KEEPING YOURSELF AND YOUR DONATIONS SAFE

Charities need our help more than ever, so once you’ve decided who to support, you’ll want to know that every penny of your donation reaches them. There are many ways to give to charity, which is great for speed and convenience, but that also means you need to take care to ensure your gift is in safe hands.

It’s important to stress that most charities operate within the law, raising vital funds and working to make a positive change to worthwhile causes around the world. But, sadly, there will always be some who try to take advantage of donors’ generosity.

WHAT IS CHARITY FRAUD?

Humanitarian disasters and popular fundraising events, for example, can bring imposters out of the woodwork. As donors look for a way to help those affected, it’s possible for them to fall victim to fake fundraising websites that appear sometimes just hours after news of an event has broken.

HOW CAN YOU MAKE SURE THAT YOUR DONATION GETS TO THE RIGHT PLACE?

So, what should you be aware of when making donations, and how can you be sure your money reaches the intended charity?

The first step is to read our article on how to spot a charitable organisation. This will help you understand what a charity is, and how you can stay safe by only donating to legitimate charities.

Make a donation online

Donating while you’re out and about

If you’re unsure about giving to a street fundraiser, there are some easy ways to ensure you’re giving to a real charity:

  • Ask them for their charity’s registration number, their fundraiser ID and for more information about what they’re collecting for. An authentic collector will be happy to explain the charity’s work in detail.
  • Check whether the collection box is sealed and if it bears the charity’s name. It’s not legal to collect in ordinary buckets and other open containers.
  • If you donate via cheque, make sure that it’s made payable to the charity itself.

Donating online

Think of making an online donation like any other internet transaction and take the same care and precautions.

  • Never respond to requests asking for cash to be sent through a money transfer company. This is a common scam; legitimate charities never fundraise this way.
  • Watch out for unsolicited emails from charities you’ve never had any contact with or have never heard of. It’s best not to open them, but if you do, don’t click on any of the links.

If you think you’ve been the victim of fraud, contact Action Fraud by phone on 0300 123 2040 or via their website.

DONATE CONFIDENTLY THROUGH CAF

Whether you’re an individual donor, or a company looking to support a charity, we can help ensure that your donation is tax-efficient and reaches your chosen charity every time.

We check every charity we pass donations to, both in the UK and overseas. The process is especially valuable if you want to give to charitable organisations in countries that don’t have a charity regulator, or where laws on financial crime and money laundering are weak.

Our validation checks also protect charities. We verify all of our donors and donations in line with our anti-money laundering (AML) processes.

FIND A CHARITY

Our charity search can help you find a charity close to your heart, and when you donate through us, you can be sure your gift will go directly to your chosen cause.

OTHER WAYS TO GIVE TO CHARITY

Donate now


Use our charity search to donate to a particular charity right away,

CAF Charity Account


Set aside a little when you have it to make a difference when you want to.

Donate worldwide


We can help you give to charitable causes around the world.