1. Communicating openly, informing people about the organisation and the work it does
Reporting requirements for registered charities (as at May 2012) are summarised in the following downloadable table. The document includes links to more information on the Commission’s requirements and Companies House requirements:
Activity – How Transparent Are You?
A quick quiz to see how well you really involve and inform people:
Equality and Diversity
This is an extremely important topic that underpins all six principles.
The resources for it are therefore in the ‘General’ Resource section.
2. Listening and responding to the views of beneficiaries, service users, supporters and funders and any others with a legitimate interest in the organisation’s work.
Activity – Suggestion Box
You have just emptied your suggestion box and found a range of comments and suggestions from people. Some are named, whilst others are anonymous.
How will you respond to these suggestions?
Hint – if you’re stuck for ideas, download the ‘How Transparent Are You?’ quiz above – you’ll find plenty of ideas in there.
Some Publications on Openness and Accountability
- A Balancing Act – new perspectives on the charity/beneficiary relationship (RS18)
- Transparency and Accountability (RS8)
These are both Charity Commission research reports – see ‘Charity Requirements and Guidance’ / ‘View all guidance’ / ‘Research reports’ section of the Commission’s website www.charity-commission.gov.uk.
3. Handling complaints impartially, effectively and efficiently
Here is a model Complaints policy and procedure suitable for small organisations. You will need to tailor this to suit your needs.
For more detail – The Charity Commission has published ‘Cause for Complaint: How charities manage complaints’, a research report which contains case studies, a checklist and a list of resources which can help you to improve your organisation’s complaints handling. The report is available from the ‘Charity Requirements and Guidance’ / ‘View All Guidance’ section of the Commission’s website www.charity-commission.gov.uk.
4. Considering the organisation’s responsibilities to the wider community e.g. the environmental impact
Your local environmental charity or group will probably be able to help out with simple suggestions that can help reduce your environmental impact (and which may well help save money too!). They will probably also have a model or example environmental policy that you can adapt for your own organisation.
For more detail – The Charity Commission has published ‘Going Green – Charities and environmental responsibility’, a research report which contains examples and a list of resources which can help with reducing your organisation’s environmental impact. The report is available from the ‘Charity Requirements and Guidance’ / ‘View All Guidance’ section of the Commission’s website www.charity-commission.gov.uk.