2,000 Anglicans were surveyed between July-September 2020 on giving perceptions and practice. Anglicans were defined as those who consider themselves as active supporters of the Church of England and attend church at least once a month.
The survey shows that simple things can be done quickly and easily to encourage giving, and so grow the ministry and mission of the church. The survey will be repeated every two years to track the impact of the National Giving Strategy on giving within the Church of England.
Whilst some of the results from the survey were predictable, we were surprised to discover that there was little statistical variation by church geography, tradition or setting. Therefore, whilst the results are not representative of all parishes, they are on average true. Generosity is complex, these findings must be delivered with love and care
Top 10 Findings
- A third of Anglicans do not give to their Church
- 40% of Anglicans have never been asked to give regularly
- Nearly half of Anglicans have never been asked to review their giving
- Only half of Anglicans have heard a sermon on giving in the past 12 months & 60% said it didn’t change their thinking on giving if they had
- The most popular reason to give to their Church was to help keep the building maintained.
- Twice as many Anglicans have been asked to give by collection envelope (60%) compared to direct debit (31%)
- Anglicans are three times as likely to leave a legacy to charity than they are to church
- Only 27% of Anglicans view their church’s need as ‘very important’
- 49% feel they would be motivated to give more if they understood the impact of their giving
- Less than a third of Anglicans say they are regularly thanked for their giving
Top 10 Recommendations
- Encourage giving in a variety of different ways and using different methods
- Promote and encourage regular giving by Direct Debit / Standing Order such as the Parish Giving Scheme, and explain why it is important
- Ask all members to review their giving as part of an annual giving campaign
- Enable people to learn about living a generous life as part of their discipleship
- Encourage giving to the church as a way of maintaining the church building for current and future generations.
- Ensure your church has the means for people to give digitally eg online, contactless and direct debit and promote them
- Provide information about why legacies are needed and encourage members to consider this form of giving
- Regularly communicate the church’s need for local generosity to fund its local ministry and mission
- Explain the impact the church makes in the local community as a result of people’s giving. Illustrate this by showing what giving enables at different amounts, a bit like a shopping list e.g. £5 a week pays for all the resources we provide for a child at our Messy Church service, £15 a week funds the cost of running a discipleship session for people to grow in their faith, £25 a week pays the costs of a monthly youth work session.
- Ensure givers are formally thanked at least once a year for their giving
To help better understand the different giving motivations and habits, we’ve created five Giving Personas. These personas show the different types of giver within a typical church, and your church can use these personal profiles to better understand the range of attitudes and behaviours around giving, and tailor giving communications to different Anglican audiences. Download the profiles.