Monday, 24 October 2016

Charities against fraud: new site launches in Fraud Awareness Week


The Charity Commission, in collaboration with members of the Charity Sector Counter Fraud Group, has today launched www.charitiesagainstfraud.org.uk, a new website dedicated to helping charities in the fight against fraud. It provides an initial point of reference for trustees, staff and volunteers who want to find out more about tackling fraud in their charity, and includes guidance, top tips, case studies, as well as signposting users to other organisations tackling charity fraud.
The launch of the new website marks the start of Charity Fraud Awareness Week (24-28 October). According to the National Crime Agency, ‘individuals, the private sector and the charity sector lose billions of pounds each year to fraud’. The campaign - led by the Commission and the Fraud Advisory Panel - will be reminding charities how to limit their fraud risk. It aims to ensure that trustees and charity staff can recognise the warning signs of fraud and shape an effective and proportionate response.
Top tips to reduce your charity’s vulnerability to fraud include:
  1. Develop a strong counter fraud culture where staff are encouraged to play their part in the fight against fraud.
  2. Have in place and robustly apply internal financial controls.
  3. Encourage staff to voice concerns.
  4. Have a fraud response plan so that everyone knows what to do and when - stay calm but act quickly when incidents do occur.
  5. Ensure you report incidents to Action Fraud and to the Commission, via the dedicated reporting facility: RSI@charitycommission.gsi.gov.uk.

David Kirk, Chairman of the Fraud Advisory Panel, commented:

Fraud presents a serious threat to every organisation but unfortunately charities can be particularly vulnerable due to the high number of financial transactions they undertake. Fraud can manifest itself in many different forms and is constantly evolving - which is why we are urging everyone working with charities and not-for-profit organisations to join together and stop fraud against charities. Charity staff and trustees must stay alert to the risks and understand how to manage them.

Diana Isiye, Head of Counter Fraud at Oxfam GB said:

We know that charities can fall victim to fraud. Working together to encourage trustees and staff to start a conversation about fraud and share their experiences is a crucial way to ensure the sector is better equipped to meet the growing challenge posed by fraud.

Michelle Russell, Director of Investigations Monitoring and Enforcement at the Charity Commission added:

Fraud can thrive in an environment of weak governance and poor financial management, so we are reminding charity staff and trustees, as part of Charity Fraud Awareness Week, to seek out the good practice guidance that is widely available and to review their charity’s financial controls and procedures. We’re keen to work closely with charities to improve their fraud resilience and hope that the new site will enable charities to access and learn from the best practice that’s already out there.
Charity Fraud Awareness Week will conclude with the second National Charity Fraud Conference in London on 28 October, which will include panel discussions and presentations from Michelle Russell and Commission board member, Mike Ashley. Two regional events will follow in December and January for those not able to attend Friday’s conference. The Fraud Advisory Panel and the Commission will also be producing a conference report, summarising issues and conclusions and reminding trustees to maintain a counter-fraud focus.
If you’d like to get involved and help spread the word, a supporter’s pack is available and you can follow #CharityFraud on Twitter for live updates.
(Source: Charity Commission)

Thursday, 20 October 2016

Improving regulatory compliance - reporting serious incidents

The Charity Commission the independent regulator of charities in England and Wales, has today launched a 3 month public consultation on its proposed updated guidance for charities ‘What to do if something goes wrong: reporting serious incidents’.
Serious incident reporting is an important regulatory compliance tool for the Commission, with casework continuing to find serious incidents that should have been reported but were not. The Commission is also asked on a regular basis by charities for advice on what to report, how and when.
With this updated guidance, it aims to help charities identify what to report and when. Listing the most common types of incidents, the guidance explains what should be reported to the Commission (as well as to the police and other regulators). New checklists and a table of examples of what, and what not, to report to the Commission are included.
The Commission reminds trustees that they must act quickly and responsibly when problems do occur, including by making a serious incident report and taking steps to avoid a similar problem occurring in the future. Serious incident reports should be made promptly to the Commission via the dedicated email facility: RSI@charitycommission.gsi.gov.uk
The Commission specifically welcomes comments on the draft guidance from trustees, charity staff and volunteers, professional advisers, and those with an interest in the charity sector.
The full consultation questions and details on how to respond are published on GOV.UK.

