By Paul Winyard, Policy Manager at the Fundraising Regulator
The Code of Fundraising Practice (the code) aims to promote a culture of honesty, openness and respect between fundraisers and the public by providing best practice standards for charitable institutions and third-party fundraisers to follow.
This month, we are beginning a two-year process of reviewing and updating the code with the launch of a public call for information, which closes in November 2022.
Why are we reviewing the code?
We know that the fundraising landscape has changed a lot since we last reviewed the code in 2018/19. Traditional fundraising methods – such as street collections and community events – of course remain popular, but activity is increasingly taking place online.
From talking to charities and through our Annual Complaints Report, we can also see that certain activities such as lotteries and ‘in aid of’ volunteer fundraising are becoming more commonplace. There are also legislative developments that a refreshed code will need to consider.
What do we want to know?
It’s important that the code review is based on evidence and takes account of the views of those who have an interest in the outcome. We want to hear how the code can be improved so that it sets a proportionate, future-proof framework that protects donors and the public. At the same time, we want to avoid unnecessary constraints on fundraisers.
Whether you are a donor, legal expert, or fundraising professional, or represent a charity, online platform, agency, regulator, or representative body – we want to hear your views. We're particularly keen to hear from those that can sometimes struggle to have their voices heard, such as smaller fundraising charities.
Guidelines for responding - including some helpful questions to consider when providing feedback - can be found on the public call for information webpage. The call for information runs for eight weeks, closing on Friday 25 November 2022.
What will we do with this information?
My team will develop proposals for updating the code that take account of the feedback gathered through the ‘call for information’ and wider information gathering process. This will include feedback from other regulators and voluntary sector partners, and research into the public’s experience and expectations of charitable fundraising.
Once we have developed proposals for updating the code, we will conduct a 12-week public consultation on any potential changes in autumn 2023.
Stay updated throughout the code review process
We will be providing regular updates throughout the code review process including more blogs from me. You can find out more about the timeline for the review of the code 2022-24 on the ‘get involved’ pages of our website.
Follow us on Twitter @FundrRegulator or sign up to our monthly newsletter to keep updated. If you have any questions about the code review process, you can email email@example.com.