‘ETHOS’ Gift Cards are a gifting equivalent of specific or multistore gift cards. With store gift cards, a purchase is made to gift to a third party a spend value, usually as a Christmas, birthday or occasion gift. ETHOS gift cards, bought in supermarkets major stores, can be selected in store, for a range of charities, and processed at checkout. The credit card sized card itself can be presented to the third party to memorialise a sum gifted to a specific charity on their behalf. Cards can also be purchased as a personal donation to a given charity. In either case the gift is made with no forms to fill in, no direct debits to set up, no bank transfers to initiate nor cheques to write. The appropriate card is simply selected from the range instore and processed along with other purchases made. A great advantage of this system is that small local charities, including foodbanks can also be represented. Unlike store gift cards, there is no possibility of unredeemed values; Ground Up CIC will transfer balances to participating charities on a daily basis.
All transactions in store will resolve to the Ground Up CIC ‘ETHOS’ payment system, with a SKU identifying the destination organisation of the gift. The priority is to make gift giving easy and for charities to receive the donation in full. (Whilst we will have operating costs, we will seek to donate 100% of the gift to the designated charity, relying on our receiving a voluntary commission from the charities themselves, from their own operating costs budgets.) We are ourselves a not for profit business; should commissions exceed our operating costs in any year, residual income would be returned to participating charities.
Our initial project is to pitch to major retailers a pilot project in a small number of stores, with the intention of rolling out a tested system at a later stage. The objective is of course for the scheme to be available in all major supermarkets and a significant number of other large retail chains as soon as practically possible. Right now, we need to raise sufficient seed capital to produce a fully worked up proposal to present to major retailers to move the scheme forward. We believe that we can through this venture, save all participating charities time, resources, and money which they would otherwise need to commit to internal fundraising.