National Library of New Zealand
Harvested by the National Library of New Zealand on: Feb 20 2011 at 6:52:50 GMT
Search boxes and external links may not function. Having trouble viewing this page? Click here
Close Minimize Help
Wayback Machine
You are here:   About Us > Role of the Commission
 The role of the Charities Commission

The Charities Commission was established by the Charities Act 2005, which was passed in April 2005. The Commission came into existence as an Autonomous Crown Entity (ACE) on 1 July 2005. (Autonomous Crown Entities are established by, or under, an Act and must have regard to government policy when directed by the responsible Minister).

The Commission started receiving applications for registration as charitable entities when it opened the Register on 1 February 2007. The functions of the Charities Commission, as set out in section 10 of the Charities Act, are to:

  • promote public trust and confidence in the charitable sector;
  • encourage and promote the effective use of charitable resources;
  • educate and assist charities in relation to matters of good governance and management;
  • make appropriate information available to assist persons to make registration applications under this Act;
  • receive, consider and process applications for registration as charitable entities;
  • ensure that the register of charitable entities is compiled and maintained;
  • receive, consider, and process annual returns submitted by charitable entities;
  • supply information and documents in appropriate circumstances for the purposes of the Inland Revenue Acts;
  • monitor charitable entities and their activities to ensure that entities that are registered as charitable entities continue to be qualified for registration as charitable entities;
  • inquire into charitable entities and into persons who have engaged in, or are engaging in, conduct that constitutes, or may constitute,a breach of this Act or serious wrongdoing in connection with a charitable entity;
  • monitor and promote compliance with this Act, including by taking prosecutions for offences against this Act in appropriate circumstances;
  • consider, and to report and makerecommendations on, any matter relating to charities; and
  • stimulate and promote research into any matter relating to charities, for example by collecting and disseminating information or research about charities.  You can learn more by reading our latest Statement of Intent.

Promotion of public trust and confidence
One function of the Commission is to promote public trust and confidence in the charitable sector.
The Commission will do this by encouraging good governance and management practices, by providing educational material and other help. This will enable organisations to be more effective.

Registering and monitoring charities is another way to let the public know that the charities are doing what they say they are doing.

Education and support
The Commission’s advice and help is available to all charities, registered or not. The Commission is also able to offer advice to Government about the charitable sector and may promote sector research.