Last night, Oxford City Council agreed to set up an Oxford Lottery to raise money for voluntary and community sector groups in the city.
The Oxford Lottery will be an online lottery. Based on the experience of other councils who run online lotteries, the council expects the Oxford Lottery to raise at least £60,000 a year for local good causes.
Oxford Lottery players will be able to nominate their favourite local good causes as beneficiaries from the lottery, or to support a general fund. Voluntary and community groups will also be able to sign themselves up as potential beneficiaries of the general fund. Each local good cause supported by the Oxford Lottery will have their own page within the lottery website.
The council expects that the Oxford Lottery will only be available online and that players will only be able to buy tickets using direct debit or payment cards.
The council will now develop a selection process for local good causes. It will also find an external lottery manager to run the Oxford Lottery, apply for a licence from the Gambling Commission, and launch the lottery for good causes and for players. This process is expected to take six months.
Councillor Susan Brown, Board Member for Customer and Corporate Services, said:
“Although the council gives more than £1.4 million a year to voluntary and community groups, we can’t meet demand for grants. Last year, we received applications for three times the amount of money we had available. The Oxford Lottery is a great opportunity to raise money for good causes in the city, and lottery players will be able to nominate their own favourite groups to receive money from the lottery. We believe the Oxford Lottery will be able to raise at least £60,000 a year for good causes working in the city.”