Michelle Russell, Director of Investigations, Monitoring and Enforcement said:

We welcome comments from across the charity sector and a range of stakeholders on the proposed updates to the guidance.
We hope that that this improved guidance will raise awareness of the need to report serious incidents and help trustees identify how and when to make a report to the Commission. Our advice is - if in doubt, report it and take steps to prevent problems happening again.
(Source: Charity Commission) 


PAVO TRAINING SEPTEMBER - NOVEMBER 2016

Have you seen PAVO's Training Programme for September - November 2016?

Still plenty of courses to book onto.

Go to:http:
//www.pavo.org.uk/fileadmin/Docs/Training/Training_course_list_for_website__Sept_-_Nov_2016_.pdf

Tuesday, 18 October 2016

Reminder: you may only have 2 weeks to file your accounts on time

The Charity Commission is today reminding charities with a financial year ending 31 December that they have less than 2 weeks to file their annual return or accounts for 2015 before the 31 October deadline.
As of close of play on Friday 14 October, 1,579 charities with a financial year ending 31 December 2015 hadn’t yet filed their accounts or annual return and need to do by 31 October. A total of 9,114 charities on the register are in default and are not complying with their legal filing obligations.
Once a charity has submitted its documents to us, they are published on our register of charities and are readily available for all members of the public to view. Filing your accounts and annual report is a great opportunity to tell your story and demonstrate to your generous supporters the impact your charity has had over the past year, as well as your plans for the upcoming year.
Trustees have a legal obligation to submit these documents and the failure to file may be an indicator of wider poor governance issues within the charity. Failing to file, or filing late, can affect your charity’s reputation as well as jeopardise public trust in charities more generally. The Commission takes failure to file very seriously and will take action where necessary.
Use these top tips from the Commission to avoid making mistakes and falling into default with your accounting and reporting requirements:
  1. Know what you need to submit and when. You have 10 months from the end of their financial year to do this and what you need to submit depends on your annual income:
    • under £10,000 - income and expenditure figures via the annual return/update
    • £10,001 - £25,000 - annual return form
    • £25,001 and over - annual return, accounts, independent examiners report/audit and TAR
    • all CIOs - annual return, accounts, (independent examiners report/audit and TAR for incomes over £25,000)
  2. Do not wait until you approach the 10 month deadline; when you have the documents, submit them.
  3. The easiest and quickest way to file your annual information is using the online services. This also means your charity’s profile will be updated overnight. There is a video tutorial that shows you how to do this on GOV.UK and we offer technical support via a telephone helpline which is open from 9am to midday Monday to Friday on 0300 066 9197. You can also request a callback via GOV.UK.
  4. Remember that submission of this information is the collective responsibility of the entire trustee body, not just the treasurer or secretary.
  5. You need a password to access the annual return and other online services. All trustees must ensure they know who has the password and that it is handed over if that person leaves, otherwise it can be a time-consuming process to acquire a new one.
  6. Ensure your charity’s trustee details are up-to-date before you enter the annual return 2016.
  7. Income and expenditure figures must be recorded in whole pounds - not thousands of pounds, and no decimal points.
  8. The annual return prompts you to tell us if your accounts are ‘qualified’. Many people tick this box without reading what it means. Accounts are marked ‘qualified’ when the independent examiner or auditor has doubts or concerns about some aspects of the accounts. This does not relate to the fitness of the individual scrutinising the accounts.
  9. The annual return prompts you to declare if you have a serious incident to report; this can only be done by the trustees. If the trustees are unsure whether to report a serious incident, or they only have a suspicion that something serious has occurred, they should still report it.
  10. If you have all the information you need, completing your annual return should only take about 20 minutes - so go online, and file on time.
  11. The public can quickly and easily find information about whether a charity has met its legal reporting duties by checking on the register of charities.
    (Source: The Charity Commission)

Wednesday, 12 October 2016

INVITATION - PAVO ANNUAL CONFERENCE & GENERAL MEETING


INVITATION -  ANNUAL CONFERENCE & GENERAL MEETING
Tuesday 8th November 2016 9.45am– 3.30pm
Early Intervention & Prevention
 – the Third Sector Role in Powys

I am very pleased to invite you to PAVO’s Annual Conference and General Meeting, which will be held this year on Tuesday 8th November 2016.  Please find the programme attached.
It is widely acknowledged that third sector organisations and services have an essential role to play in prevention and early intervention. This conference will explore how these services could be an integral part of a common direction in Powys.

