Charity Governance Code and Trustees’ Responsibilities

Good governance supports a charity’s compliance with the law and relevant regulation, as well as promoting a culture where everything works towards fulfilling a charity’s vision. Trustees should be invested in effective governance and the right leadership structures to best service the charity’s ambitions.

The Charity Governance Code helps charities and their trustees develop these high standards of governance and to demonstrate’ exemplary leadership and governance to beneficiaries and other stakeholders.

The Code sets the principles and recommended practice for good governance but is deliberately aspirational. It is not a legal requirement and is intended for use by all charities regardless of size or activities. There are two Codes – one for small charities, and one for larger charities that require an audit.

Seven principles of the Code

  1. Organisational purpose – being clear on the charities aims and ensuring these are delivered.
  2. Leadership – being led by an effective board working in line with charity’s aims.
  3. Integrity – adopting values and creating a culture that helps achieve the charitable purpose.
  4. Decision-making, risk and control – effective delegation, control and risk assessment that is regularly monitored.
  5. Board effectiveness – an appropriate balance of skills, experience, backgrounds from Trustees.
  6. Diversity – an approach to diversity that supports its effectiveness, leadership and decision making.
  7. Openness and accountability – Trustees promoting the charity through being transparent and accountable.

The Charity Commission has previously reported that many charity trustees still ‘fail to understand their duties’ and the Code offers a constructive reminder on the ultimate responsibility of Trustees which is to ensure that affairs of the charity are well run and delivering the charitable outcome expected.

If you feel that the Code could be useful to remind Trustees of their responsibilities in good governance you can download the relevant document on the following link here.

If you would like to discuss this blog further please contact Jack Steer or call 01772 821 021.

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