The Charity Commission are currently consulting on potential new questions for next year’s Annual Return. The questions look at Gift Aid, professional fundraisers and Chief Executive pay, among other subjects.

WCVA have prepared this survey to allow the sector to feed into our response to this survey. We have outlined some initial thoughts regarding each question; however, these are subject to change.

This survey will close on Friday, November 17 at 5pm. It will take approximately 15 minutes to complete fully; however it is not necessary to answer every question.

* 1. Proposed new question: Does the charity work with a professional fundraiser? If yes, the charity will be asked if it has a signed contract with the professional fundraiser.

WCVA believes this question is valid as it links with the Fundraising Regulator’s view in this area, however the question should state the Regulator’s definition of a professional fundraiser to ensure clarity across the sector.

Should this question be included?

* 2. Proposed new question: How many contracts did the charity receive from central or local government? What was the total value of the contracts received from central or local government? How many grants did the charity receive from central and local government? What was the total value of the grants received from central and local government?

WCVA believes this question should be included to allow people to allow for greater accountability and transparency in both the third sector and local/central government, and improve public trust in the third sector.

Should this question be included?


* 3. Proposed new question: During the financial period for this Annual Return, how much Gift Aid did the charity claim?

Asking this question will again improve transparency and public trust in the sector, as well as tracking where Gift Aid administration could be carried out more effectively. However, it should be noted that asking this could provide an extra burden on smaller charities.

Should this question be included?

* 4. Proposed new question: During the financial period for this Annual Return, did the charity receive income from outside the UK? If yes, the charity will be asked to select the countries income was received from via a drop-down list, and state the amount of income and the source from these options:

·         Overseas governments or quasi-government bodies

·         Overseas charities, NGOs or NPOs

·         Other overseas institutions (e.g. private company donations)

·         Individual donors

·         Other overseas institutional donors

·         Unknown/don’t know

WCVA understands the Commission’s belief that this question could help gather a fuller picture of charity funding and identify groups at risk of abuse. However, we are unsure why there is a threshold of £10,000 before an organisation is required to report on this, and this question could mean a large administrative burden placed on a number of groups.

Should this question be included?

* 5. Proposed new question: During the financial period for this Annual Return, did any of your charity’s staff receive a salary of £60,000 or more? If yes, the charity will be asked:

Enter the number of staff for each of the following salary bands:

£60,000-£70,000
£70,001 to £80,000
£80,001 to £90,000
£90,001 to £100,000
£100,001 to £110,000
£110,001 to £120,000
£120,001 to £130,000
£130,001 to £140,000
£140,001 to £150,000
Over £150,001

How much is the charity CEO paid?


WCVA feels that staff and salary pay is not indicative of whether a charity is effectively delivering its goals and making a positive impact. As the Code of Fundraising Practice notes, ‘It is unfair to compare the costs of one organisation with another because of differences in activities and, therefore, the way organisations account for costs’.

However, we understand that publishing this information could be seen as a way to improve transparency within the third sector. In which case we would suggest that charities could publish executive salaries within their Annual Reports and on their websites, providing them with the opportunity to develop a narrative alongside this information to demonstrate the impact they have. Simply publishing this information within the Annual Return robs a charity of the chance to demonstrate the way they work and invites negative perceptions of the sector.

Should this question be included?

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