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Donation Acceptance and Management Policy

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Section 1 - Purpose

(1) The purpose of this policy is to provide the principles for the acceptance and management of donations to the University.

(2) The Donation Acceptance and Management Procedure should be read in conjunction with this document.

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Section 2 - Scope  

(3) This policy applies to all donations made to the University.

(4) This policy does not apply to:

  1. personal gifts to individual employees (refer Conflict of Interest Policy).
  2. instances of individuals volunteering time or expertise (refer Volunteer (Including Volunteer Researcher) Policy)
  3. donations of bodies for medical research and training (refer Body Donor Program).
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Section 3 - Audience

(5) Staff, University of Newcastle Council members, donors and potential donors to the University of Newcastle (University).

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Section 4 - Interpretation   

(6) In the context of this document:

  1. ‘administrative fees’ include any overheads to process or manage donations, or undertake the activity funded by the donation, including Indirect Cost Recovery charges for donations intended for research, but does not include the actual activity intended to be funded by the donation (see also Indirect Cost Recovery (Research) Guideline).
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Section 5 - Principles  

(7) The University will apply the principles outlined in this Policy to the acceptance and management of donations.

(8) The University will comply with all relevant laws in relation to the acceptance and management of donations.

(9) The acceptance of a donation should not disadvantage the University, nor pose undue financial, legal, or reputational risk to the University

(10) Decisions regarding the acceptance of a donation will be informed by an assessment of the risks associated with the donation or potential donor, and must adhere to the University's Ethical Framework.

(11) The University may accept donations where the donation is aligned with the University's values, mission, strategic direction, and research, academic or educational priorities.

(12) Minimum amounts may be prescribed for donations intended to support a new donor-funded activity.

(13) Donations may have specific purposes and the University will endeavour to honour donor intent for all accepted donations where possible and reasonable, and as permitted by law.

(14) Details of donations accepted by the University will be recorded in line with University privacy policies and managed in accordance with the University's financial management and investment policies.

(15) All reasonable steps will be taken to ensure that donor information is handled confidentially, to the extent provided by law and consistent with the donor's wishes.

(16) No administrative fees will be applied by the University to donations, except where required by law or specified by the terms of the donation.

(17) The University may, at its discretion, allow naming recognition of donations in accordance with relevant delegations of authority. The University reserves the right to remove naming recognition of donors at its discretion.

(18) The University will undertake appropriate consultation with the donor (or their representative) where possible, and to the extent provided by law, to ensure donations are applied in alignment with the donor’s broad intent.

(19) The University may, to the extent permitted by law, return a donation (or part thereof) or take any other action it considers appropriate in the circumstances. This may include, but is not limited to, where an administrative or system error has occurred or where information comes to light to indicate that the donor no longer aligns with the University's values. Any taxation implications arising from the return of a donation are the responsibility of the donor.

(20) The University reserves the right to decline a donation.