Example Charity Trustee & Volunteer Code of Conduct Template

An example charity trustee and volunteer code of conduct template to comply with Charity Commission guidance.

Charity Trustee & Volunteer Code of Conduct Template

A trustee and volunteer code of conduct for charities that provides a template to lay out your ethics and core values.   

A code of conduct is an agreement between the charity and its volunteers that explains the standards of behaviour that we all expect from each other to ensure our charity is well run and everyone is kept safe.

You can download example charity and trustee codes of conduct in Word format from within the Charity Excellence system.  Register (everything is free), login, click the AI bunny icon and then his Policies button and tell him you want a charity volunteer or trustee code of conduct template.  There are 40 policies available.

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To access help and resources on anything to do with running a charity, including funding, click the AI Bunny icon in the bottom right of your screen and ask it short questions, including key words.  Register, then login and the in-system AI Bunny is able to write funding bids and download 30+ charity policy templates as well.

Charity Code of Conduct - Applicability

This charity code of conduct applies to all trustees, other volunteers, employees, contractors, and third-party representatives of [Charity Name] (the “Charity”).  Its requirements should be reflected in other policies and procedures, agreements and contracts, as necessary.

Charity Trustee Code of Conduct

Charity trustees are ultimately responsible for the charity, so I often suggest additional guidelines to support them in this.  As charity trustees collectively and individually, we will:

  • Act legally and properly - by acting with integrity, honesty, within the law and our governing document, and in the charity’s best interests at all times.
  • Create a safe space– in which everyone is encouraged and feels able to speak.
  • Positively challenge– each other, but avoid being confrontational - saying ‘no’, ‘that won’t work’.
    • Instead, we ask open questions that will help us work together to explore/test an idea, or suggestion - who, what, when and how, but not why, which can come across as accusatory).
  • Think, then speak– what can I say succinctly that will most help the Board?
  • Feel able to ask the questions that need to be– there is no elephant in the room or, if there is, we’re all working together to get it out.
  • Act strategically– by thinking externally and longer term.
  • Understand that operational delivery is the remit of the CEO by recognising that it’s not our role to manage operations, but to ensure these are led and managed well.
  • Focus on solutions– by talking about the past, only to learn from it, avoid talking about what we can’t do and, instead, focus on what we could do.
  • Welcome differing viewpoints respect each other’s right to hold a different opinion and recognise our own right to do so too.
  • Don’t make assumptions– about who someone is, but rather respond based on the facts/content of what he/she said.
  • All contribute- the contribution of the young, old, or those with lived experience is different to that of the professionals but isn't less than.
    • Everyone has something to give and something to learn.
    • And no one person is allowed to dominate the conversation to the exclusion of others.
  • Are slow to take offence – and quick to apologise, always.
  • Give permission– to everyone else to remind us when we inadvertently stray from the above.
  • Accept our responsibility – for ensuring that everyone is treated fairly, with respect and kept safe from harm.

Staff & Volunteer Code of Conduct Part 1

Charity staff and volunteers must:

  • Act with integrity and honesty.
  • Ensure that you are aware of and comply with the charity’s policies.
  • Undertake any necessary training for your role.
  • Listen to and respect other staff, volunteers, beneficiaries and other stakeholders.
  • Promote relationships that are based on openness, honesty, trust and respect.
  • Treat everyone fairly and without prejudice or discrimination.
  • Ensure language is appropriate and not offensive or discriminatory.
  • Ensure any equipment is used safely and for its intended purpose.
  • Challenge any unacceptable behaviour and report any breaches of this Code of Conduct or any concerns without delay to a trustee.
  • Report any allegations/suspicions of abuse or fraud.
  • Respect everyone’s right to personal privacy and ensure that any personal information is kept secure and not disclosed.
  • Volunteers are not obligated to work at specific times, but if you commit to doing something and are unable to, ensure that the charity is made aware as soon as possible.

Staff & Volunteer Code of Conduct Part 2

Charity staff and volunteers must not:

  • Allow concerns or allegations to go unreported.
  • Develop inappropriate relationships such as contact with children or vulnerable people that is not a part of the work of the Charity or agreed with the trustees.
  • Share your personal contact details (mobile number, email or address) or have contact with a beneficiary or vulnerable person via a personal social media account.
  • Make sarcastic, insensitive, derogatory or sexually suggestive comments or gestures to or in front of anyone.
  • Act in a way that can be perceived as threatening or intrusive.
  • Make inappropriate promises to young or other vulnerable people, particularly in relation to confidentiality.

Grant Funding, Help, and Resources for Charities & Community Groups

  • Funding Finder - with categories for Core Funding and Small Charities & Community Groups.
  • Help Finder – including companies that make donations.
  • Data Finder – find charity information, data and statistics.
  • AI Bunnies – find help and funding for anyone on just about anything.

Quick, simple and very effective. Nearly half our ratings are 10/10.

Find Funding, Free Help & Resources - Everything Is Free

Register Now!

To access help and resources on anything to do with running a charity, including funding, click the AI Bunny icon in the bottom right of your screen and ask it short questions, including key words.  Register, then login and the in-system AI Bunny is able to write funding bids and download 30+ charity policy templates as well.

This Resource Doesn't Constitute Professional Opinion

I am not an accountant, nor a lawyer and no advice can be applicable to all organisations, in all circumstances, so this resource is no more than a guide to understanding.  I've summarised the regulatory guidance and augmented this with my own experience and Internet research, but I am not competent to provide professional advice.  I have included links to the source guidance to enable you to check this yourself and, if you think you might need professional advice, use Help Finder to find pro bono support.

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