Privacy and Cookies

The Christian Institute treats the privacy of its supporters and others very seriously and we take appropriate security measures to safeguard their personal data*. This notice explains how we collect, use, protect and share personal data.

*Personal data means any information that may be used to identify an individual, including, but not limited to, a first and last name, a home or other physical address and an email address or other contact information.

The Christian Institute

The Christian Institute is a charity which advances the Christian faith and also education in accordance with its statement of faith and beliefs.

The Christian Institute is the data controller and processor for the purposes of data shared with us. The Institute is a registered charity in England and Wales (no 1004774) and in Scotland (no SC039220) and a company limited by guarantee (No 2634440). The company is registered in England with its registered office at Wilberforce House, 4 Park Road, Gosforth Business Park, Newcastle upon Tyne, NE12 8DG.


We collect personal information from:

  • our supporters
  • our volunteers
  • our donors when they make a donation
  • those who contact us

We use personal information to:

  • keep in touch with our supporters
  • carry out reasonable administration of our mailings, donations, volunteering and other services
  • manage enquiries from supporters and others, and provide advice to those who seek it
  • improve our communications and develop our work

We also collect data relating to use of our website.

How we obtain personal information

Information provided by the data subject

Those who have joined our mailing list have provided us with their personal data. In most cases, this has been by filling in and returning a post card “Keep me informed: please add me to your mailing list”, or by joining our mailing list via our website. Whichever mechanism is used, a person has the choice of joining our post mailing list, our email mailing list, or both. The information provided includes:

  • name and title
  • address including postcode, and/or
  • email address

Some of our supporters may also provide:

  • a telephone number
  • the name of their church or denomination
  • an indication of whether they are a church leader or a student

Those who are on our mailing list are categorised as our supporters. By signing up to receive our mailings, our supporters have regular contact with us.

We also collect the following information:

  • amount and frequency (if giving regularly) of donations, gift aid status, and partial bank details (but not sufficient to effect a transaction)
  • information about our relationship with supporters
  • information provided by those who contact us for advice or with enquiries

Information we get from other sources

We sometimes use legal publicly available sources to obtain information. For example:

  • a church website to obtain the contact details for a minister who we may wish to contact with a view to holding a public meeting in his church
  • obtain from public directories the telephone number for a supporter if we have cause to contact them and do not already have a number
  • to ensure that a supporter’s contact details are up to date
  • to conduct appropriate due diligence to ensure there is no reputational or financial risk to accepting a particular donation

How we use personal information

We use personal information to:

  • administer mailings to our supporters, to inform them to pray and act
  • manage enquiries from supporters and those who contact us, and keep a record of contact and correspondence
  • operate our advice service and maintain appropriate records
  • manage our volunteers
  • administer donations, thank donors, and maintain our own accounts and records
  • plan meetings and events to keep our supporters and others informed
  • make an occasional live telephone call to a supporter for specific time-sensitive purposes
  • improve our communications, campaigns and services

We endeavour to keep personal information up to date. This includes monitoring returned mail to let us know if a person no longer lives at the address we hold for them. We also use public sources to make sure we do not send communications to the wrong place or person.

We occasionally run a petition on our website for the purpose of raising support for a particular issue. Petition entries are not published or shared with a third party unless otherwise stated. Unless a person subsequently asks us to remove their petition entry, we keep a record of this entry for verification purposes until the petition closes, but do not otherwise process this data. At the conclusion of the petition, we destroy the petition data using secure means. If a person also signs up to receive emails from us, then their personal information will be processed for the purposes of sending them the emails they have requested.

If a person has applied to work for us, their personal information will only be used for the purposes of recruitment and processing their application. Applicant information is kept for six months after completion of the recruitment process.

The exterior of our office is monitored by CCTV for security reasons. All recordings are destroyed after three months.

