Category Media News

Is Santa’s secret out? Christmas giving unwrapped – TheGivingMachine explores the office tradition we either love or hate

TheGivingMachine's Secret Santa

TheGivingMachine’s Secret Santa- join in today!

It’s the festive office activity that polarises us – discovering the name you have pulled out of the hat belongs to either good old Claire in HR, or the guy in Marketing you’ve said hello to once in the kitchen. Love it or hate it, the Western Christmas tradition known as Secret Santa, where members of a group or community are randomly assigned a person to whom they anonymously give a gift has been an office tradition for the last 30 years.

It is believed that American philanthropist Larry Dean Stewart started the trend, who lived between 1948 and 2007 and made millions through a career in cable TV. To help those in need in the same way he had received help during his life, he anonymously handed out $100 bills over 26 years totalling $1.6 million. At an average amount of £5, the office version of Secret Santa is on a somewhat smaller scale but symbolises the same gift of giving during the season of goodwill. But why do we love to give?

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The power of one click: Hertfordshire charities benefit from boosted fundraising thanks to social enterprise TheGivingMachine

heGivingMachine - helping online shoppers to give for free to causes they care about.

TheGivingMachine – helping online shoppers to give for free to causes they care about.

Charities across Hertfordshire have benefited from over £65,000 thanks to a unique form of fundraising that enables online shoppers to give to charity for free.

Bishops Stortford company, TheGivingMachine, was set up by four Dads in 2007 who wanted to build an affiliate marketing programme to benefit social causes. The not-for-profit site operates by partnering with 1,500 participating retailers who pay a commission in return for sales referrals to their websites. This commission is then donated to up to four local or national charities of the shopper’s choice when a sale is made, making the donation free for the shopper. Over 82,000 Givers have signed up so far, supporting 6,700 UK schools and charities. Read more

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Do you prefer to support local or national charities?

Do you support a local or national charity – and why?

Our recent Giving Opinions survey found 77 per cent of respondents would prefer to support a local charity over a national one working for the same cause.  The survey also revealed a view that donations to smaller charities were more likely to be spent on the cause as opposed to costs associated with running the organisation. What do you think?

To see more of the Charity Times article featuring our survey, please click on the following link:


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Social Saturday – a day to celebrate Social Enterprises

Richard Morris - TheGivingMachine Low Res

Hello everyone,

Tomorrow is Social Saturday, a special day where we can celebrate the achievements of more than 70,000 social enterprises whose aim is to put money back into communities. We’re glad to be one of them. Together, we are helping to build a better place to work and live. Please do support the businesses that are taking part where you can. Have a look on the Social Saturday website and follow #socialsaturday on Twitter.

TheGivingMachine continues to support local and national charities across the UK and thanks to our members, we have generated more than 1.2 million donations to good causes. We’re proud to carry the Social Enterprise badge, which is an independent verification that we our business is about working towards the social or common good.

So congratulations to all of you who have used TheGivingMachine to generate free donations. Don’t forget to download our new Shop&Give reminder from our website to make it even easier to contribute to the causes that matter to you.

It is fantastic to see more and more business join in the social enterprise revolution. Together we can all make a difference to the way we live. Social Saturday is a great way to raise awareness that as consumers we have the ability to make a difference by choosing who we buy from.

TheGivingMachine team


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New Shop&Give reminder now available – Never miss a donation!



Shop&Give reminder now available to install




Every time you search for shops and products online you’ll get a handy reminder in your search results telling you which shops give free donations.

This genius piece of tech ensures you can give a free donation every time you shop online, plus you’ll be able to see which shops give the highest donation for the same products, so you’ll be able to raise more for the causes you care about.



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We’re changing, plus great new features – coming soon!

Why are we changing our branding?

Our new logo will soon be introduced on the website

Our new logo will soon be introduced on the website


TheGivingMachine was founded in 2006  by four Dads who wanted to give something back to their communities. TheGivingMachine brings together shoppers, retailers and charitable organisations and delivers a positive social outcome for all involved:

  •  Charitable organisations from schools, community groups to any UK based international charity all get access to a new source of funds, without compromising existing activities.
  • Retailers get new customers and see referral commissions going to good causes chosen by their customers,  increasing brand loyalty and their sustainability objectives.
  • Shoppers or ‘Givers’ by shopping online via TheGivingMachine are able to donate to any cause they choose at no additional cost.

We felt this simple mechanism needed a simplified, unique brand that worked  effectively across online and print mediums as well as small formats as we continue to significantly accelerate our giving plans. Read more

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TheGivingMachine wins place on Deloitte Social Innovation Pioneers Programme

Delighted to be able to share our latest news in being selected as one of the participants on the Deloitte Social Innovation Pioneers – here is a copy of our Press Release:-

Deloittes Social Innovation PioneersTheGivingMachine







24th June 2014

Online shopping portal TheGivingMachine, which encourages shoppers to ‘Click, Shop, Give for Free’, is gearing up for growth after being selected as part of Deloitte’s Social Innovation Pioneers Programme, it announced today. TheGivingMachine will gain access to professional expertise and guidance as part of the programme, for the next stage of its journey as one of the UK’s largest non-profit social business.

Deloitte’s Social Innovation Pioneers Programme has supported 46 socially innovative businesses since launching in 2012, helping them grow to scale and become investment-ready. 80% of the second year of Pioneers reported increased employment during their time on the programme and an average growth in turnover of 38% was reported across the 16 enterprises. Read more

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The Guardian’s “50 Voices” (feat. Richard Morris)

Guardian to 10 soc ent stories in 2013

Just in case you missed it – our Richard Morris features!

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19th Dec ’13 News Release: TheGivingMachine hits one millionth donation to its ‘free giving’ model to local charities

The ‘season of goodwill’ boosts donations through TheGivingMachine, with more than £695,000 now raised for favourite schools and charities across the UK.

Family shopping online via TheGivingMachineTheGivingMachineTM has exceeded its one millionth charity donation through its unique not-for-profit ‘Click, Shop and Give for Free’ online portal. Every sale channelled through TheGivingMachine website converts to charity cash for good causes throughout the UK.

So far, almost £26m of sales have generated more than £695,000 to charity. With online sales forecast to boom during the festive period, TheGivingMachine is urging shoppers to share whilst they shop, and provide much needed cash to their selected charities.
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Give an extra gift this Christmas

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