Privacy policy

Thistle Foundation (Thistle) promises to respect and keep safe any personal data you share with us either directly or indirectly. This also applies to any information about you that we receive from other organisations. The way we collect, store and use personal data are all covered by this privacy policy and we have set out the details below. We aim to be clear when we collect your data and not do anything you wouldn't reasonably expect.

This policy includes:

If you have any questions, comments or suggestions, please get in touch by contacting the Fundraising and Communications team at 13 Queen’s Walk, Edinburgh, EH16 4EA, telephoning 0131 661 3366 or emailing 


What personal data we collect and how we use it

The type and quantity of information we collect and how we use it depends on why you are providing it.


If you support us, for example make a donation, volunteer, register to fundraise or sign up for an event we will usually collect:

Where it is appropriate we may ask for:

We will mainly use your data to:

Whatever it is about Thistle you are interested in, we really want to be as tailored as we can in our communications to you. We also want to speak to you in the way you'd prefer - be it by email, on the phone or in writing. To help us do this, we will sometimes analyse things like what you are interested in and where you live to help us engage with you in a meaningful way. This is important because it cuts down on broad ranging communications and helps us ask for donations or give information based on what we know they would like to hear about.

Direct marketing

With your consent, we will contact you to let you know about the progress we are making at Thistle and to ask for financial and non-financial support. We make it as easy as possible for you to tell us how you want us to communicate, in whichever way that suits you best. Our forms have clear marketing preference questions and we include information on how to request no contact (Opt-Out) from us. If you don’t want to hear from us, that’s absolutely fine.  Just let us know when you provide your data. You can also contact us on 0131 661 3366 or

We do not sell or share personal details to third parties for the purposes of marketing. But, if you attend an event run in partnership with another named organisation, your details may need to be shared. In this situation, we will explain clearly what will happen to your data when you register.


Where we collect information about you from

There are a number of occasions when you may share your personal data with us:

When you give to us directly.

You may give us your information in order to sign up for one of our events, tell us your story, make a donation, purchase a product or communicate with us. Sometimes when you support us, your information is collected by an organisation working for us (e.g. professional fundraising agencies), but we are responsible for your data at all times.

When you give to us indirectly.

Your information may be shared with us by independent event organisers; for example the Edinburgh Marathon Festival or fundraising sites like Just Giving or Virgin Money Giving. These independent third parties will only share your information if you have indicated that you wish to support Thistle and that you have given your consent. You should check the privacy policy of the organisation when you provide your information so that you can see and understand fully how they will process your data.

When you give permission to other organisations to share it.

Depending on your settings or the privacy policies for social media and messaging services like Facebook, WhatsApp or Twitter, you might give us permission to access information from those accounts or services.

You may also provide permission for third party organisations to share your data with other third parties, including charities. You may do this when you buy a product or service, register with a website that runs competitions or register with a comparison site.

The information we get from those services depends on your settings or the responses you give, so you should regularly check them.

When we collect it as you use our website or apps.

Like most websites, we use cookies to help us make our site - and the way you use it - better. Cookies mean that a website will remember you. They're small text files that sites transfer to your computer (or phone or tablet). They make interacting with a website faster and easier - for example by automatically filling your name and address in text fields.

In addition, the type of device you're using to access our website or apps and the settings on that device may provide us with information about your device, including what type of device it is, what specific device you have, what operating system you're using, what your device settings are, and why a crash has happened. Your device manufacturer or operating system provider will have more details about what information your device makes available to us.

Our website uses a cookie for Google Analytics. It does not capture or store personal information, but merely logs the user's IP address which is automatically recognised by the web server. This is used to record the number of visitors to our site and volumes of usage.

For more information about Google Analytics visit the Google Analytics website.
If you do not wish to accept cookies on to your machine you can disable them by adjusting the settings on your browser. However, this will affect the functionality of the Thistle website.


How we keep your data safe and who has access

We ensure that there are appropriate technical controls in place to protect your personal details; for example our online forms are always encrypted and our network is protected and routinely monitored.

We undertake regular reviews of who has access to information that we hold to ensure that your information is only accessible by appropriately trained staff, volunteers and contractors.

We use external companies to collect or process personal data on our behalf.

We do comprehensive checks on these companies before we work with them, and put a contract in place that sets out our expectations and requirements.

We may need to disclose your details if required to the police, regulatory bodies or legal advisors.

We will only ever share your data in other circumstances if we have your explicit and informed consent.


Keeping your information up to date

Where possible, we use publicly available sources to keep your records up to date. We really appreciate it if you let us know if your contact details change.

We fully respect your rights:

You have a right to ask us to stop processing your personal data, and if it's not necessary for the purpose you provided it to us for (e.g. processing your donation or registering you for an event) we will do so.
Contact us on 0131 661 3366 or if you have any concerns.

You also have a right to ask for a copy of the information we hold about you, although we may charge £10 to provide this. If you spot any mistakes, please let us know and we will correct them.

If you wish to access your information, send your request along with a description of the information you want to see and proof of your identity by post to Fundraising and Communications, 13 Queen’s Walk, Edinburgh, EH16 4EA. We do not accept these requests by email but if you have any questions about this process, just drop us a note at


Changes to this policy

We may change this privacy policy from time to time in line with best practice or new regulations or legislation.  If we make any significant changes to the way we treat your personal information, we will make this clear on the Thistle website ( or by contacting you directly.

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