Chuggers with buckets is an all-time low

Chuggers holding collection buckets in Leigh town centre
Chuggers holding collection buckets in Leigh town centre
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As chairman of Charity Aid and a keen charity fund-raising volunteer I’m appalled at the new Oxfam tactic of giving chuggers buckets to hold.

These people are nothing but profiteering parasites, exploiting the name of charities for their own gain. We volunteers are doing our utmost to differentiate ourselves in the public eye from chuggers.

Charities should be doing more to encourage volunteer groups like ours instead of trying to make chuggers look like us bucket collectors.

Chuggers are the bane of volunteer collectors. Only recently an entire, well-established volunteer group in Aldeburgh quit en masse as they were so angry about the increased number of Macmillan chuggers in their area.

Charities try to justify paying chugger companies by claiming every £1 they give to the companies raises £2 or more for charity but none can provide supporting figures. I challenged Cancer Research UK about this claim and they suddenly clammed up. I’m sure Oxfam will try to defend their new bucket tactic but have they asked their volunteers what they think?

Giving chuggers buckets marks an all-time low for the morality and credibility of Oxfam.

A chugger who told me he earned £12 an hour called me an idiot for collecting for nothing. According to Oxfam – he’s probably right!

The chuggers’ own mouthpiece - the PFRA – concedes that up to the first £145 donated via a chugger goes straight to him and the agency which employs him.

If people knew that, would they donate via chuggers or choose to donate directly - where their money actually reaches the charity?

This new bucket tactic is just another deceptive way of getting the naive to part with their cash.

Peter Quinn

Chairman of Charity Aid