Donor Engagement Policy
1. Purpose & Scope
Vitamin Angels is committed to making decisions that are in the best interest of the women, children, and the charity itself. This Policy helps to ensure that we do not compromise on our mission and values when it comes to generating revenues. It is designed to minimize the risks and maximize the benefits of stakeholder engagement (including donors, Vitamin Angels, program partners, and women and children).
2. General Policy
The primary purpose of the Policy is to promote the financial support of Vitamin Angels in a manner that does not:
- Encumber Vitamin Angels with gifts which may prove to generate more cost than benefit,
- Encumber Vitamin Angels effort to fulfill its programmatic objectives and targets,
- Come with restrictions that are not in keeping with the stated goals of Vitamin Angels, and/or
- Create a perception of Vitamin Angels that is not in keeping with its mission or might provide more harm than benefit to Vitamin Angels’ reputation, fundraising, charitable cause and/or the women and children it serves.
3. Our Due Diligence Process
While engagement with the vast majority of our donors is low risk and non-controversial, we still must conduct due diligence on all potential donors before we enter into agreements with them. Engagement with any donor must satisfy the General Policy as stated above. It should be understood that flexibility must be maintained within this Policy since some gift situations may be complex.
3.1 Potential Partners Presenting Unacceptable Risks
Some potential donors present unacceptable risks. It is the policy of Vitamin Angels to NOT engage with any entity:
- Currently on any EU, UK, or U.S. banned or sanctioned entities/persons lists,
- Credibly involved in human rights violations, human trafficking or child labor,
- Credibly engaged in unethical practices including bribery or other forms of corruption,
- Directly engaged in the manufacture, marketing, sale, and/or distribution of breast milk substitutes (BMS), tobacco, armaments, firearms or other weaponry, and/or explosives.
The specific procedures of our Due Diligence Process to determine whether an entity falls into one of these categories are available separately.
3.2 Other Considerations for Potential Partners
Engagement with any donor including those that might have an affiliation (i.e., parent company, subsidiary, shared branding etc.) with an entity falling into a category enumerated in Sections 3.1. must satisfy the following criteria:
- The donation to Vitamin Angels may not involve activities related to the proscribed conduct identified in Section 3.1.
- The revenue donated to VA must not be generated from the manufacturing, marketing, sale, and/or distribution of products outlined in Section 3.1.
- Any marketing or public facing communications of the partnership by a donor should not promote the sale or use of a product identified in Section 3.1.
4. Engagement Formalization
After due diligence is completed and the donor is cleared for engagement, the engagement is memorialized by a formal written agreement in accordance with Vitamin Angels contracting Standard Operating Procedures. While specific requirements for agreement formalization depend upon several factors the ultimate goal should be to negotiate contracts that maintain Vitamin Angels’ independence. Thus, the following guidelines shall be applied to agreement formalization:
- Formal agreements must clearly spell out the goals of the engagement, roles, and responsibilities of each party, and any associated benefits to the partner and Vitamin Angels;
- Agreements must include clauses allowing for Vitamin Angels to exit partner relationships at any time a partner breaches its agreement or presents an unacceptable risk to Vitamin Angels, including but not limited to violating this Donor Engagement Policy; and,
- Agreements must include a clause that the donor will not connect the partnership to proscribed products in section 3.1 in its marketing activities.
5. Roles and Responsibilities
The Board of Directors is responsible for the oversight and approval of the due diligence and engagement processes. The Governance Committee is responsible for reviewing cases escalated from the due diligence. In such cases the Governance Committee may conduct further due diligence and shall recommend to the Board of Directors whether or not to engage the potential donor. The Board of Directors or its Executive Committee shall have final authority whether to approve the engagement. The actual conduct of the due diligence process shall be conducted by the Vitamin Angels’ management team.
6. Approval, Display, Review and Revisions
This Policy shall be in force upon approval by Vitamin Angels’ Board of Directors. It shall be publicly available through Vitamin Angels’ website. This Policy shall be subject to periodical review and revision as deemed appropriate by the Board of Directors.