Registration of Association of Russian Fundraisers
The top priority task facing the founders of the association is the creation of an ethical code for fundraising. The Agency for Social Information decided to get an insight into the expectations of experts for the professional association.
Attempts to establish the association go back a long way, to the year 2000. However, back then, according to the experts, the market still wasn’t ready. The Russian association, in the words of its founders, had the same aims and objectives as any other professional fundraising association, namely establishing fundraising as a social institution and profession.
Professional fundraisers and colleagues from Russian non-profit organisations took an active part in founding the association. Among them are Fundraising and Communications Director of the Russian Committee “Children’s Villages – SOS” Dimitri Daushev; President of the Charitable Fund for Saving Seriously-Ill Children “Line of Life” Faina Zacharova; Director of the Charitable Fund “Beautiful Children in a Beautiful World” Victoria Sinitsina; Executive Director of the Russian Committee “Children’s Villages SOS” Nikolai Slabzhanin and the Director for the Development of Non-Profit Organisations Anna Kletzina (St Petersburg).
Irina Menshenina became Executive Director of the Association and Director for the Development of the Charitable Fund “Downside Up”. Irina has been on training courses for leaders of non-profit organisations at Harvard Business School in the USA.
Vyacheslav Bachmin – Consultant of Ch. S. Mott’s Fund in Russia and Member of the Moscow/Helsinki group
My expectations are great, although I realise this will not be an easy task. Professional associations are extremely difficult to put together, demanding considerable commitment and selfless teamwork from those taking part. This association has come together over a long period of time and has grown, one can say, out of an urgent need to establish a competent, ethical market in the fundraising area. I very much hope that this association will come into being, become an important vehicle of expert authority for us all, and will become a beacon and example of the civilised application of funds for realising charitable and social projects.
Irina Menshenina – Executive Director of the Russian Fundraisers’ Association
I would like to express my thanks to the Russian Branch of the Company “Evolution End of Philanthropy” and to Olga Evdokimova (Director of the company – editor’s note) personally for their support in creating this association. A great deal of thanks must also go to a group of colleagues who formed a working group and who also invested their own resources, time, expertise and reputation into this association. Among the first tasks facing the association will be developing an ethical code for fundraisers, increasing qualifications and improving the fundraising infrastructure within Russia. Members of the association will begin their work over the next 2-3 months. For the time being, it is very important that we develop the necessary procedures and take measured decisions regarding membership, membership fees and services. I believe that the Russian Association of Fundraisers is standing at the beginning of a long and beautiful road.
Dimitri Daushev – Fundraising and Communications Director of the Russian Committee “Children’s Villages – SOS”
As with any other Fundraising Association around the world, our main task is exactly that – fundraising. Firstly, this is a growth area of the civilised charity market. We want to advise funding and non-profit bodies about attracting resources, using appropriate, modern-day instruments, and for company people to recognise the necessity of helping financially as a matter of course. Secondly, the advancement of ethical standards. Which funding is ethical and which isn’t, and which instruments can be used. Thirdly, training for representatives of non-profit organisations and potential donors who can help with this (companies, private individuals). Also, the progression of fundraising both as an activity area and as a profession because no-one, apart from non-profit bodies, recognises this term. We want the fundraising profession to become the norm on the jobs’ market so that people have the chance of becoming a fundraiser. I have often heard fund directors say that there’s no-one out there to whom we could offer a fundraising job. There’s a huge demand, but few ways forward. It’s possible that this will happen because there’s no such profession in the eyes of the public.
Tatiana Tulchinskaya – Director of the Charitable Fund for Aid to Orphaned Children “Here and Now”
We have long since wanted such an association. There is a major demand to improve standards in ethical transparency of fundraising because this has been the subject of much confusion in recent times. The first document we release into the public domain will most likely be on an ethical code for fundraisers. At present, there are no such standards governing fundraising activities. There are no places where this can be taught, no-one is appearing on the scene with a fundraising degree, and there is no general awareness of the concept of ethical fundraising. Expectations of the association are many. First all, I’d like there to be some kind of networking activity among professionals. There are people out there who are fundraisers but who don’t recognise themselves as such. It is important that the interests of the sector are protected.
Author: Yulia Vyatkina