Children’s Charity Fundraising Events Are ‘Cash-Wasting Larks’

A charity for disadvantaged children that is supported by the Princess Royal and Lawrence Dallaglio, the former England rugby captain, has been accused of wasting money on “larks”.

The Wooden Spoon spent two thirds of its income last year on fundraising events including dinners and golf days, according to Intelligent Giving, an independent charity watchdog. Its report said: “Sometimes, a charity gobbles up so much cash with its overheads that alarm bells begin to ring. And that’s exactly what happened when we profiled the Wooden Spoon Society.

For every pound that this rugby union-affiliated grant-giver spends, 65p goes on admin and fundraising. Only 35p actually goes to the intended beneficiaries: needy children. Are the larks of its fundraising events overshadowing the benefits it’s supposed to bring to children’s charities?”

Chris Gill, the charity’s interim chief executive, said that guidelines were being drawn up to ensure that all events delivered at least half of their income to good causes. He added that the rising health and safety costs of events had limited the amounts the charity could pass on to good causes.