Why it’s time for positive change to charity lotteries

 
Jo Bucci
People's Postcode Lottery ambassadors Jeff Brazier and Danyl Johnson presenting winning cheques to lucky players from Kennington in Kent. (Source: David Copeman)

People’s Postcode Lottery launched in 2005 with a clear goal – to become an innovative fundraising operation in Great Britain and raise awareness for good causes.

Since its launch players have awarded over £250m to more than 4,000 good causes across Great Britain and internationally. More than 200 charities are now supported in London alone (as highlighted in the map on the next page). Here we ask Jo Bucci, Managing Director of People's Postcode Lottery, how even more charities can be supported.

You have been calling on the UK Government to change the law on charity lotteries – why?

The current law is out of date and not only caps the amount of money a charity lottery can raise for good causes, but in some cases is having the effect of actually reducing the amount of money some charities are receiving. That was surely never the intention when the law was drafted.

What changes are you asking for?

The current law limits each charity lottery to an annual turnover of £10m, and also limits the value of tickets in each draw to £4m. We are asking for these limits to be raised to £100m and £10m, respectively. This will allow charities to gain more funds, will reduce administration costs and will also make the system more transparent for players.

So it’s a policy change not costing the taxpayer anything, while raising more for charity? Sounds like a no-brainer!

We think so! And so do many charities across the country. Other major organisations such as The Institute of Fundraising, The Lotteries Council and The Hospice Lotteries Association have also backed the proposals, as have Parliamentarians across all major political parties.

So is the Government listening?

There was a House of Commons Select Committee enquiry into the issue in 2014, then the Gambling Commission looked at the issue in 2015, and the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport has been considering what to do since then. It’s been a lengthy process and we hope that Ministers will soon bring forward plans which help charity lotteries raise more funds for good causes.

Players of People’s Postcode Lottery pay £10 for 10 draws paid monthly in advance. A minimum of 31 per cent goes directly to charities, with guaranteed winners every day. Visit postcodelottery.co.uk or call 0808 109 8765.

Read more: Giving Magazine 2017

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