As the coronavirus spreads, charities are taking care of others and themselves.
In these difficult times, it’s been heartening to see our charities and broader civil society do what they do best – respond positively and practically to help their beneficiaries and wider society. From expert advice and expedited medical research, to practical support for changes to daily life and collaborative working for vulnerable people, charities are at the forefront of helping us all cope with the COVID-19 pandemic.
We’ve also been impressed by the calm and thoughtful efforts our charity clients are making to keep their services running, look after their people and adjust their operations to cope with the disruption.
To keep you up to speed with the implications of the COVID-19/coronavirus outbreak and guide your organisation’s response, our charities and social ventures team has gathered together some of the latest, most useful links for our charity clients.
We are keeping this list up to date: please let us know if you have found other materials useful, or if you have any particular questions or issues that we could usefully cover.
The links below include articles we have prepared about reviewing contracts and force majeure clauses, lease negotiations, and workers in the gig economy.
- UK government response – including guidance notes and latest information
- Charity Commission – statement for charities on flexible charity regulation during the coronavirus pandemic, including how to request an extension of time for filing an annual return
- NCVO detailed guidance for charities on coronavirus – particularly useful to see what’s ‘standard’ for the charity sector
- Civil Society – providing the latest news, analysis and advice for the charity sector
Governance and regulation
- Charity Commission brief guidance for charities on coronavirus response, including reporting serious incidents – note that this was updated overnight on 13 March, to confirm that the usual rules on serious incident report apply
- Updated guidance from the Charity Commission for the charity sector including amending charitable objects (to enable a charity to help in the COVID-19 effort), use of reserves and restricted funds, paying staff, and cancelling or postponing an AGM or other meetings
- Companies House guidance on how to request an automatic and immediate 3-month extension of time to file accounts and clarification over late filing penalties
- OSCR (Scottish Charity Regulator) – update and information for Scottish-registered charities
- The Chartered Governance Institute’s guidance on the impact of COVID-19 on AGMs
Finances and operations
- Guidance from the Charity Commission on managing financial difficulties caused by COVID-19.
- Charities SORP guidance on implications of COVID-19 control measures on preparing charity accounts and financial reporting
- Charity Finance Group article on coronavirus for finance professionals
- Statement from London Funders and others about grant funding – how they will adapt their approach to grant funding to support charities through the coronavirus outbreak
- Taylor Vinters article on the impact for landlords and tenants
- Taylor Vinters article on how the new COVID-19 laws are impacting business and residential tenancies
- Taylor Vinters article outlining the £750m package of government support for charities
Employment and remote working
- ACAS guidance on coronavirus for employers – advice reviewed daily
- Taylor Vinters article on the impacts for workers in the gig economy
- Civil Society article on working remotely for charities
- Taylor Vinters article on managing your people – leadership insights and strategies
- Charity Digital article about free IT tools being offered to support charities with remote working
- Government guidance on the Coronavirus Job Retention scheme
- Civil Society Article considering the government’s Coronavirus Job Retention scheme (furloughing) in relation to charities
Beneficiaries and services
- Charity Digital article on coronavirus communications, including for beneficiaries
- The SCVO has a page dedicated to helping charities to continue their services to beneficiaries
- Charity Digital article on free tech being offered to charities to help them continue to provide their services
- Small Charities Coalition webpage including questions designed to help charities consider how best to support their service users
- Community Foundation for Northern Ireland has set up a fund offering community organisations emergency funding to deal with the potential exacerbation of loneliness and isolation experienced by older people as a result of the COVID-19 outbreak
- Guidance from the Information Commissioner’s Office on data protection during the COVID-19 crisis
Fundraising / Events
- Fundraising Regulator guidance on events
- Further advice from Fundraising Regulator related to fundraising (dated 18 March 2020)
- Institute of Fundraising article on coronavirus for fundraising professionals
- Joint statement from Fundraising Regulator and Institute of Fundraising
- Charity Digital article on running virtual events
- Crowdfunder webpage offering 100% free fundraising
- Civil Society article on what funding may be available to charities
- Civil Society article detailing launch of £100m loan fund for charities and social enterprises
- Civil Society article on £5 million emergency fund created by Charities Aid Foundation
- Civil Society article on £300 million of funding available from the National Lottery Community Fund to help charities with the COVID-19 crisis
Contracts and force majeure
- Taylor Vinters article on contracts and force majeure clauses– high-level guidance and actions for checking contracts
We hope this is helpful – please do let us know if you have other useful resources to share, or if there’s anything else we can do to support your charity at this time.
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