FINLAND: Fundraising Act approved by the parliament

(European Fundraising Association) A new Fundraising Act has been approved by the Finnish parliament and has been welcomed by the sector, with the expectation that this will make it easier for charities – particularly smaller organisations – to raise vital funds.

Pia Tornikoski, member of the working group for fundraising legislation reform and secretary general of the Finnish Fundraising Association (VaLa), said:

“The new Act will encourage a wider group of charities to raise funds from the public and offer more opportunities for how and through which channels charities can appeal to the potential donors. During the development of this new legislation, the ministry gained a far clearer insight into fundraising in Finland, understanding that fundraisers work professionally and are respectful of their own stakeholders, from donors to beneficiaries.”

The legislation was proposed last year to replace the fixed-term money collection licences that are required each time fundraising activity is arranged. Under the new Act, licences will not be needed for small-scale fundraising. Fundraisers will be able to organise fundraising up to twice per calendar year, with the maximum amount raised each time set at €10,000.

However, any activity aiming to raise over this amount will require a licence granted by the National Police Board. The legislation will also require the fundraising organiser to be a not-for-profit organisation registered in Finland, and for the fundraising to be for charitable purposes.

The approved Act is scheduled to come into force in 2020.