Chief executives of UK charities are among the least trusted by the public in the world. The findings come from a recent survey, which also reveals that out of 22 countries, UK charities had the fourth-lowest trust score, just behind South Korea, Japan and Spain.
These findings were published in April, at an event hosted by New Philanthropy Capital. It also revealed that almost half (49%) of those questioned, gave a negative response when asked if they trusted charity chief executives to tell the truth.
It is no surprise that some people mistrust charities given recent scandals, which include the meltdown of Kid’s Company.
Similarly, the reputation of several charities has been damaged after the Panama Papers leak. Whilst the Red Cross and the World Wildlife Fund are named in transactions documented in the papers, this has since been revealed to be false due to the fact the charities’ names were used as part of a cover-up, the leak also implicates several major ‘philanthropists’. These include Sarah Ferguson, ‘Duchess of York’ and Conservative MP, Antony (Tony) Baldry, who both act as charity trustees and patrons.
Oxfam has since launched a campaign to ‘End the era of tax havens,’ however, many charities are yet to make a decision on whether to take action against their tax avoiding donors.
With these scandals affirming the public’s distrust, people are becoming less willing to donate. A recent review by tax advisory firm, Grant Thornton, revealed that out of 100 charities with the largest income in England and Wales, ‘the most commonly cited risk was loss of funding.’
This could have very drastic effects for charities that rely on the public’s support. As such the need to restore trust is becoming more and more apparent and many organisations are calling for greater transparency in the sector.
Whilst the National Council for Voluntary Organisations has called (page 25) for “charities to disclose the exact salaries of named, senior staff members”, Grant Thornton’s report (page 5) suggests more needs to be done to “move the conversation on from narrow debates about overheads”. They propose a more comprehensive report, which showcases the “broader [and] long-term effects” of a charity’s work and the impact it is having on public benefit.
Many people want to support charities and help their community.
For those that are supporters, it is their right to know where the money is being spent, and without transparency the future stability of charities is questionable.
Support Oxfam’s ‘End the era of tax havens’ campaign
Find out more about Grant Thornton’s report – Transmitting Trust through Good Governance
Write to your local MP calling for greater transparency in the charity sector.
Image credit Pixabay/ Bohed
We need your help to keep speaking the truth
Every story that you have come to us with; each injustice you have asked us to investigate; every campaign we have fought; each of your unheard voices we amplified; we do this for you. We are making a difference on your behalf.
Our fight is your fight. You’ve supported our collective struggle every time you gave us a like; and every time you shared our work across social media. Now we need you to support us with a monthly donation.
We have published nearly 2,000 articles and over 50 films in 2021. And we want to do this and more in 2022 but we don’t have enough money to go on at this pace. So, if you value our work and want us to continue then please join us and be part of The Canary family.
In return, you get:
* Advert free reading experience
* Quarterly group video call with the Editor-in-Chief
* Behind the scenes monthly e-newsletter
* 20% discount in our shop
Almost all of our spending goes to the people who make The Canary’s content. So your contribution directly supports our writers and enables us to continue to do what we do: speaking truth, powered by you. We have weathered many attempts to shut us down and silence our vital opposition to an increasingly fascist government and right-wing mainstream media.
With your help we can continue:
* Holding political and state power to account
* Advocating for the people the system marginalises
* Being a media outlet that upholds the highest standards
* Campaigning on the issues others won’t
* Putting your lives central to everything we do
We are a drop of truth in an ocean of deceit. But we can’t do this without your support. So please, can you help us continue the fight?