Fundraising Promise FAQ

Q:  What is the Institute of Fundraising?  IoF-logo

The The Institute of Fundraising is the membership body for all professional fundraisers in the UK.  It seeks to ensure all members work to the highest standards through the Code of Fundraising Practice.  It also provides training in all aspects of fundraising, leading to a range of fundraising qualifications.  All the fundraisers at Chest Heart & Stroke Scotland are members of the Institute of Fundraising.



Q:   What is the IoF Code of Fundraising Practice?

A:  The Code of Fundraising Practice outlines the standards to which all members of the Institute must adhere.  It was revised in 2015 and is under further review by the Fundraising Regulator who is now responsible for its development.


Fundraising Regulator LogoQ:  What is the Fundraising Regulator ? 

A:  The Fundraising Regulator is the supervisory body for fundraising in England, Wales and Scotland and was set up in 2016.    It has responsibility for the Fundraising Codes of Practice and the Fundraising Preference Service.  Launched in July 2017, the FPS does not apply in Scotland.  If you would prefer not to hear from us, please contact our Donor Care team on 0131 225 4800 (Monday to Friday 9am – 4.30pm) or email us at


Q:  Who regulates fundraising in Scotland?

A:  In Scotland, fundraising is regulated by OSCR, the Office of the Scottish Charity Regulator.  CHSS has been registered with OSCR since it was set up: our charity number is SC018761.  However, OSCR has delegated responsibility for overseeing fundraising standards to the Scottish Fundraising Standards Panel.


Q:  What is the Scottish Fundraising Standards Panel? 

A:  The Scottish Fundraising Standards Panel promotes fundraising standards and deals with fundraising complaints relating to Scottish registered charities.  It also feeds into any changes made to the Fundraising Codes of Practice by the Fundraising Regulator to ensure these remain relevant in Scotland, where law and regulation is different.


Q: What is Face to Face fundraising?

A:  Face to Face fundraising is where charities seek to recruit new donors to support their work either in the street, by knocking on their door (known as “door to door”), or in a privately owned space, such as a railway station, supermarket or shopping centre.  There is strict regulation in place with Rulebooks  setting out the standards for these recruitment methods.


Q:  Does CHSS carry out Face to Face fundraising?

A:  We have not done so in the past, but we desperately need more support, so we are planning to recruit more donors.  A decision has not yet been made on the method, but it is unlikely to be in the street, as we know that the public find this off-putting.


Q:   What is Cold Calling?

A:   Cold Calling is a process used by some charities to recruit new supporters – individuals the charity has had no previous contact with, but who they hope may support their work.  This is usually done through employing a telephone fundraising agency, rather than by the charity’s own staff.


Q:   Does Chest Heart & Stroke Scotland cold call people?

A:   No, Chest Heart & Stroke Scotland does not recruit donors through Cold Calling.


Q:   Do you sell or pass data to other charities or telephone fundraising agencies to use in this way?

A:   No.  We never sell or pass our donors’ details to other charities or telephone fundraising agencies to use in this way.


Q:   Do you use a telephone fundraising agency?

A:   Yes, but only to contact individuals who already support us.  These people are sometimes known as “warm” donors.  We use a local telephone fundraising agency for a limited time each year to ask our current regular givers (who give via Direct Debit) if they might consider increasing their donation.  We never attempt to call those supporters who have told us they prefer not to be contacted by telephone or who are signed up to the Telephone Preference Service (TPS) *. Our supporters’ wishes are paramount.


* Fundraising CODE OF PRACTICE: 8.2.2

The following categories of potential telephone recipients MUST* be excluded:

all those who have registered with the Telephone Preference Service, unless they have notified the fundraising organisation they will consent to receiving calls from them (see 8.2.3); any individual who, on a previous occasion, has registered an objection to the use of the telephone for soliciting gifts or support for that particular fundraising organisation; and any person who has written to the fundraising organisation to ask it not to use their contact details for marketing purposes or has otherwise asked not to be called.




Q:   How do you make sure the agency behaves respectfully?

A:   We only work with a well respected local agency that we know well, and which belongs to the Institute of Fundraising and therefore has to abide by the Institute’s Code of Fundraising Practice.

When we start a telephone campaign with the agency, a senior member of staff from Chest Heart & Stroke Scotland meets, trains and gets to know the telephone fundraisers well.  We show the fundraisers a film of our work, so they understand how important it is to the people we help that our work is supported by donations.  A core value at Chest Heart & Stroke Scotland is to “put the donor at the heart of all we do” which means treating all supporters on their terms and thinking about what behaviours are (and are not) appropriate*.


*Fundraisers CODE OF PRACTICE: 1.2

Fundraisers MUST take all reasonable steps to treat a donor fairly, enabling them to make an informed decision about any donation. This MUST include taking into account the needs of any potential donor who may be in a vulnerable circumstance or require additional care and support to make an informed decision.”



Q:   Do you monitor how the agency behaves?

A:   Yes, we do.  The senior staff member sits in at the start of the campaign to hear what is being said and feeds back to the call centre’s manager if this is not appropriate or has any concerns.  All calls are recorded and we listen in on a regular basis to monitor the process.


*Fundraising CODE OF PRACTICE: 1.2

Fundraisers MUST NOT exploit the credulity, lack of knowledge, apparent need for care and support or vulnerable circumstance of any donor at any point in time.”



Q:   If someone being called isn’t happy, how do you respond?

A:   The communication between the agency and Chest Heart & Stroke Scotland is fluid and we aim to resolve any complaints as soon as possible.  All calls are recorded, so we can easily hear a specific call from which a complaint has arisen about the tone or content of the call*.

If the supporter asks not to be called again, we will act on that immediately*.


* Fundraising CODE OF PRACTICE: 1.3

Fundraisers MUST NOT pressurise donors or potential donors, but may use reasonable persuasion”


If the supporter asks not to be called again, we will act on that immediately**.


**Fundraising CODE OF PRACTICE: 8.3.1

If the recipient asks not to be called again, the fundraising organisation MUST comply with the request.”
And complaints policy is available on our website.  We value our donors and do not want to upset them!



Q:   I don’t want to be contacted by telephone at all – what should I do?

A: If you are a current supporter of Chest Heart & Stroke Scotland and would prefer not to be contacted by telephone, simply call us on 0131 225 4800 or email us at and we will ensure you are not contacted in this way in future.

If you are receiving unwanted cold calls* or cold direct mail from other charities, our advice is to get in touch with the charity direct and tell them.


**Fundraising CODE OF PRACTICE: 8.3.1

If the donor asks not to be called again, the fundraising organisation MUST comply with the request.”
We would also advise the following:

  • Keep an eye out for tick boxes on donation forms from ourselves or other charities to ‘opt out’ of unwanted contact.  However, from May 2018, charities will only be able to contact you if you have ‘opted in’, so unwanted calls should be far fewer.
  • Beware of lifestyle surveys and catalogues, and ensure you specify if you do want to be contacted by 3rd parties.
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