A recent report published by the Charity Commission highlights some key issues for charities:

1. To operate in the public benefit is an ongoing requirement for all charities:

  • the charity commission is actively monitoring this issue
  • membership charities in particular, will need to show how their activities benefit those outside their membership
  • charity trustees should be ready to show how they are operating in the public benefit

2. A central library of policies and procedures by an umbrella body is a useful resource, but does not remove the responsibility of each individual charity:

  • a charity must ‘operate independently and ensure it adapts and implements the required policies for its particular circumstances’
  • a policy should be understood and embedded in the culture of the charity and not just be a tick box exercise

3. Charities must ensure appropriate accountability to people interested in their charity:

  • where appropriate members should be made aware of key policies of the charity
  • the benefits of having complaints procedures should be considered
  • any such procedures need to be easy to access and easy to follow

For more details of how these points were applied in practice by the Commission in its registration and monitoring exercise in respect of various groups making up the Plymouth Brethren Church, find out more here.

If you need advice reviewing the issues raised in this article or any other issue get in touch either by telephone 01726 74433 or email enquiries@stephens-scown.co.uk