Cambridge Aid Society
Any complaint or sign of dissatisfaction about the performance of the charity or the behaviour of any of its Trustees (including suspicions of fraud) should be referred to the Chair of the Trustees (unless the Chair is implicated in the complaint, in which case a Trustee who is not implicated should take the lead).
Recording a Complaint
Complaints may be received by letter, telephone email or in a face to face meeting. In all cases, it is essential that the details of the complaint be recorded accurately and as soon as possible after receipt.
The complaint should be acknowledged with a holding response in writing within 5 business days of receiving by the person investigating the complaint. There should be regular communication with the person or organisation who made the complaint and the final response should take no longer than 6 months to resolve. It should be resolved quickly and constructively and should take into account the Society’s obligations to the Charity Commission for serious incidents – see definition below taken from Commission Guidance on ”How to report a serious incident in your charity”
Other Trustees should be notified of any complaint, what is being done about it and preferably given the opportunity to comment before the complaint is resolved.
What is a serious incident?
A serious incident is an adverse event, whether actual or alleged, which results in or risks significant: harm to your charity’s beneficiaries, staff, volunteers or others who come into contact with your charity through its work (who are collectively referred to throughout this guidance as people who come into contact with your charity through its work)
loss of your charity’s money or assets
damage to your charity’s property
harm to your charity’s work or reputation
For the purposes of this guidance, “significant” means significant in the context of your charity, taking account of its staff, operations, finances and/or reputation.
Charities commission website April 2019
For more information please visit https://www.gov.uk/guidance/how-to-report-a-serious-incident-in-your-charity
If the person or organisation making the complaint is not happy with the charities response they should contact the Charities Commission to escalate the complaint here, https://www.gov.uk/complain-about-charity
A file should be kept containing a record of the complaint and its resolution (whether satisfactory or not). The record should be kept for seven years from the date of the event complained about.
Adopted 27th September 2019.
(Updated from August 2015).
To be reviewed in September 2022.