and taking notice?

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