New regulations issued in April 2015 state that anyone wishing to fundraise in Dubai needs to get prior approval from the Islamic Affairs and Charitable Activities Department (IACAD) through one of its registered charities. You can download the necessary form (correct as of May 2015) here.
Download the IACAD Donation Permit Form.
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Q: Is written approval necessary for any charitable activity in Dubai regardless of its size?
A: Any fundraising activity, whether it is money or items, and the advertising for it should have a prior approval through charity organisations licensed by IACAD, which can be found on our website (www.iacad.gov.ae) The registration through the charity organisations will guarantee to speed up and facilitate the application process.
Q: For example, does a person who wants to raise charity for a cause, say by running a marathon, need to obtain this approval?
A: Yes, a person needs to get this approval by getting in touch with one of the licensed organisations. This will guarantee that the money is collected and delivered in the right way.
Q: What are the channels for submitting the application?
A: The application can be submitted on several platforms including through IACAD’s charity portal, ‘Emirates Charity’, (www.iacad.gov.ae), smart App, ‘Emirates Charity’, or by sending an email to firstname.lastname@example.org .
Q: Does it cost anything to get the approval?
A: No, it is free of charge.
Q: What is the time period from applying to receiving Approval?
A: We need to give a response within two weeks but we usually respond within three working days if there is no missing information in the application.