Find the answers to frequently asked questions about donating to the ICRC, including where your money goes, earmarking, online donations, tax and privacy.
The ICRC undertakes to allocate your donation in its entirety to the operation that you have chosen. The cost of the operational support provided by Geneva headquarters to the field delegations is calculated at 6.5% of the delegation's expenditure.
In other words, from a donation of 100 Swiss francs, 93.50 francs are used directly to finance our field operations to protect and assist people affected by armed conflict and other violence.
There is no agreed-upon definition of the concept of administrative costs for international organizations. The ICRC has therefore taken the US fiscal and accounting criteria applicable to international organizations and non-governmental organizations (NGOs) as its yardstick.
In 2009, for example, the ICRC's administrative costs (calculated using the method mentioned above) represented 9.69% of total operational expenditure. The costs considered to be "administrative" are the cost of the headquarters units, i.e. the president's office, the directorate, human resources, fundraising, finance and administration, information systems and archives. Note: administrative costs do not affect the way in which your donation is used – it will be allocated directly to the field operation of your choice.
If you specify a sphere of activity or programme which is not listed, the ICRC reserves the right to assign your donation to an operation of its own choosing.
In addition, we cannot accept donations for a specific school, village or group of individuals. Your donation will help to meet all the needs in the conflict zone specified, but your choice is restricted to a country or type of activity. Experience has shown that the more restrictive the earmarking policy (tying donations to a particular area, category of person, etc.), the more limited the ICRC's operational flexibility, to the detriment of the people we are trying to help, and additional administration is also involved.