Friday, June 24, 2016

What Makes An Effective Charity? - Expert Opinions

What makes an effective charity? Here at Ripples Foundation we believe that our model of sustainability is key to the longevity of our projects and the amount of women we are able to empower. But what do the experts in the field of charities think? Below we feature some of the opinions of industry leaders on this topic.

Iona Joy - NPC's Head of Charities team

"The main questions charities should be asking themselves are these:

  • Activities: Is the charity doing the right thing in the right way? Does it have a coherent strategy or theory of change?
  • Results: Is the charity able to evidence its impact? Does it have a culture of measuring impact and learning from it?
  • Leadership: Does the board and leadership team set clear goals, and demonstrate managerial competence? Is the skills mix right?
  • People and resources: Does the charity make the most of its human, physical and brand assets?
  • Finances: Is the charity’s financial management sound, and how risky is the charity’s financial position in terms of income diversification and reserves?
  • Ambition: Is this a charity that really wants to change the status quo?"

Cecile Hestbaek - NPC

"The best thing for charities is to be transparent about what they’re doing, and let the public do the rest. When you choose a school for your child, for example, what are you going to look at? The educational attainment and Ofsted reports, or how much of the budget is spent on teachers’ salaries? Personally, I’d always choose a good charity that spends on admin over one which has low admin costs but is far less effective at actually helping people."

"We know that people say they generally prefer the idea of small, grassroots charities. The truth is, sometimes they do the best work and sometimes they don’t. Effectiveness is everything – we always look at how good charities are at achieving change for the people who need it. You can look at data on soft outcomes such as improved confidence or changed attitudes, or hard outcomes like how many people a charity helps into employment."

Errol Copilevitz, Copilevitz & Canter

"A charity should have a clearly defined mission.  Whether it is to find a cure or alleviate suffering, the mission of the organization should be clear to everyone, which includes the staff, the public, and the media.
A charity should be governed by an active independent board of directors that provides oversight and guidance to professional staff."

What do you think makes a good charity? Please comment below with your suggestions.
Alysha Bennett Web Developer

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