Our responsibilities

  • We only send email mailings about our work and issues to those who have given their consent to us to do so. However, a person can change their mind at any time and withdraw their consent. Every email has a link to help the recipient unsubscribe if they wish to stop receiving emails.
  • In all other cases the law allows us to hold and process the personal information of supporters and others if it is in our legitimate interests to do so. We rely on our legitimate interests to keep our supporters’ details and maintain our mailing list, to write to those who have indicated their wish to receive our postal mailings, to process and administer our donations, provide an advice service to those who seek it, and to keep appropriate records. Relying on our legitimate interests mean that we carry out an exercise to check that we will not cause harm to the data subject by processing their data, that the processing is not overly intrusive and that we will only process data in a way which is described in this privacy notice. Our legitimate interests involve furthering our charitable objects of advancing the Christian faith and education though providing information and advice and providing the service our supporters might reasonably expect.
  • We may on occasions use the church or denominational information provided by some of our supporters, including whether they are a church leader, to inform our work. Our legitimate interests in doing this include exercising a general awareness that some of our publications are likely to be appropriate to the broad demographic of our supporters, and informing our development work, e.g. where we might be able to hold a particular supporter meeting. In so far as such church details are special category data, we also rely on our legitimate activities as a not for profit body with a religious aim.
  • We also rely upon our legitimate interests to telephone our supporters if necessary. This may occasionally involve obtaining a telephone number from publicly available sources in the terms set out above. We will not telephone anyone who subscribes to the Telephone Preference Service (TPS) unless they have consented. We never ask for donations on the phone.

Advice service

Occasionally, we are contacted by parents who seek advice in relation to issues which might relate to their children. Wherever possible, we refer to their children in anonymous terms.

In the course of providing advice, it may sometimes be necessary to process special category data in order to establish, exercise or defend legal claims.


We keep personal information secure with appropriate measures in place to attempt to protect against the loss, misuse, and alteration of personal information.

We use secure server software to encrypt financial and personal information we collect online. However, the transmission of data across the internet is not completely secure. We cannot guarantee that loss, misuse or alteration of data will not occur whilst data is being transferred.

Sharing information

We will not share the personal information we hold with another organisation for their own purposes and we will never sell personal information for any reason whatsoever.

There may be occasions where it is necessary to share personal information where it is required by law or to respond to any legal or regulatory action. We will provide information to HMRC on gift aided donations since we have a legal obligation to provide this information.

There are also a few situations where our legitimate interests involve us sharing some supporter information with service providers who are contracted to fulfil specific services for us. For example, we use a mailing house to send our post and the email service MailChimp to deliver to our supporters the emails they have signed up to receive. However, we remain in control of the information and the company is not allowed to do anything with the information other than what we have requested. The service also enables us to gather statistics around email opening and clicks using industry standard technologies including gifs to help us monitor and improve our mailings (see:

Many of our donations are processed through Charity Aid Foundation.

Worldwide transfer of data

If it is ever desirable to transfer data outside of the EEA, we ensure that robust data-sharing agreements are in place. For example, MailChimp hosts its data in the US, but it has certified its compliance with the EU-US Privacy Shield Framework.

How long we keep data

We keep information in line with our data retention policy.

Our relationship with our supporters and donors is generally long term, so we keep their personal information for as long as we need it to maintain that relationship or keeping the information is otherwise necessary. We take into account our need to meet any legal, statutory and regulatory obligations. These reasons vary from one piece of information to another. For example, we keep information relating to donations and gift aid for seven years.

If a supporter unsubscribes from our emails they are removed from our mailing list. Relying upon legitimate interest, a list of unsubscribed email addresses may be kept to ensure that we do not send emails to those who no longer wish to receive them.

Our need to use personal information is assessed on a regular basis and we dispose of data securely, using specialist companies to do this work for us if necessary.


What are cookies?

Cookies are small text files that are downloaded to a user’s device when they visit a website.

Why do we use cookies?

We use cookies for the operation, security, monitoring and improvement of our website.
Some cookies are retained in a user’s browser for only as long as they visit our website, while others may persist for a longer specified or unspecified period.

