How to Avoid The Chuggers (Charity Muggers)

Take a walk down pretty much any high street these days, and often just a regular street, and chances are you’ll get accosted by a ‘chugger’. No I’m not talking about someone overly downing a massive amount of beer, though they may go and do that later on. I’m talking about very cheerily aggressive people stopping you and telling you all about the wonders of a charity that they’re supposedly trying to help.

Chugger (noun): Charity + Mugger
Paid “charity” street worker (read: student) who has been trained to believe that they are carrying out a worthy task, improving peoples’ lives by conning Joe Public out of their money for this week’s Good Cause. Usually an agency worker where the agency takes a hefty cut of the hourly rate that the charity in question has paid for, whilst at the same time increasing profits by selling on details of those foolish enough to actually stop and sign up to said Good Cause. (Urban Dictionary)

So while your walking down town and trying to mind your own business and keep your money safe, what methods do you use to try and steer clear of these young ambitious (and seemingly well paid) chuggers? A couple of friends and I have assembled a top 10 list of our favourite tried and tested methods that have got us out of awkward conversations and helped a real charity-case; ourselves. I do want to point out that I’m not against charities and do give what I can when I can (which I’ll admit isn’t very often), but I’m not a fan of “all these people are suffering and only you can help them” type sales pitches. I don’t want that kind of responsibility, I’m not frickin’ Batman.

Honourable Mention: Rugby – When eye contact is made, picture yourself on a rugby pitch with the tri line just behind them. Run, dodge and weave your way right past them, not stopping until you’ve planted your non-existent ball (usually your shopping) in the scoring zone (usually the lap of an elderly man sitting on a bench).

Chuggers may use subtle psychology to try and part you from your money.
10. Photography – Interestingly how I got the pictures for this blog. When you’re walking down the road and spot the Chugger Patrol, get your camera out and look up and the tops of the buildings. Take a few pictures (fake it if you want), then fiddle with some settings. Say things to yourself like “ooh, the lighting isn’t quite right” and “I’ll just adjust the exposure a tad” then take a couple more. By which time the chuggers will have seen you ‘working’ and won’t be arsed to talk to you as you walk past them. The main downside to this is that it can take a little time, so not ideal if you’re in a hurry.

9. Be Literate – As well as killing time on a long commute, having a book, newspaper, or magazine to hand can help bypass a chugger or two. Open a page and put your nose right in to give you an excuse not to notice the massive smiley person after your money. However, try to keep an eye on where you’re going, particularly if you’re heading towards a main road, otherwise a chugger will be the last of your worries.

8. The Direct Approach – Chuggers are trained to be very friendly and positive in their approach, so this is a regular fire versus fire technique. Instead of allowing a chugger to spot and approach you, you head in their direction with the biggest creepy grin your can concoct. You can make this more effective by turning your head slightly sidewise but maintaining eye contact. The goal is to get nearer to the chugger so they get creeped out and move to someone behind you. However, cock-this up and you’ve virtually given your bank details right to them.

7. The Very Direct Approach – The English language has been blessed with a rich lexicon, as such there are plenty of words that you wouldn’t want your 8 year old to shout in front of a church of elderly people. This technique is commonly used by anyone who has had a bad day, normally work-related, but isn’t recommended for people with small children (protect their little sodding ears and all that). It works simply as this, when approached by a chugger, trying to capture your attention by talking about how great things are, you simple keep on walking but give them two “words of encouragement” that rhyme with Cook Off.

6. Be Embarrassing – Most effective when you’re visiting somewhere that people are unlikely to see you again, so not one for your home towns. Once eye contact with a chugger is made you have but a few seconds to try and make yourself as unappealing as possible and make the chugger go straight for the unfortunate person behind you. Some suggestions are faking tourettes, rip off your t-shirt and shove it down your bottoms, or get into dance mode and try to moonwalk past the chugger.

