The Privy Council has granted permission for the Institute of Fundraising to apply formally for chartered status.
In 2015, the IoF submitted an informal memorandum, the first part of its bid to become a chartered institute, but the process was halted by the Privy Council in the wake of the fundraising scandals.
In a statement made today, the IoF said it hoped the Privy Council would be able to make a decision by the end of the year, although Peter Lewis, the IoF’s chief executive, said it could take longer.
It has also launched a consultation of members on the changes to the IoF’s constitution that would be necessary to meet the requirements of chartered status. The consultation will run until June.
The IoF hopes to ratify the changes at its AGM in July and will then make a formal petition to the Privy Council, which will consult with various government departments before making a decision.
Lewis told Third Sector that having chartered status would provide "external public recognition of fundraising as a reputable profession".
He added that once the institute itself gained chartered status, "hopefully in due course we will be able to award chartered status to individual members who have the right level of skills and experience and show commitment to a high level of fundraising standards".
He said: "This is a really big thing for the institute at 35 years old. This has been talked about since I came to the IoF more than seven years ago, so being able to move on to the next stage now is very exciting, for the institute and our members."
Alex Xavier, director of individual membership, compliance and professional development at the IoF, said: "Should we be granted chartered status as an institute, it will give much-deserved recognition and credibility to everyone in the profession."
He said that if the IoF was then able to award chartered status to individuals, it would be the "pinnacle in professional recognition of knowledge, skills and ethical standards in fundraising".