Ten ways to address the risk of confidence ebbing away from your charity Board.

An old Dutch proverb is apt for the coverage of yet another charity governance investigation – ‘Trust arrives on foot and leaves on horseback’.

This is appropriate not only for the particular charity directly in the spotlight but, sadly, for the sector as a whole which is bemoaning another dent to public confidence.  As that confidence has galloped away, it is replaced by scepticism and more reticence to donate. Behind many of these cases are questionable approaches to governance.

Such investigative programmes normally have a common postscript, letting you know what you should do If you are affected by the any of the issues covered. Unfortunately, those estimated 60,000 Directors who are legally responsible for approximately 8,000 charitable companies in Ireland, as members of Boards of Directors, don’t have anything as explicitly helpful as that.  As the legal and public expectations quite rightly continue to rise, and a new (albeit lightly staffed) regulator is put in place, not all charities have been quick to keep pace.

This Advisory Note highlights 10 ways to address the risk of confidence ebbing away from your charity Board.

Brendan Lenihan is Managing Director of Navigo Consulting. He is a Chartered Accountant and former President of the Institute of Chartered Accountants in Ireland.  He is, and has been, a Director of a number of charitable bodies in Ireland.  

The full text of the advisory note is available here – Navigo – Charities Advisory Note – 30 June 2016