Changing behaviours

impact survey snipet

It’s been over three years since I embarked on creating The DoNation: three long, exhausting, and often scary years.

But three exciting and seriously fulfilling years too. Nothing makes my work more worthwhile than hearing feedback from our Doers, and so sifting through our latest survey results last week was a strangely enjoyable task.

Whilst the site may still be in Beta and there is a lot of room for improvement, it’s clear that The DoNation is already having a good and powerful impact on people’s lives.  I thought I’d share a few of the highlights from the survey with you.

I’m going to dive straight in with the most staggering statistic of all: between one and two years after making their pledge, 81% of Doers said that they were still doing it. That’s some pretty impressive long term change.

But back to the beginning:

68% of people using The DoNation to raise DoActions said it made them feel more able to inspire and engage their friends on green issues.

It wasn’t a surprise to hear that 67% of people using it as a sponsorship tool found it helped to motivate them to train harder – I know that when training for our Grim mud run it was definitely the thought of people’s support that got me up off my seat and out plodding around the park.

Fitting right in with our theory of change, the most common motivation for making a pledge was the desire to support a friend, colleague, or family member (76% listed this as their motivation).  This is where we’re really different to most standard pledge tools – using the social nature of sponsorship to tap into a far more powerful and personal motivation.

This personal element is powerful in more than one way. It also makes 77% of Doers more committed to keeping their pledge, and 71% more honest about how they got on.

Another sweet spot of The DoNation is how it closes the gap between people’s intentions and their actions. We are all guilty of it: having the best intentions to do good, but leaving it until tomorrow. For two thirds of our Doers, their pledge gave them the final nudge needed to actually get on and do it.  Less than ¼ said they’d have done it anyway.

Finally, many people said they felt better about themselves, got fitter, saved money, time, water or waste as a result of their pledges. It’s not just about carbon.

So thank you to all who answered the survey, to all who have Done, and to all who are still Doing… keep it up.

“My pledge was something that I had already wanted to do but thought it was too hard.  The person I was supporting cycled across Australia, so in his honour I redefined ‘too hard’ and found I could do my pledge after all.” – Lexy

“Great way to spur people to action and to get them to think about sustainability. Giving money can be a bit of a cop out and doesn’t lead to sustainable change.” – Shem Weekes

“Monetary charity can create a culture of dependence, doesn’t teach the man to fish and rarely addresses the cause. It also enables people to pledge and move on without engaging.” – an anonymous Doer

And congratulations to Chris Catchpole who won our survey draw, and has a lovely Abel & Cole veg box flying his way. Bon Appétit!

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