Icons for various iphone apps by UK charities
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Posted by Linda

Hi everyone - welcome to part 3 of our ongoing hunt for and review of UK charities who have entered the smartphone app world.

WellChild

Asks for donations? Yes
Links to website donate form? Yes
Responsive giving forms? No
Text to donate? Yes
Has other monetisation? No
Has native iPad version? No

WellChild are a charity that helps sick children and their families with care, support and research.

Prince Harry is a patron of the charity and well child are known for their well-child nurses who are networked across the United Kingdom to help improve the lives of children who are sick and the pressures on their families.

So, onto the app.

When you open the app you are met with a big logo of the charity and a picture of a child and are invited to 'swipe to be the headline topics'. When you swipe through the next screen you are first asked if you can 'lend a helping hand', followed by an invitation to joined the 'WellChild Family Community', as well as information on a special charity skydive you can take part in to raise money for the organisation.

Apart from swiping through the main screen menu they are five icons along the bottom of the app. These are listed from left to right as 'home', 'news', 'events', 'donate', and a 'more' icon.

Naturally the home button takes you back to the home screen of the app, while the news button takes you to what appears to be news feed, but the last item is from 2 January 2013, so we were worried that feed may be broken,  as when you visit the main website you can see many more new stories have been posted to it since that date.

When you select the 'Events' icon this them goes to a screen which lists three events that you can take part in help raise money for the charity.

When you select the donate icon you are then presented with four options - the first is to donate by text, and when you select that you are offered to donate £2, £5, or £10 by text message.

The next option is to donate by card and selecting that takes you to a page on their website we can donate in a more traditional way. Unfortunately the donation page is not responsive so many people might abandon the giving process at this stage.

The next option is to donate my phone and you're presented with a phone number on which you can call to donate by credit or debit card. If you press the button it automatically starts the phone call.

Lastly, there is an option to shop with 'Give as you live', which means that each time something is bought, a percentage of the sale profit goes to the charity. Unfortunately when you click this it takes you to a screen that goes nowhere.

Underneath the four donation options there is some text about payroll giving and leaving a legacy donation to the charity.

The final option in the set of five icons that run across the bottom of the app is the more icon. This takes you to a single screen that is mainly centred around sharing the app on Facebook or liking their page on Facebook, sharing on twitter, emailing a friend, sending a text message to a friend or adding a review of the app to the App Store.

There is also some general information about the charity as well as system information about the app including version number and where it was built.

Meningitis Trust - Meningitis App

Asks for donations? No
Links to website donate form? No
Responsive giving forms? N/A
Text to donate? N/A
Has other monetisation? No
Has native iPad version? No

The Meningitis Trust helps around 20,000 people every year with a variety of services that provide support to those affected by meningitis.

The charity depends on donations from the public to keep their work going. The charity aims to help people affected by meningitis get their lives back together as well as raise awareness of the disease so that more deaths can be prevented.

When you open up there is quite a handy message that thank you for downloading and also gives a hint of what is included within the app. We found this very useful summary.

Each time you return to the home screen of the app it gives you a random fact about meningitis. The other options on the main screen are to find out more about meningitis and the signs and symptoms of the disease. There is also an option to take a meningitis quiz.

The meningitis quiz is a clever and engaging way to raise awareness of the disease. It asks you 5 questions that include 'How is meningitis treated?' and 'What prevents meningitis?'.

When you take the quiz it does make you realise that you might not know as much as you thought you did about the disease.

For example, did you know that vaccinations are the only way to prevent meningitis and the vaccines given by the NHS in the UK have reduced the amount of cases by a huge amount.

One section of the main navigation is called 'Symptoms'. We were really impressed with the content here - first it asks if you want to see symptoms in 'babies and toddlers' or 'children and adults'. The information is laid out in an engaging way with good illustrations for various signs and symptoms along with the text. You can also filter the symptoms so they show septicaemia or meningitis on their own, or together.

There's also an option in the main set of icons across the bottom of the app called 'Call'. When you select this you can search for a local GP, find your local accident and emergency department and other useful phone numbers.

The app encourages some sharing beneath the 'More' icon by emailing a friend but there is now option to spread the word via key social media channels like Twitter and Facebook.

The app does not ask for donations in any way either and is purely awareness raising in its scope.

It would be interesting if charities could share data on how many people donate via apps and also to see if the charities are even tracking app generated transactions at all.

British Heart Foundation - Healthy Heart Recipe Finder

Asks for donations? No
Links to website donate form? No
Responsive giving forms? N/A
Text to donate? N/A
Has other monetisation? Not really but it does pop up little messages to pages on their website, some of which are supporter-oriented
Has native iPad version? No

The British Heart Foundation work to help research into heart disease and campaign to change legislation in the favour of helping to protect the health of the nation's hearts.

This app is essentially recipe-based as is low on awareness raising content (apart from obviously around how you can change your diet to help your heart).

When you open the app you are presented with a 'cover-view' layout of 'BHF a Favourite' recipes from the overall selection of recipes.

You can also favourite your best recipes that you can find from browsing the main list that is ordered into the following categories of main ingredient:

  • Beef
  • Pulses
  • Chicken
  • Eggs and dairy
  • Pasta and noodles
  • Bread and baked
  • Rice
  • Fish
  • Pork
  • Fruit
  • Vegetables
  • Tofu

Here at want2donate we love tofu, so went straight for that section.

When we selected it we got a rather strange promotional banner that didn't really leave long enough to read it with ease that basically advertised the BHF shop. Unfortunately you couldn't click the ad to go to the shop so we were worried that people would be unlikely to manually type it into a browser address bar after committing it to memory or making another kind of note.

We were then presented with two tofu recipes that did sound really nice. One was for a spice tofu and carrot burgers - the other was for mutter 'paneer' made with tofu instead of paneer cheese.

From looking at just those two recipes we definitely would try them so we expect most people will find something heart-healthy that they would like to cook from the list above.

It's quite useful as well that in addition to having the recipes set out in the categories above you can also search by medical conditions like diabetes or high look pressure.

In addition you can filter by vegan, vegetarian, nut free and gluten free as well as by breakfast, main course etc. you can also sort the dishes by country of origin which are listed in the categories British, Caribbean, Indian sub-continent and Italian.

Some other useful features worth mentioning are that you can 'favourite' recipes to have a quick go to list of the ones you like the best. The app also keeps note of most viewed recipes although we weren't sure how useful that would be when you can make your own favourites list.

We will be back soon with part four of our charity app reviews. So far we have reviewed nine apps and we have found at least another 20 so this look like it is going to be long blog series. But it is really interesting to us here at want2donate as we are digital geeks and it's exciting to see what all the UK's wonderful charities are up to in this new channel of digital communication.

Catch up on the other parts to this blog series:

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