The Bailiwick of Guernsey is fortunate to have a successful and healthy charitable sector involved with a wide variety of community activities. Many of these voluntary and charitable groups - known collectively as the 'third sector' - work alongside government to deliver essential services and facilities. In September 2014, the States of Guernsey and the Association of Guernsey Charities (on behalf of local charities) signed a Social Compact. This Compact sets out a shared vision to work together effectively to achieve common goals and outcomes for the people of Guernsey. The Compact gives clear guidance on the requirements and obligations of both parties.
Third Sector Groups
- Association of Guernsey Charities - The Association of Guernsey Charities (AGC) is an umbrella organisation for the charitable sector. The AGC is not a regulatory body, but can be used as a central point of contact with its membership and for consultations on behalf of the sector. The AGC has a wealth of information and guidance relevant to the third sector, along with contact details for each member's charity, forthcoming events and volunteer requirements.
- The AGC distributes the proceeds from the Channel Island Christmas Lottery, and facilitates the giving.gg and volunteer.gg sites.
- Guernsey Community Foundation - The Guernsey Community Foundation (GCF) promotes effective philanthropy and works to support the development of the third sector by working closely with government, businesses and other third sector groups.
- The GCF has commissioned and conducted research into local issues such as the nature of poverty in the island. Alongside the AGC, the GCF is part of the partnership working with the States to progress work around social policy.
- Lloyds Bank Foundation - The Lloyds Bank Foundation for the Channel Islands gives grants to charities helping disadvantaged people play a fuller role in the community. The Foundation is an independently registered charity funded by the profits of Lloyds Banking Group.
- Third Sector Development Group - The Third Sector Development Group (formerly the Third Sector Liaison Group) was formed in 2012 to help the States engage with the local voluntary and charitable sector. It is currently comprised of representatives from the States of Guernsey, Association of Guernsey Charities, Guernsey Community Foundation, Disability Alliance, Guernsey Mind, the Youth Commission, and Ageing Well in the Bailiwick. The group meets periodically to consider matters of mutual interest or concern and to consider how to work together to deliver services and facilities in line with the Social Compact.
Setting up a charity
- The Association of Guernsey Charities and the Guernsey Registry have further information on how to go about starting a charity. In short, a charity must be set up for 'charitable purposes' only.
- Charity Registration - Since 2014, the responsibility for the registration and ongoing administration of charities and non-profit organisations has been held by the Guernsey Registry. There is a legal requirement for all charities and non-profit organisations based in Guernsey, Alderney, Herm and Jethou to register with the Office of the Registrar, under the Charities and Non Profit Organisations (Registration) (Guernsey) Law, 2008, also referred to as the 'Charity Law, 2008'. However, charities with gross assets and funds less than £10,000, or gross annual income of less than £5,000 are exempt and do not have to register, but can register if they want to.
- Registration is by application form to the Guernsey Registry.
- Income tax relief for charities -
- Criminal conviction disclosures (police checks) - Some charities will need to ensure that the necessary checks have been carried out on employees and volunteers, such as those working with vulnerable adults and children. The Guernsey Vetting Bureau facilitates police checks on individuals.
- Volunteering - To find out about volunteering opportunities or to seek volunteers for your charity and for related news and events visit volunteer.gg. This site operates as an online forum for volunteering in Guernsey and puts volunteers directly into contact with local charities.
Fundraising and Grants
- Channel Islands Christmas Lottery - The States of Guernsey and the States of Jersey jointly operate the Channel Islands Christmas Lottery. The lottery is managed on behalf of the States of Guernsey by the States Trading Supervisory Board.
- Each year, the proceeds from the Guernsey lottery ticket sales are given to the Association of Guernsey Charities to distribute. The AGC is responsible for the grant application process. Charities wishing to apply for a grant have to be members of the AGC, and a Guernsey registered charity. Grants can only be considered for projects within the island, or for the benefit of islanders.
- Giving.gg - The Association of Guernsey Charities has developed an online donation facility for its members called giving.gg that aims to make fundraising easier for local charities.
- Strategic grants programme - The Guernsey Community Foundation operates a strategic grants programme that focuses on developing the operational and delivery capability of charities, so that they can better address and support the needs of the community.
- Overseas aid grants - Applications can be made for grant aid funding, provided by the States of Guernsey, for development and humanitarian work in developing countries. The grants are allocated annual through an online application process.
- States grants - States' Committees can issue grants to organisations in certain circumstances where there is a direct policy link to the role of that particular Committee. Grants are generally not given to support operational costs or service delivery, but for specific purposes to achieve clear outcomes that link to the aims of the States.
- ICCI Conservation awards - The Insurance Corporation Conservation Awards are annual that support conservation projects and which are open to the whole community.
- The Channel Islands Co-operative Society Limited - The CI Co-operative supports charities and voluntary organisations through different giving schemes, such as the Co-operative Eco fund, Helping Hands and sponsorship.
- If you are considering organising an event for charitable purposes, depending on the type of event certain permissions may be required.
- Charitable collections - there are no specific permissions or regulations that apply to flag days; however, the relevant Parish Constables may have guidance for their particular parish in relation to street collections. It is advised that UK regulations be adhered to as outlined by the Institute of Fundraising.
- Road closures - for information on special events where road closures or traffic management may be required.
- Liquor licence - should a license be required.
- St. Johns Ambulance - if first aid is required at the event contact St. Johns directly.
- The organising an event page provides further guidance and useful information.