5. The Floor – I’ll tell you what, I never noticed how fascinate the floor is. Go ahead, have a look. If you think it’s pretty good now, it’s really thrilling when you’re out there on Chugger Street. Pulling off the ‘Stare At The Floor’ does require a bit of a steely determination, and a dynamite concentration. Try focussing on the feet of the person in front of you, unless of course it’s a chugger. Like the reading a book tip, watch where you’re heading.

To be fair, this Chugger started his spiel with "I'm not after your money today".
4. I’m Late! – One of the easiest evasion methods on here. When approached by a chugger simply speed up your walk, point down to your wrist, and announce that “you’re late for work, sorry”. This can have comical effects when you’re wearing a t-shirt and clearly have no watch on. Be warned though, a determined chugger will offer to walk with you in which case you’d better think of somewhere you can get to and claim it to be your place of work (if you’re brave, properly equipped, and love a bit of irony, you could always be on your way to work as a chugger yourself).

3. Eigo ga dekinai (I don’t speak English) – A treat for anyone who has an interest in the world. For this one to work you have to be able to mutter a line or two in a foreign language, something most of us can do thanks to learning it at school (if we can remember that far back) or European holidays. Beware that most chuggers are or have been University students, and it’s very possible that they studied that language that you are about to try and blag your fluency in. This is more likely to be the case with European languages. Thankfully I have yet to meet a chugger who can speak Japanese.

2. iGnore – The beauty of the portable music player has meant that you have a visible reason for blatantly ignoring people. Spot a chugger down the street and whack your headphones in. You don’t even need to be listening to anything, as long as your headphones are visible you can just breeze past them. You can make this more effective by singing along (quietly) to what you’re listening to (or pretending to listen to). Of course listening to loud music means you’re (supposedly) more likely to get robbed, so still keep your wits about you.

Smart move my friend, keep your hands on your money ... literally.

1. The Phone – The easiest way to avoid chuggination in this day and age is down to the fact that there are over 70 million mobile phones connected in the UK (which is actually quite funny if you know what the UK population size is). The technique is to simply whack your phone to your ear and pretend to talk to someone. Use a few “hmm, yeah …” and “so did it work?” type sentences, try to imagine a conversation you might have with someone. Or if your imagination’s not up to the task, you could actually ring someone and have a brief chat. This way if you’re approached by a chugger you just need to gesture to your phone and they’ll get the hint (unless they’re sodding rude). Please remember to put your phone on silent, otherwise you risk not only deafening yourself but also looking like a complete berk.

So there we have it, our top ten tips on how to avoid getting chugged. Unfortunately if the dialogue begins you’re on your own there, but here are three quick methods of trying to break it. First of all, if they ask you any ‘Qualifier Question’ (ie are you in a specific age group) just say “No”. If it’s followed up with other questions just repeat No until they get bored of you. If they have a memorised script then let them say the entire thing, then just stand there for a moment, make a few “thinking noises” then casually walk off. If all else fails, start crying. You can almost guarantee they’ll let you go.

And just because a friend of mine asked me how the Japanese ignore people, here’s a rather stereotypical scenario (set to start at 5:33).

27 thoughts on “How to Avoid The Chuggers (Charity Muggers)”

  1. Thanks sooooo much for this. I get targeted by these people like crazy — I can’t understand WHY. I’ve gone out with the flu to buy medicine, coughing until my eyes water (and this was during the swine flu!) and still been approached by them, even while I was coughing so much I couldn’t talk.

    Other times, I’ve gone out practically wearing rags (my only jacket has a hole in it) and I still couldn’t get these people to leave me alone. I have to RUN from some of them.

