Charity Futures - Sir Stephen Bubb's programme to improve charity governance and leadership - has become a separate legal entity from Acevo and will hold its first board meeting this evening.
The programme was started within Acevo by Bubb when he stood down as chief executive last year, and has financial backing from Woodford Investment Management. It has now registered as a community interest company, appointed a board and moved out of Acevo’s offices.
An announcement said: “After a year of incubation, Charity Futures is ready to take off as an autonomous community interest company.”
A spokesman said it had chosen to constitute itself as a CIC, rather than a charity because it “affords us more operational flexibility if we want to broaden activities once we are established”.
CICs are common model for social enterprises and a requirement is that they have an ‘asset lock’ to prevent assets being taken outside of the community they serve. CICs are overseen by the CIC Regulator at Companies House.
Charity Futures registered with Companies House as Third Sector Futures and filed incorporation documents on 19 April.
Bubb to be chief executive
Bubb has now become the chief executive of Charity Futures and will also sit on its board. Its board is chaired by Jonathan Smith, head of corporate social responsibility for Woodford Investment Management.
The other board members are Sir Stuart Etherington, chief executive of NCVO, Stepehn Barclay, co-founder of the Oxford Centre for the Study of Philanthropy, Ann Limb, chair of the Scout Association, and Othman Moqbel, chief executive of Human Appeal and an Acevo trustee.
Charity Futures is now based at CAN Mezzanine, not at Acevo’s offices within Society Building. It has also launched a website.
Its aims are to support the development of governance and leadership for charities, carry out research, convene others and improve public understanding of charities.
Over the past year Charity Futures has held a number of round tables around the country, carried out a survey and submitted evidence to the House of Lords committee on charities. It plans to launch a programme of keynote lectures and publish provocation papers. More details are expected in July.
‘I am excited about what Charity Futures can do’
Bubb said: "Our country needs great professional charities. Our governance and leadership is not always as good as it should be. That's just not acceptable. The Kids Company fiasco was not the only example which demonstrated the danger of failing to take this seriously.
“I'm excited about what Charity Futures can do. I'm delighted to have found a philanthropist who wants to support charity infrastructure. Leaving Acevo after 17 years, I remain committed to a better sector and determined to make a difference in this important new leadership role.
“And I'm so pleased that in taking up this role I will be working alongside such an impressive board, including my old friend Sir Stuart Etherington.”
Etherington said: “I’m pleased to see the launch of Charity Futures as a fully-fledged organisation. In a rapidly changing world, it’s important we think about what the future looks like so we can adapt in time. Charity Futures is an important part of helping the sector to do this.”
Vicky Browning, chief executive of Acevo, said: “I wish Charity Futures the brightest of futures as an independent organisation. As the leader of an organisation committed to supporting and championing civil society leaders in the field I look forward to the additional future perspectives being developed by Charity Futures.”