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New advice issued to help public determine if charity collections are genuine

New advice issued to help public determine if charity collections are genuine

The and Local Government Association (LGA)  have issued advice for the public on how to determine whether doorstep charity clothing collections are genuine.

The advice, published on the Fundraising Regulator’s site, includes checking that the charity’s name and registration number is on the collection bag and looking it up on the register of charities, ensuring that a named charity is on the bag rather than just a cause, and that the bag also says how much the charity will make from the collection. Other warning signs include mistakes with spelling or grammar, unmarked collection vans, and collectors having no photo ID.

If people are concerned that a bag collection is not genuine, the guidance lists a number of steps they can take, including checking with the charity, contacting their local authority’s licensing team at to check whether the collector has a licence to operate in the area, and contacting Action Fraud.

Stephen Service, the Fundraising Regulator’s policy manager, said:

“The public need to feel confident they’re giving to legitimate collectors. This advice will help them to be certain they’re donating to a good cause.”

Cllr Simon Blackburn, Chair of the Local Government Association’s Safer and Stronger Communities Board, added:

“It’s unacceptable that some unscrupulous individuals try to take advantage of people’s desire to support good causes by collecting donations without passing the agreed proceeds to charity.

“Councils are doing all they can to ensure that doorstep collections of clothes and other goods are only undertaken by those who have been vetted and licensed. However, anyone who suspects a fraudulent or unlicensed collection should make their council aware of this so it can be followed up.”


Melanie May is a journalist and copywriter specialising in writing both for and about the charity and marketing services sectors since 2001. She can be reached via

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