    For a while I went out with kanji study cards (the kind they sell at muji… you know, blank cards on a ring) which worked well for a while. I even had Chinese people following me, asking me if I was learning Chinese. *chuckles*

    1. @Maneki Neko
      Often they have a profile of a person that they have to approach (ie someone who looks like a student, someone who looks employed, someone with a working pair of legs), but at other times it seems like they’ll grab anyone (and I did once see actual grabbing, that was followed by punching and ducking). Since I wrote this entry, I’ve tried to use new techniques of avoidance which have given mixed results. The kanji flash card technique can be good as they’ll see the card and think you don’t speak English (and the addition to people asking if you speak another language can also be kinda humerous).

  2. I always feel like I’m being targeted by the chuggers and I’ve definitely used some of these tactics, My favorite that I haven’t tried was the big smile, a nice but creepy way to get them to leave you alone.

    I’ve actually been trying to figure out why charities think chuggers are a good fundraising idea since it seems most people don’t like them. Check out my survey and give some feedback.

    http://thomaslin.journalism.cuny.edu/2010/09/13/chuggers-helping-the-cause-or-stealing-your-money/

  3. I actually am a chugger and do my best to be polite and nice to people, as I’m pretty aware we’re somewhere similar to pigeons on the social ladder…Mostly as there’s always that guy in your team who won’t take no for an answer which makes us all look bad.

    Do us all a favour, if a chugger doesn’t take no for an answer, *report them*. The only way to solve the problem is by forcing agencies to accept that they need to get people in who aren’t going to bully people into signing up….

    That said, please stop abusing us. I’m only trying to pay my rent and bills.

    (Btw, if it’s the people with PDAs they can’t sign you up without a phone number or postcode, so just say you don’t have/know it for an easy escape!)

  4. I carry a letter in my wallet that I give to chuggers that do not take no for an answer. People should try this themselves:

    Dear chugger

    If you are reading this, either you haven’t taken “NO” for an answer or I can’t be bothered to go through the same old routine of telling you why I do not give to charities in the street.

    These reasons are:

    1) I do not appreciate being interrupted: if I wish to give to a charity, I will seek them out and offer a donation on my terms.

    2) Any money received by yourselves is firstly used to generate a profit, to cover costs and and to pay your wages/commission. A charity should not be a business. You are not annoying people and taking their money voluntarily, are you?

    3) I do not appreciate the insincerity of being approached with false, scripted compliments designed to engage me in conversation, the object of which is to take my money.

    4)The less people that make donations/ give their details to people like you, the more likely the message will get across that this method of collecting for charity is insincere and annoying and should cease to exist.

    5) I’m not a charitable person.

    6) I dislike people who do not take “NO” for an answer. My doctor says I should avoid argumentative situations or I might end up in prison again for Battery / Assault.

    Thank you and have a nice day!

    The chuggers should leave you alone after reading this!

    1. Thank you for your letter Paul. I do wonder in amazement how you could put together such a letter. It must have taken you hours and hours of thought to create such a poignant letter. And to have the mindfulness to keep in your wallet for a chance meeting with a chugger, is simply genius. I do have a few questions which I have neatly put alongside the points you have laid out.

      I carry a letter in my wallet that I give to chuggers that do not take no for an answer. People should try this themselves:

      Dear chugger

      If you are reading this, either you haven’t taken “NO” for an answer or I can’t be bothered to go through the same old routine of telling you why I do not give to charities in the street.

      # Chuggers are trained the mysterious art of not listening, especially to the word “NO”. It was actually quite hard for me to write that down. Within the mysterious world of fundraising training, we take special joy in the learning the art of winding people up. And as soon as we hear that special word several times over, and can see you are quite clearly agitated, frustrated and getting angry – we just turn it up a notch, just for the personal satisfaction of seeing how far we can take it. No has no meaning in the world of chairty fundrasing. Didn’t you know that already? I’m surprised.

      These reasons are:

      1) I do not appreciate being interrupted: if I wish to give to a charity, I will seek them out and offer a donation on my terms.

