The Seal-of-Approval

The DZI Seal-of-Approval is the quality label for reputable fundraising organizations. It proves that an organization is careful and responsible in spending donors’ money.

What is more, sealed charities voluntarily comply with the DZI standards (PDF) and are thus prepared to meet highest quality demands. They are efficient, they work transparently, they operate economically, their information is factual and truthful, and they have effective mechanisms of supervision and control. So they can guarantee that the donations they receive will be spent for charitable purposes.

It is thus that the DZI Seal-of-Approval is highly respected by the population, by authorities, by the media, and by the fundraising organizations themselves. And it is an essential criterion in cases that a high level of certitude is required. For example, in fundraising campaigns, many print media as well as TV and radio stations only cooperate with charities with the DZI Seal-of-Approval. The giving decisions of the Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development and of the Federal Foreign Office are particularly based on the Seal-of-Approval as well.

Presently, about 230 organizations hold the DZI Seal-of-Approval. On average, about 30 percent of initial applications are unsuccessful. The sealed charities altogether use a donation volume of 1.2 billion euros per year which is about a quarter of the overall donations in Germany. This is why the DZI Seal-of-Approval is the most important sign of trust in the fundraising sector. Its significance is attested by the German consumer organization “Stiftung Warentest”, too. In its consumer magazine “Finanztest”, Stiftung Warentest evaluates the Seal-of-Approval as a real seal of quality for fundraisers.

Since May 2012, DZI has been receiving enquiries about the association “European Donation Seal” which has given seals “for honour” to numerous fundraising organizations without any initiatives or applications on the part of these organizations. DZI has elaborated a position paper (PDF) to this effect in which it dissociates itself from this association and indicates that the European Union does not have any official donation seal at all.