Summary of cookies we use

Cookie type Name(s) Purpose
Strictly Necessary PHPSESSID
Used to enable the basic functioning of our website.
Cookie consent ci_cookie_consent Used to remember a visitor’s acceptance of our cookie notice.
Analytics (Google) _ga
Used to collect information about how visitors use our Website. We use them in an anonymised form, including information to compile reports and to help us improve the website. The cookies collect information about the number of visitors to the website, where visitors have come to the website from and the pages they visited.

Google’s Privacy Policy

In the course of a person’s visit to our website third-parties providing services on our website or having content embedded in our website may also place cookies on a user’s device to enable the functionality of their services and for their own purposes. We do not control how these third parties use cookies so our website users should refer to the third party’s own privacy and cookie policy. The table below details the third parties we have identified who may place cookies on a user’s device.

Facebook We enable users to follow our Facebook Page from our website. To provide this service Facebook places cookies on a user’s device for advertising purposes. If a user visits our site while logged-in to Facebook, they may place further cookies on a user’s device.

Facebook’s Privacy Policy

YouTube (Google) We embed videos from our official YouTube Channel.

Google’s Privacy Policy

Instagram We enable users to follow our Instagram Channel from our website.

Instagram’s Privacy Policy

Twitter We enable users to follow our Twitter Feed from our website.

Twitter’s Privacy Policy

DoubleClick (Google) As we use services from Google, they may also place cookies on a user’s device for targeting advertising across the web.

Google’s Privacy Policy

How do I change my cookie settings?

Our website users can delete cookies or instruct their web browser to delete or refuse cookies. However, if a website user deletes cookies or refuses to accept them, they might not be able to use all of the features we offer, they may not be able to store their preferences, and some of our website pages might not display properly.

To find out more about cookies, including how to see what cookies have been set and how to manage and delete them, visit

IP Addresses

We collect the request made by a user’s browser to the server hosting this website. This includes the IP address, the date and time of connection and the page selected. We have legitimate interests in using this information to ensure the security of our website, for system administration, and to inform improvements to the website. This information is retained only for a short period of time.

Data Subject Rights

Under data protection law, a person has the following rights in relation to their personal data:

Right to access

Subject to some exemptions, the right to access a copy of the personal information that we hold about them.

Right to correct

The right to obtain from us the rectification of inaccurate or incomplete personal information we hold concerning them.

Right to erase

The right to ask us to erase their personal information in certain circumstances.

Right to restriction of processing

The right to ask us to restrict the processing of their personal information in certain circumstances.

Right to object

The right to object to our use of their personal information where we use it on the basis of our legitimate interests. We shall no longer process a person’s personal information unless we can demonstrate compelling legitimate grounds for the processing. A person also has the right to object to processing of their personal information for direct marketing purposes.

Right to request transfer

The right to request transfer of their personal information in a structured, commonly used, machine-readable format. This right only applies to automated information where the processing is based on consent or under a contract.

Right to withdraw consent

The right to withdraw consent at any time where we are relying on consent to process the person’s personal data. However, this will not affect the lawfulness of any processing carried out before the withdrawal of consent.

More information about these rights can be found on the website of the Information Commissioner’s Office.

Accuracy of personal information

We aim to keep our information about our supporters and those who contact us accurate as possible. If a person wishes to access, review or change the information supplied to us, they can contact us as set out below.

Contact us

To make enquiries in relation to this privacy notice, exercise any of the above rights, or to make a complaint about our use of your personal information, please contact our Head of Operations at or write to him at The Christian Institute, Wilberforce House, 4 Park Road, Gosforth Business Park, Newcastle upon Tyne, NE12 8DG.

If you are not satisfied with the way we deal with your complaint, you have the right to refer it to the Information Commissioner’s Office. You are also entitled to make a complaint to the Information Commissioner’s Office without first referring it to us.


We keep our privacy and cookies notice under regular review. This notice was last updated on 25 May 2018.