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The Charity Commission Focuses on Charities Not Reaching Their Potential

View profile for Julia Seary
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The Chair of the CC, Baroness Stowell, yesterday spoke of the need for charities to continue to strive to live up to public expectations so that the sector can be a much-needed source of hope, identity and pride. 

The Charity Commission is focused on understanding why some charities are not reaching their potential as agents of social empowerment and positive change and has set itself a new purpose: ‘to help ensure charity collectively can thrive and inspire trust, so that people can change lives and strengthen society’. This purpose is at the heart of a new strategy that comes into effect next month.

The strategy sets out five new strategic priorities:

  • to hold charities to account
  • to deal with wrongdoing and harm
  • to give charities the tools they need to succeed
  • to inform public choice
  • to keep charity relevant to today’s world

Baroness Stowell spoke of how we can expect to see a changed, more confident and purpose-driven Charity Commission which is unafraid to use its voice and authority to encourage behaviour and conditions that help charities thrive. This includes publishing new guidance for charities that have close relationships with non-charitable organisations to ensure that all of a charity’s decisions are motivated by the best interests of its beneficiaries and never captured by uncharitable interests.   

Stowell was clear that while the primary function of the guidance is to advise trustees, it will also help the Charity Commission hold people to account when they misuse or mishandle relationships that involve charities – trustees are advised to heed the sentiment of the Chair’s words and ensure that their Boards act appropriately and in accordance with regulation and guidance at all times.

Roythornes' Charities team exists as a grouping of charity law practitioners, property and trust lawyers and probate professionals supported by a full-service company and commercial team.