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Legal and safe fundraising

It’s not the most exciting subject. But it's essential to make sure you and the people you're with are safe. And that your fundraising is legal.

Insurance – the legal bit

  • We can’t accept any responsibility for any loss, damage or injury from your event
  • Our insurance doesn’t cover your property or the property of your helpers or guests
  • It doesn’t cover personal liability for any injury you suffer or anyone else as a result of taking part in your event

So if you're organising an event that involves other people, it's important you consider what kind of insurance you need. Sometimes it's included when you hire your venue, but always check, it's not safe to assume.

You can find an insurance broker through the British Insurance Broker's Association website. They'll be able to give you impartial advice about your event and help you organise what you need.

Risk assessment – the sensible bit

You should carry out a risk assessment of every activity you want to do. It doesn’t need to be complicated - the Health and Safety Executive recommend you:

  1. Identify the hazards
  2. Decide who might be harmed and how
  3. Evaluate the risks and decide on precautions/measures to be taken
  4. Write down your findings and implement them
  5. Review your assessment and update if necessary

Your risk assessment will help you find any areas where you may be subject to an insurance claim.

Licences to thrill

You're likely to need a licence for:

  • providing alcohol or entertainment (including recorded music)
  • holding a raffle, lottery or auction
  • doing any sort of collection in a public place, for example on the streets
  • putting up banners or signs in public areas

Contact your local authority licensing department for advice on how to apply. You'll find details of who to ask on their website.

First aid

If you're holding a public event you might need to provide first aid. Visit the British Red Cross website or St Johns Ambulance website for advice.


If you're holding a large, public event you should write to the police, fire department and ambulance services and let them know what you’re doing. There's information how to do that on their websites.

Food law

If you’re serving food, make sure you prepare and serve it in a safe way. The Food Standards Agency has some great advice about food preparation on their website.

This information is a guide only. If you're unsure about anything, please contact your local council or authority or drop us an email to [email protected] and we'll try to help!