SCVO media release
23 September

We need to do more to maintain public trust in fundraising

  • Trustees and senior managers of charities must take more ownership of fundraising activity
  • Need to do more to prevent vulnerable people being inundated with fundraising requests
  • Sub-contracted fundraising should be more closely controlled
  • Charities should ask people how they want to be treated by fundraisers and develop a fundraising guarantee for members of the public
  • More than half (59%) of respondents to a survey on charity fundraising in Scotland said their trust in fundraising had stayed the same in the last year, one third said it had decreased and the rest said it had increased

The Scottish Council for Voluntary Organisations’ informal review of fundraising in Scotland has found that charities should take the lead in improving the self-regulation of fundraising.

Martin Sime, Chief Executive, SCVO said:

“Everything charities do hinges on public trust, so it’s absolutely critical that we sit up and listen to what people are telling us. We can and must do better.

“Self-regulation is still the best way to oversee fundraising in Scotland but we need a much simpler approach. Charities and their trustees should take the lead in designing a new system of self-regulation.

“The review has given us a useful overview of the issues around fundraising. Now we want to see charities and other third sector organisations come together to find the answers to these challenges, and to set out a much more rigorous approach to self-regulation which everyone can trust.”


Notes to editors:

  1. The Scottish Council for Voluntary Organisations (SCVO) is the national membership body representing the interests of charities, voluntary organisations and social enterprises. The Scottish third sector turns over £4.9 billion a year and employs 138,000 people in over 45,000 organisations.
  2. The review was led by a reference group made up of third sector representatives and also included a survey on views about fundraising among members of the public, charities with an interest in the sector’s reputation, charities who fundraise and professional fundraisers. The Scottish Government asked SCVO to conduct the informal review to run alongside a review of fundraising being carried out in England and Wales.
  3. Read the full report and survey findings
  4. To arrange an interview or to request further comment, please call Charlotte McNeill at SCVO on 07790 601 995