Good governance in charities is fundamental to their success. It enables and supports a charity’s compliance with the law and relevant regulations. It also promotes a culture where everything works towards fulfilling the charity’s vision.

This Code is a practical tool to help charities and their trustees develop high standards of governance. Read more about this Code and using this Code.

Charity PriorityGovernance
SkillsRisk Control, Process Improvement cycle, Meeting Management, Action Planning
Aims and Objectives


Charities exist to fulfil their charitable purposes. Trustees have a responsibility to understand the environment in which the charity is operating and to lead the charity in fulfilling its purposes as effectively as possible with the resources available. To do otherwise would be failing their executive, beneficiaries, funders and supporters.

The board’s core role is a focus on strategy, performance, support and assurance.

Core Values


The board and executive management acts with integrity, adopting values and creating a culture which helps achieve the organisation’s charitable purposes. The board is aware of the importance of the public’s confidence and trust in charities, and trustees undertake their duties accordingly. They support their executive, and direct for success.


The board has a key impact on whether a charity thrives. The tone the board sets through its leadership, behaviour, culture and overall performance is critical to the charity’s success. They are directors, but also servants of the charity. It is important to have a rigorous approach to trustee recruitment, performance and development, and to the board’s conduct. In an effective team, board members feel it is safe to suggest, question and challenge ideas and address, rather than avoid, difficult topics.