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See also . . .

The List of organisations and resources page :

  • You can sort the list (table) on this page - eg by A-Z or by subject (classified order).
    Also it serves as a key to abbreviations used.
    There are around 350 entries.  Most entries have explanatory notes and a web address.

The Charity Commission

Its full name is "The Charity Commission for England and Wales".

Charity Commission logo (our thanks to the Commission)

Website:  www.charity-commission.gov.uk  
Tel:  0845 300 0218
Note:  Its powers derive from the Charities Acts.
However, it's called the Charity (not Charities) Commission.

Status - The Commission is an independent central government agency (a non-ministerial government department), answerable to the Cabinet Office.

Locations - It has four offices - Central London, Taunton (Somerset), Liverpool (NW England) and Newport (South Wales).

The Commission registers charities and monitors them.  It conducts inquiries into suspected fraud etc and takes appropriate action.  There's a section dealing with the Charity Commission on our Regulators page.

The Commission's website has a searchable database of all the 180,000 or so registered charities - the "online Register".

You can use this database to check out any house-to-house collection if you think it might be bogus.

Types of charity

xStatistics:There are around 180,000 registered charities in England and Wales.  Their total annual income is over £20 billion (=£20,000 million).

Charities vary enormously.  For example :

Aims - Education, relief of the poor, animal welfare, environment etc.
A few charities exist solely to assist other charities - providing services (legal, financial, fundraising, information/advice etc), such as the Charities Aid Foundation (CAF) and the National Council for Voluntary Organisations (NCVO).

Coins (c) freeimages.co.uk

Annual turnover - Ranges from under £1,000 to over £100 million (eg Oxfam).

Staff - The smallest have no paid staff and are run by one volunteer (based at home).  The largest have over 1,000 employees.

Premises - Ranges from none to over 500.

Ownership of land - Varies from none to large estates (the National Trust owns 600,000 acres).

World map (courtesy of Oxfam)

Geographical coverage - Ranges from one building (like a school), to one town, one county, one region, all the UK, to global (eg WWF, Oxfam).

Age - Ranges from just formed a few days ago, to over 100 years old (such as the National Trust - founded 1895).

Some are also registered as limited companies ('Ltd').

Two one-pound coins

Some have trading subsidiaries, registered as limited companies (eg chains of charity shops).  All the profits from these go to the charity.
Example: Salvation Army Trading Company Ltd (SATCO).

Some charities provide benefits for members - for example members of the National Trust get free admission to its properties.

Charities - funding

Sources - Charities get their income from a variety of sources, including :

Credit cards (c) freeimages.co.uk
Pile of one-pound coins

Methods - The public contribute in various ways, such as :

Charities :
Related pages and Useful links

Certain images from: www.freeimages.co.uk