Funding and Fundraising
Obtaining the funding help you need to sustain the work of your organisation, and its impact, can be challenging, but there are many opportunities and approaches available to explore.
At GCVS, we can help you to develop a diverse fundraising strategy that builds your financial resilience, independence and future sustainability. From grant funding, to community fundraising and increasingly digital giving, we offer a variety of training, support and free resources.
Quick Guide Videos
Visit and subscribe to our YouTube Page where you can find fundraising quick guides to help with your fundraising.
One to One Support – Funding Surgeries
- Are you looking for advice about funding or fundraising for your group or organisation?
- Do you need specific advice or in-depth feedback?
Our funding surgeries give you the chance to discuss income generation with a focus on sustainability.
If you have attended our funding related training sessions and browsed our online resources but would still welcome some one-to-one guidance or targeted support, why not book an appointment with our Funding Officer, June Burgess?
Surgeries are held by Zoom video call, or by telephone, and usually last around 40 minutes. You will receive written information afterwards containing top tips, action points and links to further information. To book your funding appointment please email firstname.lastname@example.org
Find free training, frequently asked questions and more in the links below:
Training for Funding & Fundraising
We offer a range of free two-hour training sessions on various fundraising topics throughout the year. Our courses cover the key information you will need to develop a strategic fundraising plan and include good practical advice on how to implement various fundraising methods. Recent additions to our training programme include “Developing Your Fundraising Plan” and “Creating and Using Your Case for Support”
“Essential advice & tips on writing a compelling case for support & the watchpoints to avoid”
“Incredibly useful overview of current trends/governance issues/planning & targeted fundraising”
Search for Potential Funders
Searching for Potential Funders? Try this:
- Sign up for GCVS Newsletters where we highlight opportunities relevant for Glasgow
- Check out previous funding news
- Check out previous GCVS newsletters
- SCVO’s Funding Scotland website is a good place to search – it holds information on over 1,300 funding opportunities including grants, loans, prizes and other support. It is free to use. If you are a Member of SCVO, you may be eligible for free access to their Funding Scotland Premium service which offers even greater flexibility to save searches and receive regular updates.
Frequently Asked Questions
In this section we use the term “Group” to mean a constituted not for profit organisation – including registered charities, unincorporated associations, charitable trusts, SCIOs, Community Interest Companies, Benefit Societies etc.
Best Practice and Regulation
Q Is there any law about raising funds that we should know about?
A Yes – lots! The Code of Fundraising Practice is the standard for all fundraising activity being carried out across the UK. You should check the appropriate section of the Code before starting any fundraising activity. It’s here: www.fundraisingregulator.org.uk/code
Q We want to do a ‘bag-pack’ in our local supermarket. Do we need a licence?
A No, but you do ned the permission of the supermarket and you must make sure that any collecting boxes are sealed. Find out more
Q We want to collect from house to house around our local area in Glasgow. What do we need to do?
A You’ll need a licence from Glasgow City Council (Find out more) – the licence will say exactly which streets and dates you can collect on, and there are additional requirements, like making sure that your collectors have badges. Find out more from OSCR.
Q I am a trustee of a small charity. A friend has told me that I am legally responsible for ensuring that they charity has enough money to carry out its work. Is that true?
A Yes. In law, trustees are legally responsible – OSCR offer specific guidance for trustees – Find out more
Q Can we raise funds in our local school by getting the children to grow flowers?
A Great idea! Make sure that you keep the children safe, and the money safe by following the Code of Fundraising Practice’s guidance on fundraising involving children: Find out more
Q I don’t understand all of the terms and language used in fundraising. Where can I get help?
A The Code of Fundraising Practice has a useful glossary of terms here
Working with Businesses
Q A local business has offered to sponsor our family fun day. They are anxious about VAT implications. Help?
A As a charity, you do not pay VAT when you buy some goods and services. However, VAT may be charged when you give or receive sponsorship. The guidance is HERE
Using a Consultant or Freelance fundraiser to raise funds for our group
Q One of our trustees has suggested using a freelance fundraiser to raise funds for our group. What are the advantages and disadvantages?
