“Charities spend too much money on admin and salaries, and not enough helping the people who really need the cash!”
This allegation is all too familiar to charities throughout the UK and who can blame the general public for being so sceptical? Now that the not-for-profit sector is gaining an increasingly high profile, charities are under growing pressure to justify the money they spend and the results they achieve. Even once invulnerable commercial institutions now face accusations of, at best, inefficiency and, at worst, corruption, and charities can expect to receive a similar degree of scrutiny in the future. The public has high expectations of charities and a failure to meet these expectations might have dire consequences. Charity Trustees must therefore, be able to provide evidence of the probity and worth of their organisations.
“If we are to continue to enjoy public support we need to be demonstrably accountable to the public” Geraldine Peacock, Chief Executive of Guide Dogs for the Blind, quoted in Third Sector, June 2002
Z/Yen Limited, the UK’s leading risk reward managers and strategy experts in the not-for-profit sector, has been researching firstly, the ways and means available to charities by which they may provide evidence of their worth and secondly, the optimum governance structures to assist with this process. Equipped with our findings, we are inviting Chief Executives, Directors and Trustees of charities to attend a high level, interactive seminar and discussion forum, presented in association with HSBC Charity Fund Managers, during which these principles and methodologies can be discussed. Drawing on the case studies of leading charities including WWF-UK and the British Red Cross, Z/Yen will provide both practical knowledge and a contribution to the debate on the future for charity governance.
“Charities need to set directions through effective governance, agree the path through strategic planning and use risk management to make sure they don’t go astray.” Ian Harris, Director, Z/Yen Limited
The seminar is designed to be highly participative with well over an hour scheduled for discussion. Attendees should gain a clear understanding of the changing nature of charity governance and direction on how their charity may provide clear evidence of its effectiveness and probity.
Z/Yen’s work with charities includes strategic planning, information and fundraising strategies, support with monitoring and evaluation work, planning, specification, business process review, implementation and evaluation of systems. Clients include The British Heart Foundation, Cancer Research UK, British Red Cross, Barnardo’s, The Children's Society, BEN, Broadcasting Support Services and Women’s Royal Voluntary Service.
HSBC is one of the UK’s top five charity fund managers with over 500 charity clients. Through its experienced and specialised team of professionals, HSBC Charity Fund Managers offers bespoke investment solutions for charities of all types and sizes. Its comprehensive range of investment service includes common investment funds, a managed funds portfolio service and full discretionary management of segregated portfolios. HSBC Charity Fund Managers also has an advisory service, and experience of SRI and ethically constrained portfolios.
Gridlock, Chaos or Productive Accountability?
Linking “evidence of worth” to effective governance
Wednesday 9 October 2002
Venue: HSBC Bank, 27-32 Poultry, London EC2 P2BX
8.45 Registration and Coffee
9.00 Welcome and introduction from the Chairman
Michael Robertson, Director, Business Development, HSBC Charity Fund Managers
9.10 Case Study: “Mixing chalk and cheese?” How WWF and HSBC are working together in a new type of partnership
HSBC and WWF, along with BGCI and Earthwatch, have embarked on an ambitious partnership called “Investing in Nature” This session examines the governance structures put in place to manage the relationship between two diverse organisations and how they are developing the partnership together.
Nicky Bishop, Director of Fundraising, WWF-UK and Amanda Coombes, Manager, HSBC in the Community, HSBC Holdings plc
9.45 Make hay while the sun shines OR save for a rainy day
One of the most important decisions facing charity trustees is balancing current and future needs against current and future resources. Having a proper balance can make the difference between ensuring a healthy future, enduring a slow decline or spinning the wheels. This session reviews current practices and historic behaviours before setting out principles that can help people to make better choices about when to hold back and when to go forward.
Michael Mainelli, Director, Z/Yen Limited
10.20 Coffee Break
10.35 Case Study: Making the British Red Cross more accountable by developing new governance structures
The British Red Cross has embarked on a mission to place accountability to beneficiaries, volunteers and the public at the heart of the organisation. This practical presentation looks at the challenges it has faced in changing its approach to governance, seeking to obtain support from all levels of the organisation and putting structures in place that will enable it to assess the impact of the work it does.
Mike Adamson, Director Strategy and Planning, British Red Cross Society
11.10 Case Study: Another perspective borne of different objectives
The Joseph Rowntree Foundation is one of the largest independent social policy research and development charities in the UK. This session will compare and contrast trustee governance, evaluation of performance and financial policy issues of the previous case studies detailed above, as well as raising some new points based on the experience of a charity dedicated to helping the poor and the excluded.
Michael Sturge, Deputy Director, Joseph Rowntree Foundation
11.45 Facilitated discussion: Having heard what others have to say, this is your opportunity to break into groups with your peers to discuss the practical issues you are facing as you strive to ensure accountability and transparency in the governance of your organisation.
12.45 Closing remarks from the Chairman
2.30 Close of Seminar