Institute website plans international spin-offs

Charity Facts, the UK website that offers the public advice on what to expect from charities they donate to, is expanding into the US and Australia.

The Association of Fundraising Professionals in the US and the Fundraising Institute of Australia are working with the Institute of Fundraising, which runs the site, to develop sister versions.

The new sites will inform donors on topics such as how to judge a charity's performance, staff and fundraising costs, and how to make a complaint.

Lindsay Boswell, chief executive of the Institute of Fundraising, said the sites could become the public face of the ImpACT coalition, which aims to improve public understanding of how charities work.

"Charity Facts is an example of UK creativity and innovation in fundraising," he said. "The ImpACT agenda is another, and it may spread to other countries through the new sites."

Andrew Watt, vice-president of international development at the Association of Fundraising Professionals, said the international partnership would help the three organisations tackle shared problems.

"The issues we face in all three countries are broadly similar," he said. "There is a spotlight on fundraising and a need for transparency, so it makes sense for us to offer a web-based response."

Watt said the US version of the site, which will cost $50,000 to develop, would initially serve the donating public in Canada and the US, but would eventually include information about charities in Latin America.

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