      #Thank for telling me that, but we do not appreciate that you do not appreciate being interuppted. And we will continue nonetheless. Persistence is futile. I take your point that if you wish to give to charity you will seek them out and offer a donation on your own terms. Errrr, how does that work considering your Point No. 5? Just a small conflict there I feel.

      2) Any money received by yourselves is firstly used to generate a profit, to cover costs and and to pay your wages/commission. A charity should not be a business. You are not annoying people and taking their money voluntarily, are you?

      # All charities have been conning the whole world for decades about this. The charity sector has at the heart of its values, profit and meglomania. And all employees are employed with that understanding. I see people on the streets simply as pound signs. I do not care about the charity and see the job as a way to make huge amounts of money week in week out. Life in London has never been better for chuggers, living on £250 take home a week. Its really quite spectactular. The thing that really keeps me going though, is the delight in annoying as many people every single minute of my working day. Unless I have annoyed someone up to the point of say writing a letter to hand out to the likes of me about why they dislike me, I haven’t done my job and can barely sleep at night. Additionally, I absolutely go wild when I’m able to use my well developed skills of coercion, manipulation, guilt mongering and aggressive control. Especially on vulnerable people, grannies, people with learning disabilities, you name it, I’ll deal with it. I also get a special kick out of looking at the results of my activities on The Charity Commission. Set up by charities to spread even more lies. In essence though I freely admit that I am a robot to the charity sector. I have gained so many transferable skills during my time on the streets. That reminds me, I must update my CV to include all these wonderful attributes and skills.

      3) I do not appreciate the insincerity of being approached with false, scripted compliments designed to engage me in conversation, the object of which is to take my money.

      #All charity fundraisers are given ‘The Chuggers Guide to Engaging People in Conversation Handbook’ as part of their training. I really don’t know where I’d be without the knowledge contained within. Take Point No.4 “99% of the population are insincere and false. You must mirror this behaviour on the streets, as the people will see some of themselves in you and respond more positively”. Point No.189 in the handbook is also quite pertinent. “Money talks. It is essential that you always focus on the money. It’s a waste of time talking to somebody for 10 minutes about a charity that perhaps they didn’t know anything about previously, as they have memories like goldfish, and will forget everything you have said in an instant. Just simply ask for their money. And remember people – be as insincere and false as you can”.

      4)The less people that make donations/ give their details to people like you, the more likely the message will get across that this method of collecting for charity is insincere and annoying and should cease to exist.

      #It doesn’t matter. We’re moving into digital, and have teams across the nation who will hunt you down online and annoy you even more. Your personal information has never been more easily accessible as it has now, with the Internet. Thank you Tim Berners-Lee, Google, Facebook, Twitter et al.

      5) I’m not a charitable person.

      #Well, we might be robots, but we kind of figured that one out for ourselves when you continually said “NO” to us. We’ll keep on going though. We’re robots after all, and “NO” doesn’t exist in our listening.

      6) I dislike people who do not take “NO” for an answer. My doctor says I should avoid argumentative situations or I might end up in prison again for Battery / Assault.

      #We are not human. We are not even sub-human. We are robots. So your dislike for us doesn’t resonate with us one single bit. I would definitely go and see your doctor though.

      Thank you and have a nice day!

      #Thank you. And you have a nice day too! – I’m sorry, was that too insincere for you?

      The chuggers should leave you alone after reading this!

      #We will never leave you alone.

    2. Thank you for your letter Paul. I do wonder in amazement how you could put together such a letter. It must have taken you hours and hours of thought to create such a poignant letter. And to have the mindfulness to keep in your wallet for a chance meeting with a chugger, is simply genius.

      # Chuggers are trained the mysterious art of not listening, especially to the word “NO”. It was actually quite hard for me to write that down. Within the mysterious world of fundraising training, we take special joy in the learning the art of winding people up. And as soon as we hear that special word several times over, and can see you are quite clearly agitated, frustrated and getting angry – we just turn it up a notch, just for the personal satisfaction of seeing how far we can take it. No has no meaning in the world of chairty fundrasing. Didn’t you know that already? I’m surprised.

