9 Things You (Probably) Didn’t Know About Where Amnesty’s Money Comes From

Amnesty is best known for our research and campaigning, but none of that work would be possible without the generous donations of our supporters.

1. We don’t accept money from governments…

…other than in very limited circumstances, including human rights education, which make up less than 1% of our total income. We are fully independent of governments, political ideologies, economic interests and religions.

2. Over 81% of our income comes from individual donations

And much of this will be from regular monthly gifts. Having a steady, predictable flow of money means we can better plan our human rights research and campaigning.

3. 95% of our income is ‘unrestricted’

This means we are not asked to use it in a particular way, so we can spend most of our money wherever in the world the need is greatest. It also means we have the flexibility to respond quickly to emergency situations, such as the ongoing crisis in Syria.

4. Street fundraising works

Last year, we raised at least €4 million from new supporters through face-to-face fundraising, despite how hard it can be. “People deliberately sidestep you, ignore you, avoid eye contact or run away,” says Hannah Diaz, who spent a day as a street fundraiser last year. “And you have to be fluent in Amnesty’s work. As the voice of the charity, you must have current information on reports and campaigns.”

5. Donating makes you an activist

You don’t need to march down streets or wave a protest banner – by donating money you can fight for justice across the world.

6. Our average annual donation is €90

That’s less than €1.73 a week. But without lots of these donations, our life-changing work on human rights wouldn’t be possible.

7. The top three human rights issues we spend your money on are…

…protecting refugees and migrants, fighting abuses of legal systems and promoting free speech.

8. For every €1 we spend on fundraising, we raise about €3.40

What’s more, Amnesty supporters are very loyal and stay with us for a long time – highlighting their commitment to long-term human rights change.

9. It’s really easy to donate

Just click ‘donate’ in the top right hand corner of this page and follow the steps. You’ll be part of a vibrant global movement, fighting for human rights worldwide.

This article also appeared in the January-March 2015 issue of Wire, Amnesty’s global magazine.