The planned rollout of a program to let Brits do good at the ATM by donating to charities is doing — not so good.

Late this spring, the U.K.'s Link network launched a program to enable bank customers to tack on a charitable donation to their transaction at the ATM. But according to an article by Civil Society, implementation efforts have met with some hangups.

Depending on the source, the initial rollout goal of 12,000 machines has been achieved (says Link), or not (more like 8,000 to 9,000, say others). But that's still well short of the 65,000 Link-connected ATMs that supporters were hoping to bring into the program.

The problem, said Graham Mott, head of development and external relations at Link Scheme, is that the effort has not been coordinated properly between the banks and the ATM deployers. For instance, Lloyd's bankcards aren't enabled for the program, so cardholders can't give even if they want to.

And cardholders who can donate must choose among 30 approved charities. The list was finalized just last month and, already, cardholders have complained that their favorite charity isn't on it.

That's not to say that the program is a bust, though, said Ron Delnevo, managing director of the IAD Bank Machine. "There is huge potential for this channel to make this work for charity, but it's going to take a huge effort," he said.

For more on this topic, visit the multi-function ATM research center. 

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