A The Chartered Institute of Fundraising has some useful guidance about working with consultants and freelance fundraisers. They include some top tips to consider beforehand. https://ciof.org.uk/events-and-training/resources/working-with-consultants-and-freelancers
Q Our group wants to write to our members and supporters to ask for money. Can we do this?
Q Can we send our supporters “thank you” letters if they have given us a donation?
Q Can we send our volunteers Christmas cards?
A You must take great care to comply with the legal requirements for all forms of fundraising communications, including direct mail. You can find comprehensive, practical advice in the Code of Fundraising Practice. Please see Section 3: Processing personal data (information) and also section 9: Fundraising communications and advertisements
Q We want to run a raffle as part of an event. Do we need a licence?
A The Gambling Commission has published a really handy quick guide about the requirements for all types of raffles and lotteries. You can also find practical guidance in the Code of Fundraising Practice. If you need a license, apply to Glasgow City Council.
Q We’re running a fundraising event for the first time – is there anywhere we can find some guidance?
A Events take a lot of time, money and effort to organize, often with little profit. However, they can help you to raise awareness for your cause and reach new audiences. The Code of Fundraising practice has clear guidance on all types of events. See Section 11: events. You can also find good advice on events fundraising from the Chartered Institute of Fundraising
Q What is Gift Aid?
A The Gift Aid scheme, administered by HMRC, allows charities or CASCs to reclaim the basic rate of tax which an individual tax-payer has paid on their donation. So, if an individual who is a tax-payer makes a donation to you of £100, if they give their consent and if you are registered with HMRC, your charity can reclaim £25. For more information: www.gov.uk/claim-gift-aid
Q What can my charity claim Gift Aid on?
A Gift Aid can be claimed on donations from individuals, but there are also ‘special rules’ for activities like sponsored events, auctions, membership subscriptions, donations of goods to charity shops (www.gov.uk/claim-gift-aid/what-you-can-claim-it-on) – and there’s the Gift Aid Small Donations Scheme too (www.gov.uk/claim-gift-aid/small-donations-scheme)
Applying for grants
Q What are grant-making trusts and what do they do?
A There are many thousands of grant-makers and each one is very different, with their own history, funding priorities and reasons for giving. You can find key information on this topic in our 11-minute video. GCVS Applying for Grants – YouTube
Q How can I find potential funders for my group?
A A good place to start looking for funders is with SCVO’s Funding Scotland service. You can search their online directory free of charge to find the grant makers with the best fit for your work. Also, you can subscribe to the free weekly newsletter service from GCVS. This contains funding updates for groups in Glasgow. GCVS newsletter
Q How do I improve my chances of my application being successful?
A Preparation is key. Research the funding priorities of potential funders, check their eligibility criteria and read their guidelines carefully. There is huge competition for grant funding and only one in five grant applications is successful on average. Therefore, in order to secure sufficient funding, you will need to apply to several different funders at the same time. GCVS regularly provides free training sessions on “Making Better Applications”. Book your place here.
Q The funder is asking me how I will be able to “Demonstrate impact”. Help?
A GCVS offers training and support to help you to set achievable outcomes and measure the impact of your work – the difference that your group makes in the local community. Have a look at our Quality and Impact page for training and resources.
Q I have heard that there is a way of donating to charity direct from my pay. Is this true?
A Yes – under the Payroll Giving Scheme, employers register with a Payroll Giving Agency, which administers the scheme. Employees can then give direct to their favourite causes and receive the tax benefit themselves. For a basic rate tax-payer to give a donation of £10.00 a month, only £8.00 is deducted from their salary. Information for groups here: www.gov.uk/payroll-giving
Q Where do I find out what volunteers can and can’t do when they’re fundraising for us?
A Have a look at the Code of Fundraising Practice’s section on working with volunteers.
Q A volunteer wants to organise a fundraising event for us?
A That’s brilliant news! If they are planning an event which you agree to and are supporting, then the volunteer is acting “on behalf of” your organisation. The Chartered Institute of Fundraising has some helpful advice on working with volunteer fundraisers.
Q How can I find volunteers to help us to raise funds?
A Contact our TSI partner, Volunteer Glasgow, they can help you to find, recruit, induct and manage your volunteers www.volunteerglasgow.org
(Information updated August 2021)
Fundraising Quick Guide Videos
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