Fundraisers to have a say in self-regulation scheme

The Fundraising Standards Board has moved to stave off criticism of its governance procedures by revealing it plans to take advice from specialist groups made up of fundraising professionals and members of the public.

Colin Lloyd, chair of the board, said advisory groups would help the self-regulatory scheme achieve "a fair balance between donors and charities" in the complaints adjudication process.

The board has been criticised recently for including rules in its governing document that prevent fundraisers from being on the board or voting at general meetings.

Jon Scourse, chief executive of the board, said: "As we develop, there will be issues we would welcome sharing with our membership, and we may ask for assistance if they warrant an advisory group. We have no problem with using our membership to seek opinion and advice."

The board launched to the public in February. It currently has 333 organisational members and the top 20 fundraising charities have all committed themselves to joining it. Lloyd estimated that these organisations generate at least 25 per cent of voluntary income in the UK.

Separately, the board has launched a project to recruit small charities based in Fife, eastern Scotland.

The scheme, the result of a partnership also involving CVS Fife and fellow umbrella body Voluntary Organisations North East Fife, will experiment with different recruitment methods. Those that succeed will be extended across the UK.

Kate Higgins, manager of the board in Scotland, said: "Our aim is to encourage more people in Scotland to give more money.

"It is just as important for small local charities to give reassurance to people as it is for big national charities to do so."

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