Governance weekly for 25th January

The weekly roundup from VANEL on good governance, charity trusteeship and non-profit leadership. News, information, resources and ideas. Complemented by our “aboutgovernance” online discussion space for leaders and trustees and our @aboutgovernance Twitter feed.

New rules start coming into force from 1st February about who can and can’t serve as Trustees on a charity and about disqualification from these roles and from senior management roles.

These are pretty significant in scope, so your charity needs to be mindful of them. You can read a summary briefing about the rules on the BWB website here.

It’s worth thinking about getting confirmation from your current Trustees that they are legally able to serve. Also make sure you’re assessing this as new Trustees apply to join your board and that you refresh the assessment regularly. If you have issues there are ‘waivers’ that can be applied for now. So make sure you understand these new rules.

GDPR is not going to be going away. So I’ll be mentioning it every week I’m sure! If you missed it I wrote a blog article last week that covered this in some detail. Have a read here.

Don’t ignore this. We’re reviewing and implementing changes at VANEL and it’s certainly not a quick task. Make sure you and your board have got this in hand now. All of your staff and volunteers need to be involved in the process. If you’d like to chat with me about the steps you can take and how VANEL might be able to help, just get in touch.

BWB prepare a legal update for charities on a regular basis. It’s very useful and easy to read. Much of it is of course not relevant. Some of it is simply ‘of interest’. But some is very important – you, your board/committee and your senior staff need to keep up to date with legal issues so you don’t fall foul. Have a read of this months issue and follow it yourself.

– There will be an impact on the non-profit sector from Brexit. What that impact will be is complex and uncertain. Everyone knows that there will be a financial impact, but this new blog article from NPC makes the point that there are many other potential impacts from Brexit that charities and the voluntary/community sector should be taking into consideration. Have a read.

– Bit of a shame to include this, but of course trust (or lack of trust) in the charitable sector has raised its ugly head yet again this week.

Here’s the Charity Commissions own research from 2016 into trust in charities.

Don’t think this is remote from us. Any erosion in trust in the sector affects any organisation that fundraises, relies on donations or philanthropy or the goodwill of supporters and volunteers. Let’s make sure we do everything we can in our own organisations to help people trust us

– Finally, don’t forget our Governance training programme. Download the list of courses and dates here, or check out the training calendar here.

As always, more governance news from next week.

Karl Elliott, Development Manager / 01472 287548 – for an overview of our resources and information – for the Trustee Network blog and information – private discussion space for trustees