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impact of coronavirus on the charities sector - a changing landscape

4 August 2020

Many charities are continuing to experience an increase in demand for their services against a significant decrease in income. The extent to which coronavirus has affected the charitable sector remains unknown, however across the sector it is predicted that there will be a shortfall in income of £12.4 billion for 2020.

Browne Jacobson, Quilter Cheviot and Moore Kingston Smith have partnered to host a series of seminars to discuss any lessons learned from COVID-19 and how charities can adapt to the changing landscape. The seminars focus on four key themes:

  • Strategy;
  • Governance;
  • Financial resilience; and
  • The Future of Charities.

Through the crisis - strategy

Catherine Rustomji chairs the first of a weekly series of panel discussions “Through the Crisis - Strategy” exploring common issues faced by charitable trustees.


This seminar focuses on the overarching importance of strategic planning even during a crisis to ensure trustees continue to meet the core objectives of the charity, stakeholders’ expectations and beneficiaries needs. The panellists also discuss the long-term importance of strategy and how it can assist charities to thrive in the post crisis period. Common issues trustees will need to consider post coronavirus are likely to include diversifying charities income streams and effective collaboration with other organisations in response to the pandemic.


In the crisis - governance 

The idea of collaboration and diversification of income within the charities sector is further discussed in the second seminar hosted by James Saunders of Moore Kingston Smith “In the Crisis - Governance”


The panel considers the importance of business continuity plans and digital transformation policies for charities and the need to be flexible in respect of decision- making procedures. The second seminar further discusses the importance of strategic planning and how this is intertwined with governance since trustees will need to ensure that they continue to act within its charitable objectives.


Coming out of the crisis - financial resilience

This week, Catherine Rustomji of Browne Jacobson chairs the panel and is joined by James Saunders of Moore Kingston Smith, William Reid of Quilter Cheviot and Rebecca Porta, Chief Executive of Bowel and Cancer Research and Bowel Disease Research Foundation, who discuss the main financial challenges and priorities coming out of the crisis, and also examine investment strategies.


For more info please contact Catherine. Catherine specialises in charity law with particular emphasis on constitutional and governance matters, legal structures, social enterprises and duties and responsibilities of charity trustees.

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The opinions expressed on this video are provided for the purposes of general interest and information and should not be relied upon. They contain only summaries of aspects of the subject matter at the time of publishing and do not provide comprehensive statements of the law. They do not constitute legal advice and do not provide a substitute for it. So why not talk to us and seek advice that's tailored to you? You can look up one of our experts on this website or call on 0370 270 6000.

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