Charity Fundraising Regulation Third Sector Briefing

Key contact:       Holly Bryon-Staples, Development Officer, PKAVS Third Sector Hub

                              01738 452210


Delivering the consultation:       Richard Hammer, Animate Consulting

                                                       Fraser Hudghton, Institute of Fundraising


FH gave some background to the consultation, detailing that charity fundraising practices have been scrutinised across the UK recently and that there has been a change in how it is regulated in England and Wales. The consultation aims to explain some of the options that are being considered in Scotland and to gather feedback from stakeholders.

Amongst those in attendance that represented third sector organisations, it was discussed that the option that involved self-regulation and OSCR taking a more proactive role makes most sense for several reasons. Firstly the fact that it is a Scotland specific approach was identified as appropriate, and that OSCR would be a known body to existing charities would make it simpler. It was also discussed that this option would be universal to charities and therefore fairer.

There was a recognition that there would be some challenges in terms of communicating the changes to Trustees, particularly given that there is potential for confusion if Scotland uses a different method and timeline to England and Wales.

 One attendee expressed that they felt disconnected to the changes because active fundraising is only a small part of how they raise income. RH clarified that, although it is not specifically identified, raising money through grant funding etc would in theory, be included in the new regulation, but that generally it carries much less risk and so is less of a prominent issue.

 It was discussed that charity fundraising regulation was about ensuring best practice and that OSCR are currently tasked with ensuring best practice across other aspects of charities’ practice, making it seem sensible that fundraising was included in this.

 A question about whether there should be some kind of weighting depending on the size of the charity. It was assumed that a significant proportion of the larger charities working in Scotland would be London based and therefore having to respond to the new regulations already in place there. They are therefore keen for the same regulation to apply in Scotland.  It was recognised that larger charities have a greater capacity for change.

 FH explained that the engagement process would conclude late June, and that the collated information would be considered by the SCVO board and the Scottish Government before a decision is made.

 If you have any questions or would like to comment on any of the information, please get in touch with Holly, as above.