Our Promise to You
At Comic Relief, we aim to put our supporters at the heart of everything that we do, and your opinion is very important to us, so if you’re ever unhappy with us or you think we might have done something wrong, we want to hear from you.
We openly welcome you to contact us with your comments, suggestions, and complaints. Complaints are especially important to us as they help us to see where our services, procedures and activities might be improved. All feedback is recorded and reviewed regularly, and we report on our complaints in our own Annual Report and our annual report to the Fundraising Regulator.
We promise to take all complaints seriously, and to deal with them quickly, efficiently, and fairly.
Ways to Contact Us
If you would like to make a complaint, the best way to do this is by email. You can contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org(opens in new window)
Or you can write to us at:
Comic Relief, 6th Floor, The White Chapel Building, 10 Whitechapel High Street, London, E1 8QS, United Kingdom
Call us on: 020 7820 2000
Please mark all written correspondence for the attention of the "Supporter Services Team", this will help ensure your complaint is dealt with as quickly as possible.
We will acknowledge receipt of your complaint within 2 working days.
We will carry out a full investigation of your complaint and will advise you of our findings within 10 working days, however if your complaint requires further investigation, we will send an interim response and will advise you of our findings within 4 weeks.
If you are a journalist wanting to speak to us about a complaint or concern, please see our Press Centre for details on how to get in touch.
Comic Relief is committed to resolving complaints in an appropriate, fair and timely way. We welcome feedback as it helps us to understand more about how the public feel about the work we do and our campaigns, and it gives us an opportunity to improve the way we work.
This policy sets out how you can make a complaint, what you can expect from Comic Relief when you do so and how you can escalate a complaint if you are unhappy with the outcome.
1. Making A Complaint
Comic Relief defines a complaint as a considered communication from a member of the public which states:
An expression of anger, upset or dissatisfaction.
Something that is the cause or subject of protest or outcry.
An allegation concerning Comic Relief, its activities or the activities of its fundraisers, a partner or organisation supported or funded by Comic Relief.
1.1 Your personal information
If you use our complaints procedure, you are agreeing that we can use any personal information you send us for purposes connected with your complaint. We will only give your personal information to other people and organisations if you have given us permission to do so. If you are able to give this permission when you contact us with details of your complaint, this can help us to start the investigation quickly.
2. Comic Relief’s Complaints Response Process
Comic Relief takes complaints seriously and has an internal process which guides how we handle complaints.
We aim to respond to a complaint within 10 working days of receiving it, however if a complaint requires further investigation, we will send an interim response and will advise you of our findings within 4 weeks of receipt of your complaint.
If you are not happy with our response, please let us know as soon as possible. Your complaint will be referred to a more senior member of staff, who will carry out a review and let you know the outcome of their investigation within 4 weeks.
Comic Relief seeks to handle all complaints impartially, and making a complaint will not affect the future level of service you receive from us.
2.1 Timing of complaints
We may be unable to investigate and resolve complaints if they refer to an incident more than three months in the past.
2.2 Complaints and anonymity
Comic Relief can usually only investigate complaints where the identity of the complainant is known so that it is possible to go back and verify information if needed. When an anonymous complaint is received of a serious nature, Comic Relief may consider investigating if there is enough information to guide further enquiries.
2.3 Regulatory and legal bodies
Comic Relief may decide to pass a complaint to regulatory or legal authorities (e.g. the Charity Commission or the police) in the UK if there is a reasonable basis to suspect that an organisation or individual have acted illegally.
2.4 Escalating a Complaint
If your complaint concerns fundraising and you are dissatisfied with the outcome of our investigation, you may refer the matter to the Fundraising Regulator.
For more information please go to fundraisingregulator.org.uk(opens in new window)
If your complaint concerns our charitable activities and you remain dissatisfied with our response you can contact the Charity Commission (0845 300 0218 or charitycommission.gov.uk(opens in new window)) or the Office of the Scottish Charity Regulator (01382 220446 or oscr.org.uk(opens in new window)) for advice.
2.5 Complaints about programming
Please note that any complaints concerning any programmes on the BBC should be directed to the BBC. Details can be found at bbc.co.uk/complaints(opens in new window)
3. Complaints About Grant Making
3.1 Comic Relief grant-making procedures
Comic Relief works hard to ensure that the assessment of applications and management of grants we make to partners is done in a fair and consistent way.
Comic Relief cannot consider appeals against the rejection of an application by a short-listing team or a final decision by Trustees to reject an application or withdraw a grant.
If an organisation or individual is unhappy about our decision making, application processes or our management of a grant, the complaints process outlined in section 1 should be followed.
3.2 Complaints about organisations funded by Comic Relief
Comic Relief will usually only consider complaints against funded organisations regarding:
Failure to comply with conditions of grant.
Allegations of inappropriate behaviour by organisation staff.
Concern over the effectiveness or transparency of governance, financial and resource management systems.
Allegations about an organisation or individuals within the funded organisation that, by association, may damage Comic Relief’s reputation.
If an individual or organisation would like to make a complaint regarding an organisation funded by Comic Relief, they should follow Comic Relief’s complaints procedure outlined in section 1.
In some instances it may be agreed that the complaint should be passed to the grant holding organisation so that they can undertake their own investigation. Comic Relief will always seek to keep the complainant’s identity in confidence, unless otherwise agreed with the complainant.
4. There may be some circumstances when Comic Relief choose not to respond to a complaint. These include:
When a complaint is about something that Comic Relief has no direct connection to. We may choose to reply to clarify details but we are not obliged to.
When someone unreasonably pursues a complaint that we have already responded to. They will be given escalation points but we may choose not to reply again, we will inform you of our decision to do this.
When a complainant is being obviously abusive, prejudiced or offensive in their manner.
When a complainant is harassing a member of staff.
When a complaint is incoherent or illegible.
When a complaint has clearly been sent to us and numerous other organisations as part of a bulk mailing or email. In this instance we can chose whether it is necessary for us to reply or not.