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Equity Trustees staying on top of the key issues and challenges facing the philanthropy sector 

2020 was a challenging year for all, and especially on the for-purpose sector.  Significant demands were placed on the Australian Charities and Not-for-profits Commission (ACNC) as the regulator.

As your professional trustee, it is our role to stay on top of the key issues and challenges facing the philanthropy sector and ensure your trusts are compliant but also responsive to the needs of the sector.

Here were some of the key areas of focus for the ACNC in 2020 were:

• A special review of the bushfire response: Three charities involved in the bushfire response were reviewed in order to maintain, protect and enhance public trust and confidence in the charity sector

• Transforming the Annual Information Statement and the ACNC Charity Register into a more effective and transparent tool

• Working with state and territory governments to create meaningful reductions in red tape for charities

• Revoking the registration of 303 Australian charities, each of which had twice failed to submit their Annual Information Statements

• The introduction of a Charity Risk Review program, which includes field-based compliance reviews to assess risk in the sector and intervene with charities before significant issues arise. This is another measure to provide assurance to the public they can be confident in the sector.