      #Thank for telling me that you don’t like being interrupted. I do not appreciate that you do not appreciate being interruppted. And we will continue nonetheless. Persistence is futile. I take your point that if you wish to give to charity you will seek them out and offer a donation on your own terms. Errrr, how does that work considering your Point No. 5? Just a small conflict there I feel. You may want to tweak that one a little bit.

      # About the money. All charities have been conning the whole world for decades about this. The charity sector has at the heart of its values, profit and meglomania. And all employees are employed with that understanding. I see people on the streets simply as pound signs. I do not care about the charity and see the job as a way to make huge amounts of money week in week out. Life in London has never been better for chuggers, living on £250 take home a week. Its really quite spectactular. The thing that really keeps me going though, is the delight in annoying as many people every single minute of my working day. Unless I have annoyed someone up to the point of say writing a letter to hand out to the likes of me about why they dislike me, I haven’t done my job and can barely sleep at night. Additionally, I absolutely go wild when I’m able to use my well developed skills of coercion, manipulation, guilt mongering and aggressive control. Especially on vulnerable people, grannies, people with learning disabilities, you name it, I’ll deal with it. I also get a special kick out of looking at the results of my activities on The Charity Commission. Set up by charities to spread even more lies. In essence though I freely admit that I am a robot to the charity sector. I have gained so many transferable skills during my time on the streets. That reminds me, I must update my CV to include all these wonderful attributes and skills.

      # Insincerity and money again. All charity fundraisers are given ‘The Chuggers Guide to Engaging People in Conversation Handbook’ as part of their training. I really don’t know where I’d be without the knowledge contained within. Take Point No.4 “99% of the population are insincere and false. You must mirror this behaviour on the streets, as the people will see some of themselves in you and respond more positively”. Point No.189 in the handbook is also quite pertinent. “Money talks. It is essential that you always focus on the money. It’s a waste of time talking to somebody for 10 minutes about a charity that perhaps they didn’t know anything about previously, as they have memories like goldfish, and will forget everything you have said in an instant. Just simply ask for their money. And remember people – be as insincere and false as you can”.

      #About this method of collecting charity being annoying and ideally ceasing to exist. It doesn’t matter. We’re moving into digital, and have teams across the nation who will hunt you down online and annoy you even more. Your personal information has never been more easily accessible as it has now, with the Internet. Thank you Tim Berners-Lee, Google, Facebook, Twitter et al.

      5) I’m not a charitable person.

      #About you not being a charitable person. Well, we might be robots, but we kind of figured that one out for ourselves when you continually said “NO” to us. We’ll keep on going though. We’re robots after all, and “NO” doesn’t exist in our listening.

      #You’re dislike of people who won’t take “NO” for an answer and the doctor. We are not human. We are not even sub-human. We are robots. So your dislike for us doesn’t resonate with us one single bit. I would definitely go and see your doctor though.

      Thank you and have a nice day!

      #Thank you. And you have a nice day too! – was that sincere enough for you?

      The chuggers should leave you alone after reading this!

      #We will never leave you alone.

  5. just given one a right good bollocking for knocking on my front door, I have a very large sign saying NO chuggers gippos drive cleaning merchants window salesman garage door suppliers or pikeys wanting to mow my grass whilst your mate robs me at the back door, so after i invited the stupid chugger to discuss his lack of basic english after i told him to f off his minder wanted to join in. ooohh what a silly mistake that was i am 18 stone and rather ugly the two little studey boys promptly emptied their bowells on my drive and burst into tears then ran off !!!!!

