Face to face fundraising

Face to face fundraising is a cost effective way for the British Heart Foundation to secure a reliable source of income to help us raise money to fund our life saving research. It helps us spread the word about the pioneering work we do, and thanks to the generosity of our supporters and the hard work of our face to face fundraisers, last year we recruited over 33,000 new supporters – raising approximately £1.4m over 12 months. 

We use professional fundraising agency Home Fundraising to carry out our face to face fundraising campaigns. This organisation strictly adheres to current industry standards and guidelines and is regulated by the Fundraising Regulator

If you’re visited by a face to face fundraiser and agree to support the BHF by direct debit, you’ll be providing us with regular donations to help us to continue our life saving research, as well as allowing us to plan ahead for the future and keep administrative costs to a minimum.  

Our Customer Service Centre is open 9am – 5pm Monday to Friday. If you have any complaints or comments to make on our Door to Door fundraising outside of these hours please contact our after-hours Door to Door query line on 07789 462829. You can either text us or leave us a voicemail and we will aim to get back to urgent queries within 20 minutes. This line is open from 5-9.30pm, Monday to Friday, and 12-9.30pm on Saturdays. Please note, this number is only for Door to Door fundraising enquiries. The fundraising team is unable to help with shop and store enquiries outside of office hours.

Have a question about face to face fundraising? Take a look at our FAQs below.

What is face to face fundraising?

Our professional fundraisers visit homes in areas throughout the UK, asking people to give a regular donation to the British Heart Foundation via direct debit. Some face to face fundraisers also work on high streets, or in shopping centres, asking people if they have time to stop and talk about supporting our research. We work with specialist agencies that help us co-ordinate and carry out our campaigns. The agency we currently use is Home Fundraising.

Why do we use this method of fundraising?

Face to face fundraising is a successful and cost effective way for us to generate the income we need to help fund life-saving research. Direct debits are an easy way for supporters to donate, and the supporters recruited via face to face fundraising are incredibly loyal – helping us generate long term, regular, predictable income that’s so vital to funding the level of research necessary. Face to face fundraising also enables us to raise awareness of the work we do, and how the British Heart Foundation can help and support people affected by heart and circulatory conditions and their associated risk factors.

Why do we use agencies? 

Professional agencies allow us to utilise skilled fundraisers and reach more people so we can raise more money for our vital research. These agencies are industry-leading and have considerable experience of conducting this type of fundraising. 

Will fundraisers ever ask for cash?

No. Our fundraisers are not allowed to take cash from you - they’re only permitted to ask for regular donations through a direct debit. They also can’t take one-off donations.

What time do our fundraisers work? 

Our face to face fundraisers will typically work between 12pm and 9pm, Monday to Saturday, as that’s when people are most likely to be home. Fundraisers based on private sites (such as shopping centres) will work hours in line with the opening times of the shopping centre/site.

All our face to face fundraisers work hours in accordance with the Fundraising Regulator’s Code of Practice

If you have any concerns or issues with the time a fundraiser makes contact with you, please call 0300 330 3322 or email [email protected].

Who regulates face to face fundraising?

The Fundraising Regulator is the independent regulator of charitable fundraising set up in the wake of a cross party review in 2015. All face to face fundraising is regulated by the Fundraising Regulator and its corresponding handbooks.

The Fundraising Regulator is responsible for ensuring organisations are following the Fundraising code of Practice, and works with charities, professional fundraising organisations and local authorities to minimise complaints and ensure high standards of fundraising are adhered to.

Find out more about the Fundraising Regulator.

Are your Fundraisers trained?

As part of our commitment to our supporters and to maintaining high standards, all professional fundraisers are trained. All professional fundraising agencies are required to provide extensive training to their fundraisers prior to commencing any face to face activity. Our specialist trainer also provides face to face fundraisers with BHF-specific training before the start of any fundraising campaign.

We provide regular refresher training to all face to face fundraisers on an ongoing basis, and conduct regular observations of the agencies’ fundraising training.

How can I stop my door being knocked?

If you’d rather not hear from our face to face fundraisers in the future, please let us know and we can add you to our “do not call” list. Please note this will only stop BHF fundraisers from knocking – other charities may still call, so you will have to notify them separately.

You can also contact your local council to enquire about receiving a “no cold calling” window sticker.  Our fundraisers will not knock on any door that clearly displays a sticker which includes one of the following phrases: “no cold calling”, “no cold callers”, “no charities”, “no charity canvassers” or “no charity fundraisers”.

How do I know fundraisers are who they say they are?

Professional fundraisers working on behalf on the British Heart Foundation can always be identified, as they will:

  • Wear a red jacket, T-shirt or tabard with British Heart Foundation branding
  • Have a clearly visible fundraiser ID badge that includes: 
    > Fundraiser name
    > Photograph
    > ID Number

If you can’t see a Fundraiser ID badge, please ask the fundraiser to show it to you, and to make sure it’s visible at all times. If you have a serious concern, please call our Customer Care team on 0300 330 3322, Monday-Friday 9-5pm, email [email protected], or call our dedicated out of hours face to face query line on 07789 462829. This line is open from 5-9.30 pm Monday to Friday, and 12-9.30pm on Saturdays.