Telephone fund-raising services for charities of social value are regulated by the Code of Conduct signed by all telephone operators.
In 2014, the main telecommunications operators, virtual mobile network operators, broadcasters and national publishers signed a Memorandum of Understanding with the Department of Civil Defence, which defined a procedure for the immediate activation and prompt dissemination of charity telephone numbers to raise funds for areas affected by natural disasters. The Protocol, which was valid for three years, is currently being updated.
The numbers that can be used for fund-raising – identified and regulated by the National Numbers Plan in the 455XY ranges ‒ are allocated to the Tertiary Sector and are listed as “special public numbers” without interconnection obligations. They are distinguished as either a permanent and temporary number:
- the numbers 455XY with X= 1, 2, 3, (30 numbers) are allocated on a permanent basis;
- the numbers 455XY with X= 0, 8, 9, (30 numbers) are allocated on a temporary basis.
The other ranges are reserved for future developments and for requests as they develop. As requested by the Department of Civil Defence, the numbers 45599 and 45500 are reserved for fund-raising initiatives related to emergencies and natural disasters.
Fundraising initiatives with TIM customers in 2018
A total of 128 fund-raising campaigns were held in 2018 with over €11.3 million raised.
The 2018 national and international campaigns saw a shift in focus among TIM donors: the drop in funds raised for scientific research and medical/surgical and healthcare assistance (around -22.74%) was offset by the substantial increase – around twofold - for projects concerning personal protection, particularly with regard to female victims of violence, the elderly and minors. There was also an increase in fund-raising for the protection of animals and the environment.
Meanwhile, national sensitivity as regards Nutrition and Social Protection and the concepts of saving food and combating food waste fell by 12.4 percentage points.