Want to check on your donations? … there’s an app for that

One of the country’s biggest charities is planning to use a smartphone app to boost donor confidence in its work.

Oxfam is launching the ‘My Oxfam’ app, which it is hoped will make donating ‘easy and rewarding’ by providing its supporters with information about its projects.

The innovation aims to increase transparency in the work the charity does. Video diaries will be available which will show donors how their money makes a difference to people, by telling real life stories.

The move is aimed at stemming recent negative public perceptions towards charities in general. According to a recent Populus survey, conducted on behalf of the Charity Commission, trust in charities fell last year to the lowest level since 2005, when records first began, leading to the Commission’s director warning that the findings amount to a “call for action” amongst the third sector.

Recent scandals which have been blamed for a downturn in public perception include the collapse of Kids Company, the suicide of charity donor Olive Cooke who was inundated with 3,000 charity mailshots, along with reports of charity executive being paid huge salaries.

Oxfam’s Head of Fundraising, Paul Vanags, said: “Charities are striving to meet the public’s demand for a closer, more modern and responsive relationship with the charities they support … ‘My Oxfam’ provides a window on to the lives changed by our supporters’ generosity and allows users to control their giving from the palm of their hand.”

Users of the My Oxfam app can also keep track of how much they have donated through sponsorship, items donated to shops, or cash payments. They can also adjust their monthly donations, for example when there is a humanitarian emergency that they wish to support.