Choosing the charity path

Kathy Faulks, Support Worker (Group Development) at Voluntary Action Leeds, provides the link to the new Charity Commission guidance on registering a charity.


In my last blog, The road less traveled, I explored alternatives to starting up a new charity. In this blog, I provide advice for people who do indeed intend to establish a new charity.

The first thing to say, and to try to avoid too many headaches for you, is to recommend you attend the course held regularly at Voluntary Action Leeds called “How to register as a charity".

Please please bear in mind that an organisation can only be registered as a charity if:

  • all of the objects of the charity are charitable
  • all of the objects are being actively furthered
  • everything that the organisation does is for the benefit of the public
  • the organisation has an annual income in its last set of annual accounts of £5,000 or above (this does not apply to the new form of charity called a charitable incorporated organisation, CIO)

The Charity Commission has recently provided updated information on setting up and registering a charity. Sam Younger outgoing Chief Executive of the Charity Commission, had this to say recently:

Starting and running a charity is a big step - it requires hard work, patience and commitment. I hope this guidance helps people to decide whether setting up a new charity really is the best way to help. I also hope the easy-to-use format of this guidance will help those who do go on to set up and operate a new charity, by making it much clearer what is expected of them, and what they can expect from us.

In addition, you can find out more from the Charities section of Doing Good Leeds.

Between 1 April 2013 (and I hope nobody applied on that day!) and 31 March 2014, the Charity Commission received 6,661 applications, of whch 4,968 were approved and registered. That is 75%. Don’t be one of the 25%! - book on our "How to register as a charity" course

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