As the COVID-19 lockdown restrictions continue to ease across the UK, charities and their partners are beginning to think about returning to fundraising activities that have either been paused or stopped during the pandemic.
With many fundraising activities expected to resume in the coming weeks and months it is important that they are carried out safely, sensitively and responsibly.
To help charities and community groups return to more ‘normal’ fundraising practices, the Fundraising Regulator has issued a series of resources providing best practice guidelines for fundraising in public and at events as well as how to handle cash collections.
We have outlined the key points from the guidance below. To see the full guidance visit: https://www.fundraisingregulator.org.uk/more-from-us/resources
Charity fundraising after lockdown – key principles
When starting up fundraising activities, charities are urged to consider:
- How to plan their future fundraising
- How to behave and interact safely and respectfully with the public while fundraising
- How to safeguard the public, staff and volunteers
- Carrying out a risk assessment
Charities, community groups and voluntary organisations should consider the nature of their fundraising activity, the location and what preparation is required to ensure all activity is carried out safely and in line with the current Government guidance in their area:
- Stay up-to-date and follow the Government guidance from the relevant nation (England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland. Lockdown restrictions and guidance on social distancing is likely to change over time so it’s important stay informed and apply any new requirements and limitations to your fundraising activities.
- Carry out risk assessments. It is important that charities and all other fundraising organisations carefully consider the risks associated with each type of fundraising activity they carry out. Risk assessments should be properly documented and reviewed regularly, as appropriate.
- Communicate effectively with third parties. If you work with third parties it is important to communicate clearly your expectations regarding the approach that should be taken as lockdown measures are eased.
- Be transparent with the public and others. This includes making information available and explaining your approach to fundraising safely and responsibly as restrictions lift.
Safeguarding members of the public and fundraisers
You must put sufficient measures in place to protect the public as well your staff, fundraisers and volunteers. Depending on your method of fundraising, this could include:
- Ensuring social distancing measures are put in place and adhered to
- The use of Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) and face coverings
- Making sure hand-washing facilities or hand sanitiser is made available
- Having procedures in place for staff, volunteers and fundraisers to self-isolate for 10 days is they display COVID-19 symptoms, receive a positive test or have been in contact with someone who has tested positive
For further public fundraising guidance, visit: https://www.fundraisingregulator.org.uk/more-from-us/resources/coronavirus-covid-19-public-fundraising-guidance
Guidance for running community fundraising events
It is vital that any planned fundraising event or community activity only takes place in a manner that is consistent with the national restrictions and guidance.
There are a number of points fundraising organisations should consider as they work across the various stages of lockdown easing. These include:
- Carrying out a risk assessment
- Consulting fundraising teams and third parties to ensure they have the right training, equipment, and time to prepare
- Considering the public mood and the likely appetite and reception from your supporters/participants/attendees for this type of activity
- Discussing your plans with the event venue/site to make sure that it is appropriate for the activity planned and that all necessary preparatory health and safety steps can be taken
- Planning your event with flexibility in mind e.g. putting contingency measures in place if you need to cancel, postpone, or adapt your event
- Having appropriate insurance cover for your event
For further events and community fundraising guidance, visit: https://www.fundraisingregulator.org.uk/more-from-us/resources/coronavirus-covid-19-events-and-community-fundraising-guidance
Cash collection guidance
This advice covers any form of fundraising that involves the collection and subsequent handling of cash donations e.g. via collecting buckets and boxes in public places and static collection boxes in places such as shops, pubs, hotels, hospital reception areas and so on.
To adhere to social distancing guidance and good hygiene practices, you should review how you collect, handle and process cash donations – which could include:
- Considering if and when alternative donation methods can be used to avoid or minimise the need to handle and process cash e.g. contactless card payments
- Ensuring good hygiene practices are followed after handling and counting cash donations – such as washing hands with soap and water for 20 or using an alcohol-based hand sanitiser
- Regularly cleaning and sanitising cash donation collecting boxes
For further cash collections guidance, visit: https://www.fundraisingregulator.org.uk/more-from-us/resources/coronavirus-covid-19-cash-collections-guidance
Read more of our COVID-19 guidance
We have a range of resources and risk assessment documents for charities, community groups and voluntary organisations to help them navigate the various issues posed by COVID-19:
- COVID-19 – Reopening risk assessments and guides for charities
- How to hold ‘COVID-safe’ charity meetings – checklist
We also have guides and resources to help with different aspects of fundraising:
About BHIB Charities Insurance
BHIB Charities Insurance specialise in providing tailored cover for community groups, clubs, societies, voluntary organisations and hobby or special interest groups. We offer more than just insurance and we are passionate about supporting local communities.