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28th May 2022
Mark Proctor senior partner at Lovewell Blake

A move to provide better support for trustees of charities by the body which regulates them has been welcomed as ‘a significant step forward’ by one of the region’s leading charity experts.

Plans announced by The Charity Commission to launch an online trustee portal later this year will ‘improve engagement and boost support for individuals who volunteer their time and skills to guide charities’, according to Mark Proctor, who leads the specialist Charity team at chartered accountants Lovewell Blake.

The Commission’s plans, announced earlier this month, aim to ‘move away from communicating solely with organisations, to engaging with individual trustees’.

“This is a significant step forward which will dramatically improve engagement with trustees and give them an extra level of support, which will be welcomed by trustees” said Mr Proctor.

“Charity trustees are people who volunteer their time and their valuable expertise, taking on an important and responsible role for no reward other than knowing that what they do enables charities to exist and thrive.  So it is important that the Charity Commission is recognising that it should be providing a better level of support on an individual basis.”

The Charity Commission announced its plans to enhance trustees support in its 2022-23 business plan.  The Commission said, “We will seek out a more personalised relationship with trustees, tailoring our communications and enabling trustees to share appropriate and timely information about themselves and their charities with us. 

“In doing so, we will together drive up compliance with regulatory requirements and increase transparency, improving the sector’s accountability to the public.”

Earlier this month more than two dozen trustees of local charities took part in the first of a series of Trustee Masterclasses run by Lovewell Blake’s specialist Charity team, aimed at helping the region’s charities be more effective, more accountable and better managed.

The first masterclass was aimed at helping trustees understand their role and build more effective charity boards.  Future masterclasses will cover topics such as good financial management, improving success in fundraising, and managing risks including fraud.

Full details about the series of free masterclasses can be found at www.lovewell-blake.co.uk/events.