Make sure your fundraising stays legal and safe so you can raise as much as possible to support our vital work for children around the world.
Collections can be a fun way to raise donations and awareness, but to protect UNICEF, the children we work to protect and your safety when collecting, please follow the below guidelines.
Collecting on private property
Private collections take place on private premises and do not need the permission of the local authority. If you’re organising a private collection, for example at a school fair or agricultural show, you must receive written permission from the landowner.
Static collections involve the use of collection boxes which stay in one place − either on the floor or on counters in places such as shops, pubs, hotels, hospitals and reception areas. You must get written permission of the site owner or those with authority to give you permission to hold a static collection on the site.
Letter of Authority
When you have received written permission to hold your collection, please contact us for a letter of authority. This shows that we are aware of, and support, your fundraising. This letter does not constitute official permission for any fundraising activities and you must obtain any permits/licences from relevant authorities.
Street and door-to-door collections
Due to increasing levels of concern and distrust from the public around these types of collections, we do not permit street or door-to-door collections.
Visit our charity collection page for further guidance on holding a collection.
For more information on best practice and legal guidance for collections, please refer to The Code of Fundraising Practice and Guidance.
Raffles, lotteries and prize draws
There are strict legal requirements about the organisation of sweepstakes, raffles, lotteries and prize draws. More information about these rules can be found at the Gambling Commission and the Institute of Fundraising.
For all types of lottery, please consider the age of people you are selling tickets to and whether it is appropriate considering the prizes.
Small society lotteries
You don’t need a licence to run a small society lottery with your local club or group, however you must register your lottery with your local licensing authority.
- Tickets must state that the lottery is in support of UNICEF and include your name, address and date of the lottery draw.
You must not:
- Sell tickets to anyone under the age of 16
- Sell tickets on the street
If held at and as part of an event (fete, fundraising dinner, festival), your lottery can be run as an incidental lottery following these rules.
- Physical tickets must be provided to the entrant.
- Tickets can only be sold at the event, during the hours of the event.
- The organiser can claim costs to cover expenses (ticket printing, hiring equipment) up to a maximum of £100 from proceeds.
- A maximum of £500 can be used from proceeds to pay for prizes, but prizes can also be donated.
- Prizes must be awarded per lottery/sweepstake/raffle and cannot roll over into another.
- Organisers must make it clear to entrants when the results will be announced.
You can run a lottery, raffle, tombola or sweepstake with people you work with without a licence. This is known as a work lottery. Please follow the below rules.
- If you’re running the work lottery, you cannot make a profit. Proceeds must either be used for reasonable expenses and prizes, or donated to charity.
- All participants must work at the same physical location, such as an office, factory or other place of work. You cannot run a work lottery across multiple sites.
- Tickets can only be sold to anyone who works at your location.
- Tickets can only be purchased face to face (not online, via email or over the phone).
- Physical tickets must be provided to colleagues when you’re at your place of work.
- People must pay the same price for each ticket.
- The rights on the ticket are non-transferable, you can’t pass the ticket onto someone else.
- The draw can only be done on the business’s physical premises.
- The organiser can claim money for any prizes and reasonable running costs using the money you raise.
- Prizes must be won by someone each event – they can’t roll over.
Non-commercial, equal chance gaming (bingo, casino, poker etc.)
Please refer to the Gambling Commission|Fundraising with Race Nights.
Equal chance gaming is where the chances are equally favourable to all players, and they’re not competing against a bank. It includes games such as poker or bingo.
- There are spending limits per person per day, set at £8 (covering entrance/participation fees, betting stakes, any other payments in relation to the gaming).
- Any prize money paid out must be below £600 in total across all players, unless the event is the final in a series in which all of the players have previously taken part. In this case, a higher prize fund of up to £900 is allowed.
Free draws and prize competitions
Please refer to the Gambling Commission|Free draws and prize competitions
You do not need a licence or permission to run a free draw or prize competition as long as they are being ran in a way that meets the requirements of the Gambling Act 2005.
Please ensure that all materials promoting your event specify that it is ‘in support of UNICEF’. The easiest way to do this is to use our downloadable materials.
Under 18s – legal guidelines
You should always ask an adult to help you with your fundraising to make sure it’s safe and legal. Please make sure a parent/guardian reviews and accepts our volunteer fundraiser terms and conditions.