Do It Right!

Fundraising materials should say:

“I am/we are fundraising on behalf of Heads Above The Waves – CIC number 9534155”

It’s so people are aware of who we are and that it’s a registered, legal organisation.

Heads Above The Waves is not a registered charity – please don’t call us a charity! We’re a Community Interest Company (CIC) which means we’re a limited company, where all the profits go towards benefitting the community, specifically people affected by self-harm issues. So while we are a charitable company, we’re not a registered charity.

Try to avoid spending too much money on putting together your fundraising activities in the first place. Obviously, don’t let it affect the quality of your fundraising, but where you can, try to get others involved in helping you out, so you’re collecting money for a good cause, rather than having to put most of what you raise into covering your costs. After all, you want to have something to show for all your hard work!

Think about whether you’ll need a license from your local authority – this will be for things like:

  • Music or dancing events
  • Selling alcohol
  • Late night events
  • Providing food and/or drink
  • Copyright for things like film screenings
  • Collecting money or selling items in a public place

If you’re unsure, it’s best to find out first!

Stay safe

It’s good to challenge and push yourself, but whatever you’re doing, make sure you’ve got someone qualified, with plenty of experience along with you who can help if things go a bit pear shaped. And if you’re doing something dangerous, make sure you’re wearing a helmet!

As well as keeping yourself safe, it’s important to keep everyone around you safe. If you’re doing an event, make sure you think about any and all potential risks – and what you’re going to do to prevent them. If you’re doing anything to do with food, be fully aware of everyone’s allergies.

Keep it legal

Anyone actually collecting money must be over 16.

If you’re going to be running an event make sure you get permission from the right people (venues, local authorities, etc.).

People should be aware of what they’re giving money to support, so if you want a reminder of where your money will go, or if you want to share it with your supporters, check this page out.

There are all sorts of legal obligations when running a raffle (who’d have thought, right?) but you can read the legalities Gambling Commission.

If you’re going to be collecting money, don’t do it door to door, or in the street without a license as this is illegal. It’s legal to collect money on privately owned property, just make sure you have the permission of the owner or the business.

Food Hygiene

If you’re going to be doing anything involving food (or drink), for example a bake sale, take care to follow basic rules for safe food preparation, storage, cooking and display. You don’t want to be making anyone ill as a result of your good fundraising work!


If you’re running an event, it’s worth considering taking out public liability insurance, should the worst happen and someone gets hurt. If you’re organising the event, you’re responsible for making sure that no-one attending is at risk, so it’s worth taking proper precautions.

Data Protection

If you’re gathering people’s personal details, for example on a fundraising form. There are certain criteria you need to be meeting, in line with the Data Protection Act, but as a general rule of thumb: don’t keep anyone’s details for longer than you need to, and never share anyone’s details without their permission. You can see our Data Protection Policy.