Romanians gave 56% more via direct debit in 2019 compared to the previous year, totaling €2.6 million, according to figures from the Association for Community Relations (ARC Romania).
ARC Romania, which developed the national infrastructure for regular giving and text giving in the country, recorded 539,487 direct debit donations last year, up 51% compared to 2018 and the highest growth seen in recent years. These donations totalled €2.6million, with 65,885 people giving via this means by the end of the year. Over 28,000 of these were new supporters.
Average donation size for direct debit giving also rose, for the fifth consecutive year, to reach €4.8.
Camelia Mates, director of the Donation Mechanisms Program at ARC commented:
“Several factors are driving the growth of regular giving in Romania. Firstly, individual involvement in the community is rising, with more and more people protesting for democratic values, becoming interested in the common good, and aiming to bring about change through volunteering and donating for a better society.
“Secondly, but equally as important, a significant number of Romanian charities have come to realise that individual donations have an immense value besides the obvious financial one in terms of the power of the number of people trusting the charity and investing in their campaign. In addition, monthly giving brings stability, providing a predictable income flow that is very important for charities operating in an insecure environment.”
ARC Romania also recorded substantial year on year growth in SMS giving, with a 38% increase in the amount raised in 2019 to more than €8.3m. Almost 3.5m text messages were sent in 2019, with the number of donations given increasing by 22.5% compared to 2018, and directed to 87 fundraising campaigns. 90% of donations are €2, with charities in the country able to ask for €2 or €4. 2019 also saw just under 211,000 new monthly donors recruited via SMS giving.
Overall so far, between the launch of ARC Romania’s platform in June 2012, and 2019, Romanians have donated around €29m.
Looking ahead, Mates added:
“Based on our experience, we also expect to see further growth in regular giving for 2020 although not at the same level as in 2019. We are planning for a year of consolidation of the growth seen over the past three years and a year to improve the donations process, especially those received through direct debit.”