Just one in five charities fully comply with rules on fundraising reporting

14 Sep 2020 News

Just one in five charities (21%) include all the required information about fundraising in their annual reports, research from the Fundraising Regulator has found.

The law requires charities with more than £1m income to include a statement on fundraising in their annual report, giving details on six aspects of their approach to fundraising.

The regulator analysed 187 annual reports from levy-paying charities. The sample represents 10% of all organisations paying the Fundraising Regulator’s levy and covers a range of charities of different sizes.

It found that while 81% of charities did include a fundraising statement in their annual reports, only 21% provided all the required information.

The Fundraising Regulator has now updated its guidance on fundraising reporting requirements.

Little improvement on last year

According to the Charities Act 2016, fundraising statements should include details on what regulatory scheme the charity is bound to, how it monitors third parties fundraising on its behalf, how many complaints it receives and how it protects vulnerable people.

While most charities reported on regulatory schemes (67%) and fundraising complaints (59%), only two in five gave details on third-party monitoring (41%) and protecting vulnerable people (40%).

This is the second year that charities have had to include a fundraising statement in their annual reports.

In January 2020, the regulator published a similar review, looking at levels of compliance with fundraising reporting requirements in the first year, and found that 60% of annual reports contained either a statement on fundraising with too little information or no statement at all.

The Fundraising Regulator said that while the two pieces of research were conducted with different methodologies and cannot be fully compared, “overall there is little improvement on year one”.

‘Positive to see most charities reporting on their fundraising approach’

Gerald Oppenheim, chief executive of the Fundraising Regulator, said: “Although there is still work to do to achieve compliance with the reporting requirements, it’s positive to see most charities reporting on their fundraising approach, thereby demonstrating their commitment to transparency. 

“As we approach year three of these reporting requirements, I urge charities and trustees to read our guidance, not only because the law requires these areas to be reported on, but most importantly because this gives supporters more information about charities’ fundraising activities. 

“We remain committed to working with the sector to achieve comprehensive, detailed reports and our updated guidance is designed to help facilitate this.”

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