Cashless Donations are Flying for The Air Ambulance Service

The Air Ambulance Service has had a flying start with their first foray into cashless donations.

Written by Vicky Hewlett April 29, 2022

The Air Ambulance Service, which operates the national Children’s Air Ambulance and the local air ambulance services for Warwickshire, Northamptonshire, Derbyshire, Leicestershire and Rutland has had a flying start with their first foray into cashless donations.

The charity was gifted a number of CollecTin More portable donation kiosks which are installed with the Give A Little point-of-donation software platform. So far, they have managed to raise over £20k in cashless donations.

Lucy Scallan, Fundraising Operations Manager for The Air Ambulance Service explained: ‘We are well aware that everyone is carrying less cash these days and we need to future proof our fundraising. In time we’ll see income drop where we’ve been dependent on cash so we need to have a viable alternative. The public doesn’t expect you to put up barriers so you need to make it easy for them to give to you. It’s vital both in terms of income generation but also for the supporter experience to give donors a variety of ways to give.’

Lucy continues: ‘We were already looking into cashless options before the pandemic and Covid has really helped QR codes in particular become more mainstream and this has helped cashless giving become more affordable to small charities. Card reader machines like SumUp, one of Give A Little’s payment processor partners, have also become more affordable for charities. The pandemic has also meant that our interest in finding a cashless giving solution has sped up to match the public’s expectations.’

The charity has seen the most success with using the CollecTin devices with Give A Little at their fundraising gala events. According to Lucy, these events are ideal for collecting contactless donations as they are typically in venues with good connectivity and they have a captive audience who are expecting to pay for raffle tickets and auction prizes.

One of the main reasons for picking the Give A Little platform was the ability to create as many campaigns as they like: 

‘We operate three different air ambulance services, two regional and one national so with Give A Little, we’re able to brand the campaigns for the service we’re raising for at the time. We are also able to separate campaigns out as merchandise sales so our finance team can claim VAT or donations so we can claim Gift Aid, which is really useful. In future, we are looking forward to using campaigns to track donation revenue for particular events. It’s great that we can brand them with our colours and add different images and videos so the screens look really professional, which is important for the donor experience. We are also looking forward to trying out Give A Little web campaigns as you can download QR codes really easily and point donors to tailored fundraising campaigns, which we think will be really useful for our volunteers who are doing bucket collections.’’

On why she would recommend the Give A Little platform to other charities, Lucy had the following to say: ‘The Give A Little admin dashboard is very user friendly and updates impressively quickly which is great when I’m training volunteers on how to use it. The fact that you can update and change the campaigns quickly and easily is also a real plus and I like that you can turn the gift aid feature on or off remotely.’

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