Donation and grant acceptance

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Comment This policy was updated with input from staff, trustees and the Wikimedia UK volunteer community and approved by the board in March 2017.

This document details Wikimedia UK's policy for accepting donations. It takes into consideration that there are circumstances in which it may not be appropriate for Wikimedia UK to accept a particular donation, and that there are other situations where careful consideration of a potential donation needs to take place prior to its acceptance. Guiding principles

Wikimedia UK will accept all donations that will enable it to further its charitable objectives, unless;

There is a significant risk that a donation represents funds that the donor is not legally entitled to (e.g. the proceeds of theft, fraud or money-laundering). A gift is made with restrictions on how the charity may spend it which are disproportionate to the likely impact of the gift. A gift poses the risk of adverse publicity to the charity that would hinder the charity's ability to fulfil its mission more than the gift enhances that ability. In any other way, there is a risk that a proposed donation would not help fulfil our charitable objectives.

In applying these principles, the charity into account its values of Wikimedia UK and the expectations of the Wikimedia movement.

Grants and donations

  • It is the responsibility of any staff member or volunteer dealing with donations to Wikimedia UK to identify any areas of risk associated with a donation. If any person has a concern that a donation of any value may not be acceptable for any of the reasons above, then they should contact the Chief Executive for advice.
  • The Chief Executive should determine whether there is any material risk associated with a donation, and either they or the Board should determine whether or not to accept the donation.
  • The Chief Executive has the authority to determine the acceptance of grants or donations of less than £25,000 if no risks have been identified or less than £5,000 where risks have been identified.
  • Grants or donations of £5,000 or more, where any risks have been identified, should be referred to the Board for discussion.
  • The Board will be informed of all donations and grants of or over £5,000.
  • All donations or grants of £25,000 or more should be discussed a Board level prior to acceptance.

Gifts in kind

  • Gifts in kind from partners institutions will be calculated and accounted for as per our established accounting practices
  • Gifts in kind in the form of capital items will only be accepted where the current market value of the goods exceeds the cost of ethically disposing of the goods, or where we are certain the charity will benefit from the use of the gift.
  • All Gifts in kind are subject to the approval of the Chief Executive.
  • Gifts in kind that exceed a net value of £25,000 will be subject to Board approval.

Security Gifts

  • All gifts in terms of stocks and bonds and other financial instruments require the approval of the Chief Executive prior to the acceptance of receipt, and should follow the policy for donations above in determining whether they also need board approval.


Donors may commit to future gifts ("pledges"), which Wikimedia UK will generally treat as gifts of cash. A donor who commits to a future gift of £10,000 or more may be asked to sign a WMUK pledge agreement.

See also Wikimedia Foundation's Gift policy.