Options Paper for Fundraising Self-Regulation in Northern Ireland
In Northern Ireland the old bodies involved in fundraising self-regulation have now closed and there isn’t yet an agreed system in place to regulate fundraising practice. Having an agreed system for self-regulation will offer members of the public the opportunity to make their complaints heard if the charity response has been deemed unsatisfactory. Other parts of the UK have established their model:
- The Fundraising Regulator (covers England and Wales)
- Scottish Fundraising Complaints (covers Scotland)
Following an initial consultation event on 9 September 2016, NICVA was tasked by the NI VCSE sector with running a full consultation on the future of voluntary fundraising regulation in NI. As a starting point for a full consultation, NICVA established a NI Fundraising Regulation Working Group. This group has developed options for Northern Ireland and is seeking to consult with the sector in order to make recommendations. At its first meeting in November 2016 the Working Group took the decision to accept an offer from the Fundraising Regulator to act as the interim Fundraising Regulator for NI whilst a more detailed consultation on the way forward was carried out.
The working group fully endorses self-regulation of fundraising practice and recommends that this be more actively supported and enhanced in Northern Ireland. Self-regulation is the organisation taking responsibility for their own practice and pro-actively adhering to best practice, this is ultimately the responsibility of the board. Like many other governance matters, board members may need help in understanding what regulations and good practice that they should be adhering to. Helping the sector to improve their fundraising practice by giving them the practical tools to do this would greatly improve fundraising practice, and this is our first priority. In addition to the Code of Fundraising Practice, there are advice notes and guidance available on the DIY committee guide website as well as from NICVA and IOF.