  6. Why not just say you don’t want to stop? I’m approached roughly once a week (because, by the way, I work for the council where I live, and it is just a fact that no one, ever, is approached every single day on one particular street. It is heavily regulated and never does any council book fundraisers more than 3 times in one week in one spot, and it is never ever the same agency fundraising the same charity in one week at the same spot) and I just say I don’t want to stop. I smile, say that, and walk on, and I’ve never gotten anything other than a “have a nice day,” or something of the like. The fact is, these agencies form contract campaigns with the charities who SEEK THEM OUT and look for the most cost effective bid. For the British Red Cross, for example, with which I am involved, they will contract an agency to raise, say, £1.5MM over 4 years, and will pay the agency about £250,000 for that. People say that charities shouldn’t do that form of fundraising, but the simple fact is, for the NSPCC, 80% of their annual revenue is from individual donors. And about 50% of that comes from the street teams that they hire. And still they don’t have enough to accomplish all of their goals. And this is in addition to the pamphlet distribution and events that they do. People are wholly entitled to say no, but what they can’t do is try to prove a point by saying they’ll give on their own time, if they never do. It’s because a severe majority of citizens say that, and then never give, that charities utilise street fundraisers. Yes, they can be annoying, and no, I don’t want to be interrupted all the time, but it takes me no time to say I don’t want to stop as I’m walking towards where I’m already going. Yes, they get paid. So do nurses and so do the social workers helping kids in our communities. And so does every single person on staff at any charity. NSPCC has over 2000 staff that get paid. The BRC has thousands as well. For many fundraisers, it is their job. A job that charities thank them for. I’ve seen it happen where BRC staffers not only tell me how important they are, but shake hands, ask questions, give advice, and thank fundraisers profusely. It is a difficult job, and in the end, if the donors who they sign up remain donors for an extended period (which is what the charities want/need), it does a great deal to help charities continue to forecast and budget and expand programs to accomplish their goals. Fine, they’re annoying. But, people getting so amused from hurling insults, lying to fundraisers, and actually campaigning against the overall goals of the fundraising/marketing departments of the charities who hire them, is a symptom of a much bigger problem than the ones caused by people (and admittedly there are some obnoxious seeds, but they’re not all 20 year olds with no purpose) who are doing more for charities in the end than virtually anyone you see if you walk out on to the high street at lunch time and take a scan. If you hate fundraisers so much, talk to the local council. They are the ones who authorise the fundraising on the street. Or, talk to the charity, find out how you can get involved without giving. I guarantee you, if you tell a fundraiser that you volunteer for the charity already, they will say that’s excellent, and maybe even thank you. Or, if you hate them so much and hate that they get paid, I suggest going out and fundraising full-time voluntarily, see how well you do, and how long you last without an income (not everyone can live that way). Or, more appropriately, if you think that you are so much more civilised than they, just say you don’t want to stop, it’s not that big of a deal. If they harass you, ask them who they work for, get the phone number and licence number (it’s always on their ID tags, because that is the law), and make a complaint. You can be assured that that person will never harass anyone as a fundraiser again. It’s as simple as that.

  7. I agree that this is an annoying feature of the high street and it is perhaps made more so by the fact that you are made to feel guilty as you receive a scripted spiel designed to make you feel bad unless and until you acquiesce.

    Like most people I give to a number of charities regularly but that is because I have chosen these charities after long and considered thought and because I associate personally with them. I just don’t get that same feeling after a 5 minute one-way conversation in the street and so as an opener I make it quite clear that I will promise to look at the website and then consider supporting it long term.

    However, in terms of signing a direct debit I make these points (which are true):

    1. ID fraud is the fastest growing crime in the world
    2. Even if the collector is genuine they are still storing details of my bank account and a copy of my signature on a clip board in the street and I have no control whatsoever over its security and that is absolutely unacceptable to me and probably my bank who may take a dim view of my actions if these details were compromised.
    3. I am a senior police officer and I advise people that the risks involved in handing out the above details in the street are not insignificant and should not be taken. This is also the advice of trading standards officials with whom I have dealt with in the past.

