Fundraising Law and Good Practice
When it comes to fundraising in Ireland there are not many laws which directly relate to the activity but many laws which indirectly affect what should and should not be done.
When is comes to law, and advice on what is legal or illegal in relation to voluntary and community activity then The Wheel can offer guidance on fundraising good practice.
The new Charity Bill is due to be passed into law in Ireland in 2008. This will present new challenges and opportunities to charity fundraising as it proposes three ways of dealing with fundraising:
- Some of the current laws are updated and collections of cash and non-cash are included in the bill.
- In the first instance fundraising will be regulated through a system of voluntary codes of practice (see below for more detials).
- If, during the review of the voluntary codes of practice system, fundraising activity does not confirm to Government’s expectations, then the Minister reserves the right to legislate directly to influence how fundraising is carried out.
Regulation of Fundraising Through Codes of Practice
In response to the publication of the Charity Bill in 2007 in which it was proposed that fundraising activity be regulated through codes of practice, the Irish Charities Tax Research Group (ICTR) led a programme of research and consultation (funded by the Department of Communikty, Rural and Gaeltacht Affairs) to devide the architecture by which such a system would operate. They also developed a suite of good practice principles which would inform the actual codes, once the point of developing codes has been reached. The current status of this work is that ICTR published its findings in May 2008. These have been provisionally accepted by Government. But as yet, it is unclear as to how the work will now proceed.
Any organisation interested in operating according ot best practice in fundraising should download the Principles of Good Fundraising Practice from the ICTR’s website: www.ictr.ie. Even though these principles are not yet part of a functioning system that can monitor them, they are an excellent way of ensuring that your organisation does its business according to good practice.Relevant Contacts
- The Wheel: www.wheel.ie
- Fundraising Ireland: www.fundraisingireland.ie
- Irish Charities Tax Research Group: www.ictr.ie
Relevant legislation in relations to Fundraising
- House to House Collections / Street Collections
- Data Protection
- Lotteries, Raffles and Ballots
- (Draft but not enacted yet) Charity Bill 2007