11 Mar 2019
What to expect from the Charity Commission over the next five years
Speaking at the
Charity Commission's annual public meeting in Manchester on 5
March, the Commission's Chief Executive and Chair conveyed a
message to the sector about what to expect from its regulator over
the next five years.
The Commission's Chief Executive, Helen Stephenson made it clear
that the regulator's capacity is still on a "knife edge", after
experiencing the "double whammy" of funding cuts and increasing
demand for its services. The Commission currently receives on
average 260 emails or phone calls from customers per day.
However, plans to address this through a consultation on whether
the Commission should charge charities for regulation are on hold
because the government is preoccupied with Brexit. Last year the
government gave the Commission an additional £5m per year, until a
consultation on charging charities could come about, which has
enabled the regulator to recruit additional staff.
Despite the challenges, Stephenson outlined the key points from
statement of strategic intent last year and said: "Work is
currently underway translating all of these objectives into clear
and measurable delivery plans. It's not a heroic strategy, but it's
an ambitious one." She added that the Commission is "implementing
it in a challenging time for us".
She said the Commission is focused on delivering on the
refreshed aims set out in last year's statement. "We want to
set out our stall to the charity sector about the way in which we
are going to develop in the next five years," Stephenson said.
So, what can charities expect from the Commission?
Both Stephenson and the Commission's chair, Baroness Stowell,
said that the Commission will be "louder", and charities can expect
to hear the regulator speaking up more.
Baroness Stowell told charities to expect to see a more
confident Commission. A Commission that is unafraid to use its
voice and authority to encourage behaviour and conditions that help
The Commission also plans to improve access to data and improve
content so that it's engaging and useful for trustees.
You can read Baroness Stowell's speech here
Chair's speech to the Charity Commission Annual Public