    The only places that you should ever sign a direct debit is in a place of business or by post from the comfort and security of your home.

  8. I decided to do a little research into how to be a great fundraiser and I stumbled across your blog.

    I’m shocked by some of the concepts you hold and I have no idea how you believe it’s all about money..

    I know that the company I work for will get paid £300,000 at the end of their contract with the charity after raising just under £2,000,000. It’s great in many ways and I’m sorry that you feel the need to avoid us in such tactics.

    Here’s a tip for you, every “chugger” has been trained to be professional and not rise to any challenge so if you want us to avoid you a simple “fuck off.” will usually do the trick.

    1. I literally just got accosted by one of those bastards in the street. easiest way ive found is tosay you support the exact opposite of what they want. Bernardos? I hate kids. Dog Charity? Allergic to dander. Charity promoting a charity? Allergic to bullshit.

  9. Just a quick note to anyone who thinks there bank details will be used and abused. The same details asked for are on every cheque (signature included) you’ve ever made out and every bank or credit card in your wallet, if you ever lose them you get back the same numbers (sort code and acc number) so hardly high risk. If you’ve ever bought anything online they will be stored on more databases than you can count. If your a senior police officer and dont know this, your either retarded or in need of a pension.

    1. One’s bank details are NOT used as you describe. I have made many purchases via credit card, and it’s the card number they get, NOT my actual account number and sort code.
      Yes, these numbers do appear on a cheque but the cheque is sent via the Royal Mail to a recipient in whom it is reasonable to place my trust (utility providers etc). I would never give these details to someone on the street where their clipboard could be grabbed by an unscrupulous person.
      Finally, you need to learn english. You put “there” instead of “their” in your first sentence, and “your” instead of “you’re” in your last sentence. Maybe you’re the one who is retarded and should take a pension.

  10. Well said Nathan, Clare and Adam!

    I have the priviledge of having several friends that work on the frontline of some extraordinary international and national charities and see how their passion and dedication changes the lives of people in unimaginable trouble in the UK and beyond (often putting their own lives at risk). I also work for an agency (and have done for 7 years now) that provides the money for my friends to do their work and I am constantly amazed by the people that I work alongside and their belief and commitment to making a positive impact on the lives of people and our environment all over the world through face-to-face fundraising.

    While I appreciate the irony of even responding to some of the overt criticism above as fundraisers are taught to rise above that sort of negativity, believe it or not our fundraisers are not commission based. There are some less scupulous organisations out there that only pay their workers commission and this is where you find fundraisers working 80 hour weeks for £200. The pressure on them in this case is obvious and can cause the sort of negative behaviour that people who have responded to this blog claim to have experienced. This is not what we do. Charities pay a single fee for a guaranteed return on their investment which works out to (approx) 4 times that investment. They do not pay anything until this contract is delivered. Often the relationships that fundraisers begin with these donors will last a lifetime (I have been giving to my chosen charities now since 2001, my parents longer). If charities spend the same money on an advertising campaign, there is no guarantee that they will make a healthy return on this. This is why charities actively engage face-to-face fundraisers, and I have seen first hand the difference that these donations make to the work that these charities do.

    I think what we have here as in everything, are people that look for an excuse or an outlet to vent their bitterness. Paul Birkett- what a shame that you feel the need to sit up at nights writing your little letters to make people feel bad about themselves. How insecure you must be to not be able to say “no” and wish the fundraisers that you encounter a “good day”, as they are trained to do to you. As Clare pointed out, report rude people calmly and you will find that they will quickly be pulled off the street and disciplined strongly and probably lose their jobs. I hate the term “chuggers”. Having been injured during a mugging- I find the term ignorant and insulting, as I’m sure most people who have been through a similar experience would.

