Donor Rights and Ethical Fundraising

Cal State East Bay, among many other institutions worldwide, follows a set of professional guidelines to ensure that donors are treated with respect, and that their gifts are used responsibly and in the manner intended.

Donor Bill of Rights

Philanthropy is based on voluntary action for the common good. It is a tradition of giving and sharing that is primary to the quality of life. To assure that philanthropy merits the respect and trust of the general public, and that donors and prospective donors can have full confidence in the not-for-profit organizations and causes they are asked to support, we declare that all donors have these rights:

To be informed of the organization's mission, of the way the organization intends to use donated resources, and of its capacity to use donations effectively for their intended purposes.

To be informed of the identity of those serving on the organization's governing board, and to expect the board to exercise prudent judgment in its stewardship responsibilities.

  • To have access to the organization's most recent financial statements.
  • To be assured their gifts will be used for the purposes for which they were given.
  • To receive appropriate acknowledgment and recognition.
  • To be assured that information about their donations is handled with respect and with confidentiality to the extent provided by law.
  • To expect that all relationships with individuals representing organizations of interest to the donor will be professional in nature.
  • To be informed whether those seeking donations are volunteers, employees of the organization or hired solicitors.
  • To have the opportunity for their names to be deleted from mailing lists that an organization may intend to share.
  • To feel free to ask questions when making a donation and to receive prompt, truthful and forthright answers.

The text of this statement in its entirety was developed by the American Association of Fund-Raising Counsel (AAFRC), Association for Healthcare Philanthropy (AHP), Council for Advancement and Support of Education (CASE), and the Association of Fundraising Professionals (AFP), and adopted in November 1993.

CASE Statement of Ethics

Institutional advancement professionals, by nature of our responsibilities within the academic community, represent our schools, colleges and universities to the larger society. We have, therefore, a duty to exemplify the best qualities of our institutions and to observe the highest standards of personal and professional conduct.

  • We conduct ourselves in a manner which is consistent with the best interests of the institution we represent.
  • Our words and actions embody respect for truth, fairness, free inquiry and the opinions of others.
  • We promote the merits of our institutions, and of education generally, respecting both our colleagues and the mission of each institution.
  • We respect, celebrate, and include all individuals regardless of race, gender, sexual orientation, ethnicity, nationality, physical ability or age.We uphold the professional reputation of colleague advancement professionals and give credit for ideas, words or images originated by others.
  • We communicate clearly and fairly with others, remaining mindful of the importance of representing our institution’s mission and interests.
  • We safeguard privacy rights and confidential information.
  • We do not grant or accept gifts or services for personal or individual professional gain, nor do we solicit or accept gifts or services for our institutions in which a higher public interest would be violated.
  • We avoid actual or apparent conflicts of interest and, if in doubt, seek guidance regarding how to proceed.
  • We report transgressions and/or unethical activities to the appropriate authority in order that the institution take the necessary action.
  • We bring abusive and/or harassing conduct to the attention of institutional leadership in order that individuals who have been subject to such abuse are protected.
  • We follow the letter and spirit of pertinent laws and regulations, understanding that those strictures might be different in other countries and cultures.
  • We align the policies and procedures of our department with those of other departments, in order that the institution can have a holistic and integrated approach to ethical conduct.
  • We observe these standards and others that apply to our profession and actively encourage colleagues to join us in supporting the highest standards of conduct.

The CASE Board of Trustees adopted this Statement of Ethics to guide and reinforce our professional conduct. The Board adopted the final text on March 12, 2020. This Statement is meant to align with the CASE Principles of Practice for the professional areas as well as the CASE Zero Tolerance Pledge.