Please click here to read OSCR’s COVID-19 Guidance for Charities

8. Safer giving and fundraising

Published: 30/03/2020
Updated: 22/12/2020

One of the ways of supporting people at this time of ongoing crisis is to give funds. At all times it is important to try to make sure that you are contributing to a legitimate organisation.  One of the ways of doing this is by giving to established charities.  You can check they are charities by looking at the Scottish Charity Register.


The Institute of Fundraising (IoF) have issued information for fundraisers on COVID-19, providing practical help on a range of different activities and planning for changes to these activities. The Fundraising Regulator also publishes guidance.

If you are concerned about the fundraising practices of any Scottish charity you should follow the 3-stage complaint process by contacting the charity first and asking them to resolve this.  Under the enhanced self-regulation system, charities have primary responsibility for dealing with fundraising complaints. It’s important for them to get your feedback, so they can understand any problems, address your specific concerns and improve their fundraising practice.

If you are unsatisfied with the charity’s response, then you should contact the Scottish Fundraising Standards Panel, providing details of your complaint and any supporting documents to allow the Panel to make an adjudication against the Code of Fundraising Practice. They will ask for any further information they require but this will delay the process. 

The Panel members are all voluntary and therefore resources during this time are limited but they aim to respond to all complaints within their usual timescales.

If the charity you are concerned about is registered in England, Wales or Northern Ireland, then you should contact the Fundraising Regulator.