Benefits of ICSA Membership

The ICSA provides support and information for the Charity Shop sector that is not available anywhere else. ICSA members are charities that are registered with the Charities Regulator and operating in Ireland. So join us so that we can help you to grow your business for the benefit of communities nationwide.

Click here to view our Vision, Mission and Values

Conditions of membership

You must be a charity registered with the Charities Regulator based in Ireland that operates charity shop(s) to raise funds for their objectives. Your shop(s) must be run directly by the charity and all proceeds must go towards your charity's purpose.

You must comply with and sign up to the Code of Charity Retailing.

Complete an ONLINE APPLICATION FORM here to start the process

What we do

The Code of Charity Retailing was developed by members for members, who are all signed up to the Code and it is a condition of membership for all charities who wish to join the ICSA. Click here for more information and the full text of the Code.

The Code of Charity Retailing is an assurance to our customers and donors that all ICSA members are operating to the standards set out in the Code.
The aims of the Code are:

  • To promote good practice and high standards in charity retailing
  • To promote public confidence in, and support for, charity shops
  • To increase donations to charity shops, both directly into shops and through house-to-house collections.
  • To get positive publicity for charity shops
  • To promote awareness of legitimate charity shops and to help stamp out dishonest and bogus activities

Media coverage, public awareness and lobbying

The ICSA is now recognised by the media as the umbrella group for charity shops and this generates coverage for our sector.

We operate an online reporting form to enable members of the public to send us details of any suspected bogus/unregistered activity. This is supported by the Gardai. More info on this link

We launched our first Choose Charity Shops 1st campaign in March 2013. This was a public awareness campaign to encourage donations directly to ICSA member shops. Campaign materials and a press release were provided to members to support the campaign.

We are actively involved with the Charities Regulator in highlighting the issues facing our sector.

We are actively involved in the Reuse Month, launched in October 2016 and now an annual event. In 2016 the ICSA featured in a cinema advert sponsored by the Regional Waste Authorities.

Member Services

We provide practical help on how to run your shop through the dedicated members' area of the website and the Secretary is available to provide information and resources.

Website and facebook

Our website is a channel for members of the public to find out about charity shops, where to donate and where to buy. 75% of visitors want a find a charity shop and we only list ICSA members' shops. Website statistics for 2017:

  • 65,000 visitors
  • Over 115,000 pages viewed
  • 75% of visitors are seeking information on specific charity shops

The exclusive members' area is a forum for members only where all information about the ICSA and members' activities can be found. There is also information to help you to run your shop and other useful links. Username and password are provided once you become a member.

We have a very active ICSA facebook page which you can use to promote your shop and your charity's events.

Talking Shop - networking

We hold informal members meetings where you can meet people from other charities over a cup of coffee and there is plenty of opportunity for open discussion. There is an outside speaker/workshop on a relevant topic e.g. social media and charity shops, security etc. The meetings are an excellent forum for members to network with other members.

Our Members' Meeting in October 2017 was in Portlaoise with 3 speakers, round table discussions, a social media workshop and the presentation of our Members' Awards for Volunteer of the Year, Shop Manager of the Year and Shop Window of the Year. 

Benchmarking Survey

The latest Benchmarking survey is available online in the members' area of the website. This annual survey provides an industry norm against which individual charities can measure their own performance.

Conference 2016

We held a very successful Conference in October 2016. Our keynote speaker was Duncan Stewart and other speakers were David Murphy, RTE, John Farrelly, CEO The Charities Regulator, Robin Osterley, CEO The Charity Retail Association and Andrew Dickie, HR specialist.

The highlight of the Conference was our Members' Awards for the Martin Kenny Volunteer of the Year, Shop Manager of the Year and Shop Window of the Year.

Training and Development for your shops

We run regular workshops on issues that face charity shops (Health and Safety and Security) or subjects that help you in the running of your shop; Antiques Awareness training, social media training, VM training.

ICSA Member Window Sticker

Membership fee

The fee depends on how many shops you have.
1 shop - €165 per year
2-5 shops - €140 per shop per year
6-10 shops €120 per shop per year
11-24 shops €110 per shop per year
25+ shops €2,750 flat rate per year
The membership year runs from January to December, and pro-rata if you join during the year.
Please contact secretary@icsa.ie for more information

Conditions of membership

You must be a charity registered with the Charities Regulator based in Ireland that operates charity shops to raise funds for their objectives. Your shop(s) must be run directly by the charity and all proceeds must go towards your charity's purpose.

You must comply with and sign up to the Code of Charity Retailing.

Complete an ONLINE APPLICATION FORM here to start the process.

Join us now and make the best value-for-money investment for your charity this year.

You will also become a member of Retail Excellence through your membership of the ICSA. The ICSA has joined RE to add to our credibility as legitimate charity shop operators and also to benefit from the information and networking opportunities available to us. One of these is access to the members’ area of the Retail Excellence website with useful information to help you in running your shop(s) including HR templates, training videos, advice and trading information. 

CRNI

You will also become a member of Community Reuse Network Ireland through your membership of the ICSA. Their vision is for an Ireland where the word ‘waste’ doesn’t exist and where our entire community benefits from the social, environmental and economic value of all reusable resources.

The ICSA is a member of CRNI as textile reuse through charity shops is a substantial reuse activity and contributes to the circular economy.