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The Struggles For Animal Charity Fundraisers Are Real In 2024

As an animal lover, I have always supported animal charities and been passionate about finding ways to encourage others to get behind them too.

When I discovered that animal charity fundraisers are facing a challenging time, it prompted me to think about how branded products could play a pivotal role in helping them.

Charity merchandise is a popular method of building visibility and support for different causes, as well as an opportunity to raise funds. It has always been a huge sector for us at Merchandise and I can only hope it will be a game-changer for animal charity fundraisers in the coming months.

But let’s start by looking at the obstacles that animal charity fundraisers are facing in 2024!

Cost of living

It won’t be news to anyone that one of the biggest factors impacting animal charity fundraisers is the cost of living crisis. I mean, who isn’t it affecting?

It has affected both charity service users and supporters, presenting new challenges to the sector. 

Charlotte Weatherley, the policy manager at the Chartered Institute of Fundraising, puts it like this: “Charities are facing a double whammy at the moment…Inflation means that demand for services is rising, and on top of that, those services are getting more expensive to run. So the need for donations, whether it’s a one-off or a regular one…It really has never been more important.”

With the increased need for charitable donations and the rising cost of running these services, there is a growing amount of pressure on all charities, and the recent announcement that the UK has entered a recession is only going to make things more difficult over the next couple of years.

Donor drops

Another consequence of the cost of living crisis is that the general public is pinching their wallets and tightening their belts to manage the financial pressures they are being faced with.

The case is not that people no longer want to support charitable causes, they simply can’t afford to so they either cut their donations or stop completely.

Enthuse’s Spring 2023 Report revealed that 60% of the U.K. public found it harder to give to charity than they did six months prior and, according to Charities Aid Foundation (CAF)’s ‘U.K. Giving Report 2023’, 17% of people said they would be likely to cut their charitable donations to manage their bills.

Though the economic crisis brings uncertainty, it is not all doom and gloom. 

A report by the Blackbaud Institute said that over 50% of donors said no impact had been made on the way they give, with younger generations giving more now than pre-Covid times.

Expense of fundraising events

As mentioned when I spoke about the cost of living crisis, fundraising events are becoming more costly due to inflation. From hiring event spaces to purchasing food, charities require more funds to host an event to raise further funds - can you see the problem here?

The cycle has created an impossible situation that leaves charities having to find other, more cost-effective ways to raise money (and we’ll get to this shortly).

It has also become more difficult to sell tickets to fundraising events which brings us back to the cost of living crisis. It seems to be the root cause of all the current struggles being faced in the charity sector.

Tough competition

The sad reality is that the number of charities in existence is growing at a fast rate and the public is even more aware of them all thanks to social media. 

With global conflicts in the headlines of the news, natural disasters on the rise due to climate change, and the cost of living crisis leaving 18% of the UK now living in poverty, charities are needed more than ever. 

This leaves supporters in a moral dilemma where they must choose the cause or causes, that mean the most to them. This might be a charity that has helped them or a loved one, or a charity that helps groups they feel most aligned with or whose story has more of an emotional or personal hook. 

Sadly, this can leave many charities being overlooked and left to try and fight for the attention and support that other big, more notable charities have garnered - animal charities being a solid example of this. 

Can Promotional Merchandise Help Charity Fundraisers In This Current Climate?

The short answer is yes. But I have plenty more to say about that.

Cost effective and full of impact

Promotional merchandise is a cost-effective and impactful marketing tool that can be used to connect with people on a slightly more personal level. 

Thank Supporters

Charities can provide promotional gifts to donors as a way of saying “thankyou”, showing gratitude for their support and increasing the likelihood of their continued support. 

A small but thoughtful sign of appreciation, such as custom charity pin badges, promotional teddy bears or printed charity bags, can go a long way toward building a loyal legion of supporters.

Raise awareness of your cause

Merchandise giveaways are also a great way to create brand and cause awareness, especially at a fundraising event. The wide range of branded product options that charities can choose from means that they can find an item that aligns with their cause or their fundraising activity.

For example, printed event SWAG, printed t-shirts and event flags or banners are just some charity merchandise ideas that work well as walking advertisements for your cause. 


Finally, promotional gifts can be used as an opportunity for charities to raise additional funds through their sale. It’s common practice for charities to create branded products and charge a small price for them. This allows people to purchase an item of use and value, such as a promotional bag, custom wrist band or printed water bottle, whilst showing their support for a charity with a financial donation. 

To help you get started in your search for charity promotional items, I have put together the top 7 merchandise items for the animal charity sector:


Looking For Some Great Pet Or Animal Related Merchandise Ideas?

You can view more pet related promotional products here

Need support from our experienced Merchandise team? Give us a call at 01895 438 459. We would be glad to help with merchandise suggestions, samples and visuals to support you in any event.




Written By Sarah - Key Account Manager At Merchandise Ltd

Tel: 01895 438459


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