New Forest


The fundraising regulator’s inquiry into the use of subtracting

Last summer, the fundraising regulator launched its first market inquiry into the use of subcontracting in face-to-face fundraising. The inquiry was launched as a result of a pattern of complaints, self-reports and press interest into poor door-to-door fundraising practice by subcontracted agencies.

The regulator held five fact-finding workshops with senior representatives from charity fundraising teams, charity compliance teams and agencies. There were 78 participants across the workshops from 36 charities and 18 agencies. Workshop participants shared many examples of good practice and a widespread willingness to do the right thing.

In March, the Fundraising Regulator released the results of its market inquiry. Among the regulator’s recommendations to charities is closer monitoring of subcontracting firms and ensuring they receive adequate training. Furthermore, both charities and agencies must ensure that the payment model for fundraisers is suitable and does not encourage unethical practices.

The results inquiry emphasises the need for robust oversight of subcontracted relationships in fundraising. Both charities and agencies must ensure fundraising activities comply with contracts and fundraising standards. Charities bear ultimate responsibility for all fundraising conducted in their name, including third-party involvement.

The inquiry concludes that although face-to-face fundraising is valuable for charities, charities and agencies must review processes to address risks of poor practice.

Guidance: Fundraising Regulator market inquiry findings urge charities to review their subcontracted face-to-face fundraising relationships | Fundraising Regulator

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