Cashless Giving with the Fundraising Regulator - summary and recording

5 Jan 2022 Sandra Bailie    Last updated: 21 Jun 2023

As part of the #DigitalFundraising Webinar Series, Paul Winyard, Chartered Institute of Fundraising and Joanne McDowell, Fundraising Regulator, discussed key factors, best practice, and legislation to bear in mind for digital fundraising.
PDF icon fr_cashless_giving_slides.pdf373.24 KB

The session delivered by the Fundraising Regulator covered fundraising regulation, standards relating to digital fundraising, tips on risk assessment and recent learning related to online and cashless giving. 

The Code of Fundraising Practice

This code sets the standards that apply in UK fundraising. Section 10 on digital fundraising methods outlines the key considerations and intersects with Part 1 all fundraising and Part 2 working with others. The four values that underpin all the standards are: Open, honest, legal and respectful.

Emerging fundraising trends 

Some of the common enquiry themes include commercial partnerships, lotteries, volunteer fundraising and online fundraising platforms. 252% increase in complaints reported by charities about online methods (Apr 20 to Mar 21) though overall complaints down 4% on previous year according to the Annual Complaints Report 2020/21.

Assessing risk

Trustees have ultimate responsibility for charity fundraising activities, though may delegate day-to-day operations to staff. The charity's board of trustees/committee must take reasonable steps to assess and manage fundraising risks and the starting point should be risk assessment e.g., financial processes, vulnerable circumstances, health and safety, reputational, Covid-19. You should also consider risks associated with emergency or crisis appeals, especially with regards to fraud.

Tips for monitoring risk

The risks will be specific to type of activity, location etc. You need to ensure you think about all people that may be affected e.g., staff, volunteers, public, beneficiaries etc. It is unlikely risks will be eliminated entirely, consider the actions you can take to minimise serious effects. Also, consider how you are going to translate policies into action through training, monitoring compliance and revising through learning. 

Some tips on presenting information online

  • Main theme of complaints about digital to regulator is misleading information – also a cross-cutting theme across other methods
  • Be clear why donations are needed and what funds will be spent on
  • Consider the content and presentation of information carefully
  • Inform donors what will happen if you exceed or do not reach goal
  • Be prepared to back up any claims with evidence where necessary
  • Provide volunteers with appropriate training and support

Webinar Recording




Additional resources

Home Page - Prevent Charity Fraud

Online giving | Fundraising Regulator

Webinars | Fundraising Regulator

Annual Complaints Report | Fundraising Regulator's picture
by Sandra Bailie

Head of Organisational Development

[email protected]

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