The Charity Commission has intensified its campaign to raise awareness of core trustee duties and boost take-up of the guidance available to charities.
The Commission has developed a collection of short and engaging five-minute guides on issues ranging from safeguarding people to managing conflicts of interest. The collection serves as a basic toolkit for trustees who are managing the many demands of running a charity.
The regulator hopes this will increasing awareness and use of the guides will boost knowledge and understanding of essential trustee duties as charities face additional challenges due to cost of living pressures.
The Commission’s latest research shows that around 98% of trustees feel “very” or “somewhat” confident in managing or governing their charity but, when questioned on basic role requirements, on average, trustees answered just seven out of 10 questions correctly – a knowledge gap the Commission says could lead to unintentional governance failings.
The five-minute guides cover the following areas:
- Delivering purpose – advice on how to use your charity’s governing document, how to deliver on your charity’s purposes and the law.
- Managing finances – advice on how to ensure your charity’s money is safe, properly used and accounted for.
- Conflicts of interest – advice on how to identify and deal with conflicts of interest in your charity.
- Making decisions – advice on how to make valid trustee decisions that are in your charity’s best interests.
- Reporting information –advice on how and what you need to report to the Commission.
- Safeguarding people – advice on your responsibilities to keep everyone who comes into contact with your charity safe from harm.
- Political activity & campaigning – advice for charities that want to support, or oppose, a change in government policy or the law.
“When approaching difficult decisions, we want trustees to feel certain of the rules in these uncertain times,” said Paul Latham, Director of Communications and Policy at the Charity Commission:
“Our 5-minute guides act as a core syllabus – offering trustees engaging, informative content covering the basics all trustees should know.
With advice readily available, we encourage trustees to refresh their knowledge and fill any gaps so that they can best serve their charities – and those who rely on them.”
The full collection of five-minute guides can be found at: Advice and guidance for Charity Trustees – Getting the most out of being a charity trustee.