Conversation groups will focus on key prevention services, namely Befriending, Home Support, Community Co-ordinators, Children & Families, Practical Support, Mental Health & Wellbeing, Make Every Contact Count,  Community Delivery and Volunteering.

We are fortunate to have keynote contributions from senior managers in Powys County Council and Powys Teaching Health Board.

After lunch there will be an opportunity to influence matters that are currently the subject of public consultation or strategic engagement.


I very much hope you can join us for the event. Coffee will be available from 9,30am before the commencement of our AGM at 10.00am. Lunch will be available for those staying for the afternoon.

PAVO’s AGM and Annual Conference provide a great opportunity to meet other colleagues in the sector, as well as partners in other sectors to share information and good practice.
To let us know if you are able to attend please complete the online booking form, telephone: 01597 822191 or email: ruth.middleton@pavo.org.uk.
I look forward to seeing you on 8th November.
    Yours Sincerely 
    Gloria Jones Powell    
    Chair, Board of Trustees

GWAHODDIAD- CYNHADLEDD A CHYFARFOD CYFFREDINOL BLYNYDDOL
Dydd Mawrth 8fed Tachwedd 2016
Ymyrraeth Gynnar ac Atal - Rôl y Trydydd Sector ym Mhowys

Yr wyf yn falch iawn eich gwahodd i Gynhadledd a Chyfarfod Cyffredinol Blynyddol PAVO a gynhelir eleni ar ddydd mawrth 8 Tachwedd 2016. Fe welwch  y rhaglen wedi ei atodi
Cydnabyddir yn eang fod gan sefydliadau a gwasanaethau trydydd sector rôl hanfodol i'w chwarae wrth atal ac ymyrryd yn gynnar. Bydd y gynhadledd hon yn archwilio sut y gallai'r gwasanaethau hyn fod yn rhan annatod o gyfarwyddyd cyffredin ym Mhowys.

Bydd grwpiau sgwrsio yn canolbwyntio ar wasanaethau allweddol atal, sef Cyfeillio, Cymorth yn y Cartref, Cydlynwyr Cymunedol, Plant a Theuluoedd, Cymorth Ymarferol, Iechyd Meddwl a Lles, Gwneud i Bob Cyswllt Gyfrif, Cyflenwi Cymunedol a Gwirfoddoli.

Rydym yn ffodus i gael cyfraniadau cyweirnod gan uwch reolwyr yng Nghyngor Sir Powys a Bwrdd Iechyd Addysgu Powys.

Ar ôl cinio bydd yna gyfle i ddylanwadu ar faterion sydd yn destun ymgynghoriad cyhoeddus neu ymrwymiad strategol ar hyn o bryd.


Gobeithiaf yn fawr y gallwch ymuno â ni ar gyfer y digwyddiad. Bydd coffi ar gael o 9.45am cyn dechrau ein Cyfarfod Cyffredinol Blynyddol am 10.15am.  Bydd cinio ar gael i'r rhai sy'n aros am y prynhawn.


Mae Cyfarfod Cyffredinol Blynyddol a Chynhadledd PAVO yn darparu cyfle gwych i gwrdd â chydweithwyr eraill yn y sector, yn ogystal â phartneriaid mewn sectorau eraill i rannu gwybodaeth ac arfer da. 

Er mwyn rhoi gwybod i ni os ydych yn gallu bod yn bresennol, llenwch y ffurflen atodedig, ffoniwch 01597 822191 neu e-bostiwch ruth.middleton@pavo.org.uk
Edrychaf ymlaen at eich gweld ar 8fed o Dachwedd. 
Yn gywir  
Gloria Jones Powell
Cadeirydd, Bwrdd yr Ymddiriedolwyr

Friday, 7 October 2016

PAVO AGM - NOMINATIONS REQUEST 2016

PAVO is inviting nominations from individuals who wish to stand for election to their Board of Trustees at the AGM on Tuesday 8th November 2016.   The relevant documentation is available on our website http://www.pavo.org.uk/about-pavo/pavo-agm-2016.html#c8008 or if you require copies to be posted to you please contact us.
Please note that the closing date for nominations is 19th October at 12 noon.
Please pass this information on to anyone that you know who may be interested in standing.  We are looking for nominees with skills, knowledge or expertise that will further enhance the governance of the organisation.
Nominations must be endorsed by a PAVO member organisation, but nominees do not need to be a member of that organisation.
Trustees are not remunerated but all related expenses are reimbursed.
For more information about this opportunity please see the PAVO website www.pavo.org.uk/about-pavo or contact: Angela Owen, Plas Dolerw, Newtown, SY16 2EH 01686 626220 angela.owen@pavo.org.uk



