Charity Commission bid for the 'heart of society'

A document outlining a radical reorganisation of the Charity Commission, which will include a new logo and the appointment of a 'head of innovation', was launched at a public meeting of the commission board this week.

Called 'Charity working at the heart of society', the document is the result of both internal and external consultation following the appointments last year of Geraldine Peacock as chair and Andrew Hind as chief executive.

"It is a manifesto that attempts to make clearer the important role the commission plays and the key outcomes we're looking for," Hind told Third Sector. "There will be more consultation in the summer, leading to a detailed operational plan."

The document pledges to make the commission a more modern and dynamic organisation that will regulate smaller charities more lightly but scrutinise larger ones more closely.

It says the commission will make greater use of the knowledge it gathers, sharing it more widely, helping to define best practice and championing the charitable sector.

Hind said this would add a crucial 'third leg' to the operations of the commission, which at present is mainly involved in advice and investigations.

The reorganisation would remove boundaries between many departments to produce a more seamless operation with less duplication, he said.

All registration will be at the Taunton office, and all initial inquiries will go to a new reception unit that will either deal with them immediately, divert them to another agency or refer them straight to the correct commission department.

"In six to nine months, we think this will lead to a significant improvement in the consistency and quality of advice," Hind said.

Under this third major development, all information received will be put on a single database so it can be analysed and published.

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