Update on safeguarding, professional conduct, and independent review

20 June 2023
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In this blog, Michele Welch, Head of Professional Conduct, discusses the formation of our Professional Conduct Committee, the new Safeguarding & Whistleblowing trustee, and provides an update on Independent Review.

With spring having almost come and gone so quickly this year, I have been thinking about the seasons, change, and how the right preparation is needed for a garden to suddenly burst into life.  In my experience, I often find the nature of safeguarding work and organisational change similar to that of gardening – there's lots of hard work at the outset preparing the ground and nurturing the greenshoots before you get to see the produce and gains of the garden.  

Over the last few months I feel that a great deal of progress has been made in my work here to take forward Professional Conduct for the Chartered Institute and the fundraising community. We’ve been doing the right things, in the right way – preparing the ground and getting ready to bring in important updates and involve new people on our shared vision for a safe and supportive environment for fundraising.    

Announcing the Chartered Institute’s new Safeguarding and Whistleblowing Trustee

As part of previous changes to our Governance, a specific role was created for a Safeguarding and Whistleblowing trustee to ensure that we always have always have appropriate representation and expertise at Board level.

Our current Safeguarding and Whistleblowing Trustee, Isobel Michael, has reached her last term on the Board and will be stepping down later this year. In preparation for Isobel’s term coming to an end, we started a search in March 2023 to recruit a new Trustee to lead on safeguarding and whistleblowing and I'm delighted to announce Ngozi Cadmus has been selected.

Ngozi is a Psychotherapist, the Founder of Frontline Therapist and HerNext, Approved Mental Health Practitioner, Social Worker and Business Strategist. Ngozi’s extensive skills, experience and knowledge are greatly welcomed by us all at the Chartered Institute as is her commitment to creating a diverse, safe and inclusive fundraising sector. Isobel and Ngozi will be working together over the next five months to ensure a consistent and supportive induction and handover and it will be my absolute pleasure to work with them both to continue our work on Professional Conduct in fundraising.  

Establishing a new Professional Conduct Committee

One of the key developments to embed and take forward our work in this area has been to establish a new Professional Conduct Committee of members and experts who will work with us on a long-term basis for continued improvement and change across the fundraising community. 

The Committee will lead and advise the Chartered Institute’s approach to embedding professional standards across our membership, as well as ensure that people involved in the complaints and disciplinary process are treated fairly and are properly supported. 

We began our recruitment process for the Professional Conduct Committee back in March this year, and I am very excited to announce that we have recruited a full Committee - one that is experienced and highly skilled. More information about the Committee and its members will be shared in a dedicated event later this summer where we will introduce the Committee to our members and have opportunities for Q&A.  

If you want to read more details around the terms of reference for the committee, you can do so here.  

An update on progress of the Independent Review

The Independent Reviewers have completed the main phase of the work through a wide range of interviews, reviewing as well as analysis and consideration of all the evidence. 

They are currently working to present their analysis and findings to the Independent Working Group and then the Board of Trustees.  Based on what we know now and progress so far, we expect we will be able to publish the findings, recommendation, and learnings of the review by the end of summer. 

If you’d like to talk to me about any aspect of our work in these areas, or have any questions or concerns, please feel free to get in touch with me at any time directly at michelew@ciof.org.uk.

You can also raise an issue, submit feedback, or register a complaint anonymously at any time through our confidential reporting tool Talk to Spot.

Michele Welch
Michele Welch
Head of Professional Conduct
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