Thursday, February 17, 2011

Fundraisers Contemplate Ethical Issues

Making sure that nonprofits use funds in a manner that is consistent with their mission and the motivations of their donors ranks as one of the most common and difficult challenges faced by fundraisers. This is according to a new website poll conducted by the Association of Fundraising Professionals (AFP). Participants in the poll were asked what kind of ethical challenge they were most likely to face in their fundraising efforts, and they were presented with 7 choices.

Nearly a third of all respondents reported that the use of donated funds was the greatest area of concern. Sixteen percent selected challenges related to privacy and confidentiality, and fifteen percent highlighted the issue of donor control over gifts. Other options included percentage-based compensation/commission and conflicts of interest. According to Paulette Maehara, CEO of AFP, the use of donated funds is one of the key aspects of ethical fundraising practices, particularly as charitable gifts increase in size. Maehara has stated that it's crucial that fundraisers and donors collaborate and develop sound documentation to ensure that disagreements are avoided. The results of the survey are based on the input of 569 people who participated on January 20th.

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