Code of Practice

The Association of Fundraising Consultants exists to foster the development and growth of the profession of fundraising consultants, to preserve and enhance fundraising activity, to ensure high professional standards amongst our members, and to promote a true understanding of the role of fundraising.
Fundraising consultants act for not-for-profit organisations in an advisory capacity and do not normally directly solicit or receive funds. This Code of Practice reflects the purposes of the Association and describes the standards that AFC members have agreed to observe.

  1. Members and employees and sub-contracted consultants engaged by members agree to abide by this Code of Practice and its complaints procedure, are committed to the ideals of charitable giving and seek to bring credit to the profession through their conduct. Members will reaffirm their compliance with the Code of Practice each year.
  2. Members will make only those claims to experience, qualifications and achievements that can be shown to be genuine and will neither guarantee results nor promise to raise sums that are unrealistic.
  3. Members will acquire clients by fair means only, will not offer inducements to prospective clients or apply undue pressure in order to secure assignments.
  4. Members will serve only those not-for-profit organisations that to the best of their knowledge have aims that are worthy and intentions that are honourable.
  5. Members will promote or employ only those fundraising practices that are not harmful to the public or likely to bring the profession into disrepute.
  6. Employees and sub-contracted consultants engaged by members will have a record of relevant professional experience, and will be managed by experienced practitioners.
  7. Members will deliver professional services based on an agreed letter of appointment that details all the terms of engagement including the service to be provided; the duration of the service; the professional fee and related expenses to be charged; the method of payment, as well as arrangements for review and termination of the appointment.
  8. Professional fees payable for services rendered by members will not be calculated as a percentage of the amount raised, either on a commission or contingency fee basis. This commercial approach is a disincentive to giving, does not properly reflect the value of the service provided and encourages opportunistic and damaging fundraising practices.
  9. Members will honour the confidentiality of information to which they are privy when serving clients.
  10. Members will take care to avoid any conflict of interest in the provision of service to clients. All financial relationships between Members and their clients and other involved parties shall at all times be transparent to those involved. Members who are providing advice to their clients about the purchase of goods and services and recommend particular suppliers, will not accept payment from those suppliers for being so recommended.

To learn more about our complaints procedure or to initiate a complaint under the Code of Practice, please contact in the first instance.