Getting Started in Fundraising
There are many different ways that you can raise money for your chosen cause. Such causes do not have to be registered charities in order for you to fundraise for them. For example, you may wish to raise money for an individual in need, and you would not be able to register that as a charity, as it is for a private cause, rather than having a public benefit. However, no matter how you fundraise, you need to make sure you are open and honest about what it is you are raising money for.
Choosing a Cause
If you don't know who to fundraise for, you could start by searching for existing charities online. With over 190,000 registered charities in the UK plus numerous non-registered fundraising organisations you are likely to find one working in an area you feel passionate about. The following sites may help you.
- Search the Charity Commission register of all registered charities in England and Wales.
- Search the Office of the Scottish Charity regulator register of Scottish charities.
- Search for organisations using Guidestar.
Guidestar is a directory of fundraising organisations that uses information supplied by the Charity Commission. Fundraising organisations can also upload more information about their work.
Letting Them Know
It is important to contact the organisation that you are fundraising for. They may be able to provide you with advice and materials that could help you.
Going it Alone
If you cannot find an organisation that already supports your chosen cause, you could establish a new fundraising organisation. There are many different options that you can consider in terms of the organisation's structure. To register as a charity you will need to be able to demonstrate public benefit and meet certain charitable tests.
Read the briefing about setting up a charity in Scotland.
- Find out more about becoming a charity in England and Wales.
- Find out more about becoming a charity in Scotland.
- Find out more about becoming a charity in Northern Ireland.
You do not have to register as a charity in order to fundraise, however. The Institute has prepared a briefing which outlines some of the structures you might wish to consider for your fundraising.
Be sure to check the other information about fundraising pages on this website.
Code of Fundraising Practice and Guidance
Openness and honesty are central to effective fundraising and helping to build public trust and confidence. The Accountability and Transparency guidance is a vital resource, providing best practice and legal information, to help you ensure that you are not misleading your donors.
The Code of Fundraising Practice highlight the law and best practice for a range of fundraising techniques. The Handling of Cash Donations section of the Code and guidance may be particularly relevant, providing guidance on how best to collect and process the donations you collect.
- Read the Handling of Cash Donations section of the Code.
- Read the Handling of Cash Donations guidance.
- Find out more about the Code of Fundraising Practice.
Other Institute Resources
A number of Institute briefings will also help you with getting started in fundraising.