Almond Tree Strategic Consulting helps charities and social enterprises to review and improve their governance including registering new charities and companies, incorporating charities, putting the right policies in place and ensuring the board is effective and adds value.
Good governance is essential to the effectiveness of any organisation, regardless of its size or sector. This is particularly the case in the charity and wider not-for-profit sector where there are extra legal requirements and often a strong moral or values driven purpose behind an organisation.
With the much-increased media and regulatory scrutiny of the sector in recent years, few organisations can now afford to have poor governance; many fail solely because of governance weaknesses, exposing their trustees/directors to significant personal risk.
Governance is essentially about the effective leadership and oversight of an organisation, in particular how it makes decisions, ensures propriety and manages risk. Getting the governing documentation and policy framework right is part of this; but only part. How trustees and directors behave and their effectiveness as a board is equally, if not more, important.
ATSC can help you in all these areas to make sure your governance is structured to meet your needs and obligations, prepare the necessary documents, establish proportionate and effective risk management approaches and to develop the capacity, capability and effectiveness of your board.
We can support you to establish a new charity or social enterprise. This could include registering a new charity, incorporating an unincorporated charity, establishing a Community Interest Company or setting up a trading subsidiary, as well as assistance with the practical tasks necessary to set up a new charity or social enterprise.
Julian, our Director, gained a distinction in Charity Law and Governance from the ICSA (The Governance Institute) and has a foundation qualification in the General Data Protection Regulation.
Here’s what some of our clients have to say about how we helped them improve their governance:
"Almond Tree Strategic Consulting performed a governance and policy review for Buckingham Canal Society CIO, enabled by a grant identified through Community Impact Bucks. We were extremely satisfied at all stages of the process and by the services that were delivered to us. The Trustee board gained enormously in its governance understanding and approaches from the practical contributions suggested in Julian’s report."
Terry Cavender, Buckingham Canal Society, Executive Officer and Trustee
“Julian has been of great assistance to me in my capacity as Churches Together Partnership Development Officer. In the first instance he helped Churches Together set up Camberley Street Angels as a voluntary project and then on 3 occasions since has been instrumental in setting up 3 Charities. The latest of these is The Hope Hub, through his knowledge and experience of the Charity Commission process we set up this Charity in weeks rather than the anticipated months which we felt was a real blessing - thanks Julian”
Karen Kendall, Churches Together in Camberley Partnership Development Officer and Chair of the Hope Hub.
"Almond Tree Strategic Consulting worked with Healthwatch Essex in guiding us through a potentially difficult governance review. I’m pleased to say that Julian was an exemplary consultant throughout this work. He brings a remarkable depth and breadth of knowledge and a close attention to detail, but always provided his advice, guidance and written outputs in a succinct and accessible manner. He worked to time and to budget in delivering the review, and was always willing to ‘go the extra mile’ when necessary. I couldn’t recommend Almond Tree more highly."
Tom Nutt, former CEO of Healthwatch Essex.
“It is truly a pleasure to commend the work of Julian Lomas and Almond Tree Strategic Consulting. Julian arranged for the two organisations that I lead – an Anglican Church and a City Centre Chaplaincy – to become registered charities. He did this with great expertise, consummate ease and amazing efficiency. As a result, the work was done more quickly and we were not charged as much as we expected!”
Revd Paul Morris, Derby City Centre Chaplain and Vicar at St Peter’s in the City, Derby.
"Julian was a superb choice to steer us through the incorporation process. He provided a clear timetable, draft documents and advice on all governance and finance aspects to fit our specific characteristics as a charity. He responded swiftly, fully and patiently to my many queries."
Sarah Tyreman, Treasurer, Group Analytic Society International