TextGiving allows the UK's 184,000 charities to personalise their own unique six-digit SMS code - called a VIC or Vodafone Individual Code – which can then be used by mobile phone owners to donate up to £10 at one time. Neither the charity or the person donating will face any charges, which means every penny raised goes to charity.
Recent research revealed that a third of Brits are donating less to charity now, than before the recession. Furthermore, just 44 percent of 18 to 24 year olds give to charity compared to 80 percent of over 65s. It is hoped mobile fundraising could turn this around and encoiurage more youngster to donate.
According to think tank Respublica, by 2014 text donations could be worth £96 million a year. However, until now nearly three quarters (72 percent) of charities said the set-up costs associated with text donations had created a barrier to using the service.
"JustTextGiving by Vodafone is speedy, simple, and spontaneous. Around 50 million people carry a mobile so the potential for charities and individuals to raise additional money is very real and exciting," said Vodafone chief executive Guy Laurence
"Whether you're watching a friend run a 5k or at you're at your kid's school concert, you will now be able to give on the spot. Fundraising will never be the same again."
Cancer Research UK is among one of the first charities to sign up to the service. Brits will be able to donate to the charity using the code CRUK11.
"We believe the use of mobile devices for charitable giving is an important future revenue stream which has the potential to tap into a new demographic and create a new age of giving," said director of supporter marketing Natasha Hill.
Registered charities can set up their codes now. The service will be extended to individual fundraisers from June.