    This blog’s purpose seems to have been to point out how negative fundraisers are. In doing so it only strengthens our resolve to do good. as most reasonable people know that we are there to do a good thing

    Fundraisers are and will always be extraordinary individuals- hard-working, talented, warm, passionate and often very funny people that are smart, tenacious and- bar the occasional “bad-egg”- generous to a fault and committed to making a difference. They care very little about the bullies that would attempt to ruin their days because these people are very much the minority, and for everyone who would premeditatively (you Pauk Birkett) seek to ruin a fundraiser’s day- there is an amazing member of the public just around the corner that wants to stop and change someone’s life that is less fortunate than themselves. These are the people that we are concerned with.

    Fundraisers- wherever you are, and whatever you may be raising money for- you are amazing and should never forget it.

    Peace.

  11. Matt,

    Far from being retarded may I point out that my cheques may have my bank codes and signature but they do not have my address or date of birth (both of which are often used to confirm identity and frequently appear on direct debit form – most especially the address. Also, cheques (where used – which is rare these days) tend to be issued to trusted businesses and cashed in business accounts. Although never perfect this is a damn sight safer than handing them out on the street.

    As for the pathetic allegation of being ‘retarded’ at least I know how to spell and use correct grammar – a skill that seems to escape you and is doubtless indicative of your own educational prowess. To help you out in your confused state “your a senior police officer” should be “you’re” as in you are instead of the possessive noun that you have erroneously used.

    Have a nice day.

  12. i find it very sad to hear of such resentfulness towards charity street fundraisers. it is such a difficult job only because of the horrible people encountered day to day.

    these workers have decided to give their working time to a charity, in order to earn their daily bread, and many of them are passionate about the charity they work for.

    the fact is, the charities wouldn’t invest in this system if it didn’t help them out. so, if you’re taking the stance that you want to help the charities, these people should be heralded as doing a great job.

    if you don’t want to help the charities, well, i’m sorry but you can’t look down on someone earning an honest wage for a horrible job.

    i really don’t know where this hatrid has come from but any form of hostility towards other human beings is disgusting. you should be ashamed.

  13. Every time 10 seconds of your day is taken up saying no to a charity fundraiser on the street, that person (unless they’re new or about to lose their job) has got an average of 2 people to give an average of £8 a month to the charity. That means that if they’re there every day for a week- you’ll have been inconvenienced for less than a minute and, taking into account a 20% attrition average and a one year average length that people give for, and even the 15% admin percentage the Red Cross(the charity I worked for) spends from their donations – £1,305 has gone to a charity.
    That’s the equivalent of 522 potentially life saving inoculations from cholera for children in Haiti.
    And you’ve had someone ask you for a minute 5 times.

    I’m not trying to get you to sign up, I just think you could spend your time in a wiser fashion.

  14. I use 2 methods:just say walk with me and don’t stop, they never follow, or ask how much the Chief Exec gets and then tell him/her to find out and ask them first, 3 if you include good old fashioned anglo saxon phrases. I have no guilt for them to latch onto, I give to my charity independently so am very comfortable wiith what I do.

  15. Chuggers are a pain in the A, no question about it, but having been a door to door chugger myself I can assure you that the chuggers themselves are not the issue, it’s the horrible management that comes with them. They aren’t well paid for the job they do; in reality you either work double the hours to “make up for charity money you’re not getting back” (regardless of hitting targets) and almost no-one makes bonuses, making it pay about 4 quid an hour in most companies, esp. door-to-door. There is also virtually no-one who genuinely wants to harass you and waste your time on the chugging team itself; management will outright bully them into being more aggressive and get team leaders to stand and watch you until you do it or get fired. For a lot of the people doing it (not as many are students as you think) it’s a pretty desperate job as it is and they don’t want to lose it. Despite this, most chuggers quit within a couple of weeks, and those that don’t are fired. So basically please don’t be rude to them, as funny as it may seem, because they really aren’t bad people or A-holes, they’re just trying to do a really awful job with their boss screaming at them all day. Just say you already give to whatever charity their mac states they work for and walk on.

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