David Gilani

What’s your favourite number?

Mine is – 1148683 – and that’s because it’s the number SUSU has for officially registering as a charity!

As part of the 2006 Charity Act, Students’ Unions have had to register as charities, but it brings some benefits along with it… such as opening grants, trust funds and commercial discounts are now accessible for SUSU and to our societies to apply to. 

There’s also some less interesting stuff, which has meant we’ve been looking at our trustee board structure, how we illustrate our income and expenditure publicly, and how we adhere to the 6 benchmarks of an effective charity from the Charity Commission: –

  • Clear about its purpose
  • A strong board
  • Fit for purpose
  • Learning and improving
  • Financially sound and Prudent
  • Accountable and transparent

In terms of how SUSU is run, we have created a Memorandum and Articles of Association (M&A), which outline our clear purpose, in the same way that we used to have our ‘laws’ written at the start of the Constitution.

Becoming a charity means also becoming a completely independent organisation from the University, and from that we’re now officially a company limited by guarantee. So, rather than the trustees being financially accountable to potentially an unlimited sum of money, if SUSU were to go bankrupt (though we’re not planning to) each of our members would pay a maximum of 10 pence, and that would be the limit of our guarantee!

How about that for some light Monday reading? Why not try typing in your SUSU’s charity number on the Charity Commission website?

Governance love

Davey G

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