Key NI funder stresses the importance of completing the charity annual monitoring return.
Due to a legal judgement charities registered before the end of May 2019 are no longer considered to be registered by the Charity Commission. So if a charity was added to the register prior to the end of May 2019, it is no longer technically registered and there is no legal obligation for trustees to complete their annual monitoring return. The Commission has stopped sending out reminders to charities to complete their annual monitoring return however online services have been left open, so it is possible to complete your annual monitoring return. The Commission recommends that charities continue as normal while it works with the Department for Communities to resolve the situation.
The Halifax Foundation for NI has stated that it expects charities to complete their annual monitoring return and upload their reports and accounts to the charity register. Brenda McMullan, Executive Director, Halifax Foundation, says
“Charity Commission NI will not be sending out reminders to charities to submit their returns due to the Court of Appeal ruling. However, in order to obtain funding from Halifax Foundation for Northern Ireland, it is a requirement that your paperwork is up to date with CCNI. Please ensure you file your returns as normal, and on time.”
Lynn Kennedy, NICVA's Fundraising Advice Officer stresses the importance of completing accounts and reports. She says
"Your most recent accounts are such a basic requirement for nearly all grant funders. It not only allows them to assess your current financial position, but also reflects on both your charity's governance and your potential ability to adequately manage any funding that they might provide. Without them, your ability to even apply for funding is incredibly limited."
So to increase your chances of funding, we recommend you complete your annual return on time. Online services can be accessed here:
NICVA and RCN are offering specialist help until the end of March 2021 to charities who may need assistance with their annual monitoring return. If you are in the following Council areas, Antrim and Newtownabbey Borough Council, Ards and North Down Borough Council, Armagh City, Banbridge and Craigavon Borough Council, Belfast City Council, Causeway Coast and Glens Borough Council, Derry City and Strabane District Council, Lisburn and Castlereagh City Council and Newry, Mourne and Down District Council, please contact Michele Crilly ([email protected]) on 028 90 877777. Alternatively, if you are in Mid and East Antrim, Mid Ulster or Fermanagh and Omagh Council areas, contact Kathryn Kerr ([email protected]) on 028 8676 6670.
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