Everywhere we look now we are surrounded by gloom and bad news; perfect timing for us to share some good news with you!
This week we added up the total money raised in January 2021 by loved ones on their notices on funeral-notices.co.uk. We are really proud that the total exceeded all previous successes at a huge £170,212
We are so proud of this achievement; your achievement! Thank you every Funeral Director, Arranger or Team Member who added a donation profile into notices booked to appear in January.
In life before lockdowns many of you will have been using tried and tested, simple and trusted ways to collect and distribute donations made in memory of loved ones. A collection plate at the service, cheques or cash dropped in to the office and a process by which you get the funds to the chosen charity. Then came the pandemic, lockdowns and a life lived in isolated bubbles. It was around this time we noticed an increase in the number of people taking advantage of our online donation service and the amount of money raised increased significantly.
Online donations are one of the few success stories of the last year.
From speaking with charities we know that they have had a terrible year financially and the value they place on in-memory donations has never been as high. Charities really value the additional funds online donations allow them to claim as Gift Aid - an extra 25p for every pound donated.
Online donations also provide a solution to current restrictions on attendance at funerals or visiting your offices in person with a cheque. In addition, being able to donate online makes it easy for friends and family all over the world to contribute to the legacy of their loved ones.
We have put together a few FAQs on donations below to help your families raise these vital funds for charity.
In fact this is something we would actively encourage because it benefits your families. We've talked about our audience before and we know our notices receive more views than any other online notice provider; this puts us in the unique position of providing a strong audience to view your notices and make donations, add tributes, photos and share memories. It's fantastic if you are able to provide online donations; even better if you take advantage of our audience as well and give families even more opportunities to raise money in memory of their loved ones.
For a great example of how adding donations to a notice can complement an existing collection, please take a look at this notice for the late Matthew Ruddell
Our online donation facility is available on all main notices regardless of whether the notice is going in one of our print publications. We are currently offering free online notices that may help you with this, we have put together some information on how to book those here.
We have tried to make the process for including an online donation facility on the notices we publish as easy as possible.
If you prefer to book notices via the telephone or email, we will automatically include a donation profile if donations are mentioned in the notice. If you book this way and you would like to add online donations in, but the charity is not mentioned in the notice, please let us know and we can arrange that for you.
If you prefer to book your notices yourself using our simple Self Serve Booking Portal
, simply select 'death notice' from the classifications then in the relationship field choose ‘Funeral Arrangements / Funeral Director’. Our booking system automatically detects if the notice text contains a charity name and offers to link the collection to the appropriate charity; you don't need to amend your usual wording in a notice eg: 'Donations gratefully received for Cancer Research'.
If for some reason the charity the family has chosen does not automatically appear, or the family are choosing not to mention donations in the notice text, simply search for the charity name in the box provided and select the correct charity.
As ever, all notices are checked for accuracy of content, including checking the correct charity(ies) have been selected, before being published, and a copy sent to the person placing the notice for them to check the content and the charity(ies) selected.
As soon as a notice is live on funeral-notices.co.uk the donation facility is ready to start receiving donations. Many of our notices are published online instantly meaning families can start using their notice to gather donations within 15 minutes of the notice being booked.
The donation facility remains live on notices for 5 weeks from the point of booking.
All notices that have a collection show the charity detail, as well as the total raised to date and Gift Aid claimed.
When someone makes a donation on a notice, they are given the opportunity to publish a tribute on the notice, letting the family know they have contributed and sending vital good wishes. Tributes added to notices offer a reply function meaning families can thank people for their kind donations on their notice too.
When the collection is closed this button is removed from the notice (which remains online indefinitely), the viewer is told the final collection totals and invited to donate directly to the charity(ies).
Once a collection is closed, our Donation Partners Donatis
send an email to you confirming the amount raised, a list of donors and the amounts they contributed. This can be sent to the family. At the same time, funds are transferred to the nominated charity (ies), asking them to acknowledge receipt via email.
A great way to encourage people to donate on their notices is by mentioning in the notice how and where donations may be made.
"Donations may be made via funeral-notices.co.uk" is a simple and effective way of pointing people in the right direction. Take a look at this notice for the late Mandy Loye
- £1276 raised for charity plus Gift Aid. This notice, which also appeared in print, clearly informs families on where to donate.
Our notices also offer a 'family email' facility. We recommend taking advantage of this by adding a contact email on behalf of the family to your booking (or by supplying us with a family email at point of booking). As soon as that notice is published on funeral-notices.co.uk we send an email with a link back to the notice, encouraging families to share their notice via social media or messenger services.
It is easy to find a notice on our website too. Our simple search function on the homepage allows you to search by name, area (county/city/town/village), newspaper or date of publication. It is helpful to understand how to find a notice so you can show families where and how to look once their notice is published. If your notice is published in one of our online news site areas or newspaper online sites, for example Yorkshire Live
and Liverpool Echo
, then notices may also be found by clicking on the 'Funeral Notices' tab at the top of the homepage then clicking 'Today's Notices'.
Funeral Directors who choose us to provide notices on their website (Preferred Partners) often choose to direct families over to their own website to donate. In this example, G Holland & Sons Funeral Directors
make sure their notices include the phrase 'Donations for (eg Prostate Cancer) may be donated via www.ghollandfunerals.co.uk'. They have a link on their page named 'Funeral Notices & Donations' and encourage families to use that to find their notice and donate. A really simple solution for them and something we offer to every Funeral Director in the UK, for free.
It is our hope that the kind donations made on notices placed by Funeral Directors continues to grow through the year. It is a really remarkable achievement and heart-warming news in the midst of this winter lockdown. Please consider adding an online donation collection to every notice requested by families. To help raise even more for charities, the free online notices we offer at the moment are ideal to be used just as a means of creating an online collection service, more information on how to book those here.
More information on our online donation service may be found here.
To help, we have compiled a leaflet for families on online donations, please feel free to download and print it: Donations in Memory of a Loved One.
Thank you for reading.
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