Vulnerable Persons Policy

We believe that giving to NRAS should be a positive experience for all.


What is a vulnerable person?

We recognise that some of the people we engage with through our fundraising activities may not always have the capacity to fully understand the nature of the donation they are being asked to make to NRAS or the consequences of making that donation.

An individual who finds it difficult to immediately make an informed decision about the choices offered to them is called a ‘vulnerable person’.

A vulnerable person may experience: 

  • A diagnosed condition such as dementia.
  • A recent bereavement .
  • An undiagnosed or temporary mental health condition such as severe anxiety.
  • Learning difficulties .
  • Difficulty understanding the language or terminology.

Our obligation to protect vulnerable people

NRAS has an obligation to protect vulnerable people and those in vulnerable circumstances. Whenever we suspect that someone we engage with is lacking capacity or is in vulnerable circumstances – we call them a ‘vulnerable supporter’ – we will take steps to terminate the contact regarding any fundraising activity in a way which seeks to:

  • Protect that person.
  • Protect their dignity.
  • Note any desire they have expressed to support NRAS.

Fundraising and vulnerable supporters

If a fundraiser suspects that a person they are talking to may be vulnerable, they must end the conversation/communication immediately. They should do this politely, without:

  • Making a request for a donation.
  • Asking about the individual’s capacity to make a decision or the existence of vulnerable circumstances.

We know that it may be difficult in some situations for fundraisers to decide whether or not someone is in a vulnerable circumstance or lacks capacity. We provide guidelines for fundraisers but our approach is always to err on the side of caution.

This applies to all fundraising by our direct employees. We do not use third party fundraisers or agencies.

We believe everyone has the right to donate if they wish to and are able to do so. That’s why we offer further support for people in vulnerable circumstances who want to make a decision about whether to make a donation and they should do this by calling our team on 01628 823524.

Our policy is informed by the Fundraising Regulator’s Code of Fundraising Practice and their guidance which can be found at:

Our vulnerable person policy

  • NRAS is compassionate towards its supporters and will never exploit vulnerability.
  • We will always do everything we can to assist supporters to make informed decisions about the support they choose to give to NRAS.
  • We fully comply with the Fundraising Regulator’s Code of Fundraising Practice.
  • NRAS does not accept donations where it has reason to believe that a supporter may be experiencing vulnerable circumstances and that accepting the donation would be ethically wrong and/or harmful to the donor.
  • Should a situation arise where NRAS becomes aware that it has unknowingly accepted donations from an individual during a time that he or she was experiencing vulnerable circumstances, it will endeavour to return all donations accepted during this period.
  • Should NRAS receive information regarding a supporter’s vulnerability it will seek to ensure that this is taken into account and removed from future marketing activities.
  • NRAS recognises that it may sometimes be difficult for fundraisers to assess the vulnerability of a supporter; in cases where a fundraiser is unsure, they must ask their manager for a second opinion and approval to accept any donation.

Other related documents: