Tap-and-give: Charities Adopt Contactless (Part Two)

Now charities will be able to accept contactless donations on the street and in shops.

Tap-and-give: Charities Adopt Contactless (Part Two)

The scheme means that fundraising volunteers for charities can walk about in public with portable contactless terminals which accept Visa and MasterCard contactless cards. However, other payment methods such as Apple Pay and Android Pay will also be accepted meaning those wanting to donate will be able to do so with wearables as well, such as the Apple watch.

The concept, which is hoped to greatly boost donations, has been in the planning for the last ten months and has involved dialogue between a range of interested parties.

“Cancer Research UK has been working alongside the payments industry, through the UK Cards Association, and a consortium of charities to scope the potential for contactless giving,” says Michael Docherty, director of digital and supporter experience at Cancer Research UK.. “Conversations have been on-going, and this trial represents a small step in the right direction for charities learning about and expanding contactless donations,” he added.

The UK Cards Association (UKCA) has been involved in several contactless developments in different industries recently, the most notable being the recent announcement of contactless payment for transport throughout the UK, based on a similar system to that used by TfL.

For this charity scoped scheme they took a communicative role between the interested parties and were not directly involved in the schemes development.

However, they admit that they have identified a number of environments in which these donation devices can work. One such idea to further expand the concept is to have similar devices installed on the donation boxes in museums “where you could tap your card or phone instead of dropping coins or notes into a donations box”, says a spokesperson for UKCA.

Although charities have in many ways already digitised, by being able to take direct debit donations or online and mobile donations and through the use of apps, this concept certainly represents a step forward in digitising the charity sector.

Docherty advocates that digitisation is crucial to the survival of the industry. “We’re continuously looking at improving our fundraising and services to supporters, of which digital is a key part,” he said. “Over the last few years we’ve seen a drastic increase in the number of people engaging through digital channels, and we will continue to listen to our supporters and do our best to make it easy and satisfying for them to help us raise more money and continue to fund our life-saving research, as digitisation happens around us.