Charity trustees polled on accounting framework

Charity trustees are being asked for their views on the charity accounting framework as part of an initiative to make the charities statement of recommended practice (SORP) easier to understand and to improve compliance

ICSA: The Chartered Governance Institute is leading the charities SORP trustee engagement strand, which is helping the SORP-making committee develop the next SORP, and is tasked with providing insight from the point of view of charity trustees.

It is conducting a survey of trustees in England, Wales, Scotland, Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland to help to clarify their position.

This seeks to understand their awareness of the SORP; how, if at all, they engage with the development of their charity’s annual report and accounts; what help trustees need to help prepare their annual report and accounts; and what aspects of the charity annual report and accounts are unhelpful or otherwise unnecessary.

Louise Thomson, head of policy (not for profit) at ICSA: The Chartered Governance Institute, said: ‘The production and approval of the annual report and accounts is the responsibility of all the charity trustees, not just the trustee with an interest, or expertise, in finance.

‘However, the SORP can be an alien document to many charity trustees: too long, too much jargon, overly technical or unrelatable to the work of the charity.

‘Consequently, some charity annual reports and accounts are non-compliant, of poor quality or otherwise unhelpful to a range of readers.’

The survey, which can be completed anonymously, is open until 7 December.

Useful links:

The survey

Charity SORP trustee engagement strand details

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