UK Street Fundraiser Closes its Doors
Wednesday, 22nd February 2012 at 2:43 pm
One of the longest standing street fundraising companies in the UK, Gift Fundraising, has gone into voluntary administration with some 300 staff reportedly being made redundant.
The company announced that joint administrators were appointed on February 17th.
In a statement the Directors, Dominic Will and Neil Hope, said they were disappointed with the situation and the need to take this course of action.
Gift Fundraising says it has raised more than £100m for UK charities, both large and small, over the past 10 years.
The Directors’ statement thanked the staff, clients and stakeholders who have played a part in the positive impact the company has made on the sector since its inception in 2001.
UK media is reporting that Gift Fundraising faced problems caused by "unexpectedly poor performance over the winter".
In the UK, fundraisers are legally obligated to point out to potential donors that they are paid when they speak to them.
In August 2011, new rules came into effect regarding UK street fundraisers working for Public Fundraising Regulatory Association (PFRA) member organisations.
Under the new rules, street fundraisers must:
- not stand within three metres of a cashpoint
- ensure that any extra information (over and above the ‘notifiable amount’) given as part of the solicitation statement conforms to the same standards of accuracy required for calculating the notifiable amount
- not imply that a donor can sign up ‘without commitment'
- not sign up anyone unable to give informed consent through illness, disability, or drink or drugs.
In Australia, the FIA has said previously that fundraising in shopping malls and city streets known as face-to-face fundraising is an extremely successful method of raising funds, bringing significant benefits to charitable work in Australia and abroad.
Yet the charities that use face to face fundraising recognise its public perception is problematic.
Professional fundraisers in Australia operate under a code of practice.
Across Australia an estimated 200,000 charity givers are recruited every year with an annual value of $50m. The average ‘life’ of these recruited donors is five years.
Charity expert and lawyer, Derek Mortimer, who worked with the FIA on its code of practice says professional face-to-face or street fundraisers are part of the Australian landscape.