The charity sector has attracted a certain amount of negative publicity over recent years regarding its fundraising practices. Particular scandals include the sale of donor details and the Olive Cooke tragedy. Perhaps as a response to this, new disclosure requirements concerning fundraising for charities subject to audit have been introduced for reporting periods beginning on or after 1 November 2016 (though early adoption is permitted).
These were introduced by the “Charities (Protection and Social Investment) Act 2016” and the detailed requirements can be found in section 7.9 of the Charity Reporting Document CC15d.
Disclosure requirements concerning fundraising for charities
“7.9 Information on fundraising practices that auditable charities must disclose
All auditable charities that raise funds from the public must provide the following information in their trustees’ annual report for financial years beginning on or after 1 November 2016:
- The fundraising approach taken by the charity, or by anyone acting on its behalf, and whether a professional fundraiser or commercial participator carried out any fundraising activities.
- Details of any fundraising standards or scheme for fundraising regulation that the charity has voluntarily subscribed to.
- Details of any fundraising standards or scheme for fundraising regulation that any person acting on behalf of the charity has voluntarily subscribed to.
- Details of any failure by the charity, or by any person acting on its behalf, to comply with fundraising standards or scheme for fundraising regulation that the charity or the person acting on its behalf has voluntarily subscribed to.
- Whether the charity monitored the fundraising activities of any person acting on its behalf and, if so, how it did so.
- The number of complaints received by the charity, or by a person acting on its behalf for the purposes of fundraising, about fundraising activity.
- What the charity has done to protect vulnerable people and other members of the public from behaviour which:
- is an unreasonable intrusion on a person’s privacy
- is unreasonably persistent
- places undue pressure on a person to give money or other property
If you are involved in actively raising funds from the public you should ensure this information is included in the Trustees’ Report for and where necessary you have systems in place to be able to answer these questions.
This may be a good opportunity for Trustees and management to consider whether any changes are required to your charity’s fundraising practices so the abuses in previous years can be avoided and so you can confidently answer these questions. For instance, should your charity be registered with the Fundraising Regulator? Are there any methods of raising funds that you feel that should be stopped or changed?
For more information on how the new disclosure requirements may impact your charity fundraising initiatives, please contact Richard Snelling by calling 01784 497 126 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.