ENWEBIADAU YMDDIRIEDOLWYR:
Mae PAVO yn gwahodd enwebiadau gan unigolion sy'n dymuno sefyll i gael eu hethol i'w Bwrdd Ymddiriedolwyr yn y Cyfarfod Cyffredinol Blynyddol ar Dydd Mawrth, 8 Tachwedd, 2016.  Gwelir y dogfennau priodol ar ein gwefan19http://www.pavo.org.uk/about-pavo/pavo-agm-2016.html#c8008  neu os ydych chi angen copiau wedi eu postio atoch, cysylltwch â ni.
Noder os gwelwch yn dda mai'r dyddiad cau ar gyfer derbyn enwebiadau yw'r 19fed o Hydref am 12 hanner dydd.
Rhowch y wybodaeth hon i unrhyw un eich bod yn adnabod a allai fod â diddordeb mewn sefyll. Rydym yn chwilio am enwebeion sydd â sgiliau, gwybodaeth neu arbenigedd a fydd yn gwella rheolaeth y sefydliad ymhellach.
Rhaid i enwebiadau gael ei gymeradwyo gan aelod-sefydliad PAVO, ond nid oes angen i enwebeion fod yn aelod o'r sefydliad hwnnw. 
Nid yw ymddiriedolwyr yn cael eu talu, ond ad-delir yr holl gostau sy'n gysylltiedig â’r rôl.
Am fwy o wybodaeth am y cyfle hwn, gweler wefan PAVO www.pavo.org.uk /about-pavo neu cysylltwch â: Angela Owen, Plas Dolerw, Y Drenewydd, SY16 2EH 01686 626220 angela.owen@pavo.org.uk.


Yr eiddoch yn gywir

Wednesday, 5 October 2016

New digital resource for charity trustees launched

The Charity Commission, Grant Thornton and Zoe Amar Communications have today launched 12 Questions about digital for trustees, a new resource intended to help trustees exploit digital for their charity. The guide contains examples of key questions that every board should be considering when approaching digital. They cover 12 wider areas relating to charity activity, such as fundraising, governance, brand, and service delivery.
The tool aims to facilitate conversations between trustees as well as between the board and charity staff, and to raise awareness amongst trustees of the strategic importance of digital. It looks at the opportunities digital can bring for charities, including better governance, and how trustees can ensure they are prepared for the potential challenges of digital.
Zoe Amar and Sarah Atkinson from the Charity Commission will be available on Twitter today to answer any questions that trustees might have about using digital to enhance their charity’s work. The public are also encouraged to share the questions they think boards should be asking about the topic using the hashtag #digitaltrustees.

Zoe Amar, Founder and Director of Zoe Amar Communications said:

There are wide-ranging benefits and exciting possibilities for charities in adopting digital, including ease of collaboration, reduced costs, and greater audience reach. As a trustee of a charity myself, I appreciate how daunting technology can seem, but not adopting technology can present as much of a risk as adopting it, and in the long term digital will only help charities be more sustainable and future proof the sector.

Louise Hughes, Marketing Manager – Not for Profit at Grant Thornton UK said:
Without buy-in from trustees, digital projects can lose focus and momentum so it’s crucial that digital transformation and culture change are driven by the board. Whilst IT literacy is an important factor for boards, having the right attitude and appetite for innovation is just as important. Whether charities want to demystify technology or just sense check their approach, this new checklist should help.

Sarah Atkinson, Director of Policy and Communications at the Charity Commission added:

As we encourage users to increasingly engage with the commission online, we want to reassure users and trustees with low IT skills or confidence levels that there is support for them.
Our questions by no means cover every single aspect of digital, but we hope trustees can use them to start a conversation about how they can plan for and respond to digital change in their organisation and determine where technology can add value.
The resource signposts to other relevant guidance and advice for trustees such as Get Safe Online. Grant Thornton, Zoe Amar Communications and Green Park Interim & Executive Search, supported by the Commission, are also planning future informal events to support charity leaders on their journey with digital. For more information, keep an eye on their social media pages (@zoeamar@GrantThorntonUK).
The resource is available on GOV.UK.
(Source: Charity Commission)