Integrity means being honest and fair and consistently acting in line with a moral code.
Behaving with integrity as a management committee member is vital. As a member of the committee you are a steward of the assets of the organisation and accountable for the activities of the organisation. As part of your leadership role, you need to set a standard for conduct which can be mirrored throughout the organisation. Failure to act with integrity will have major, damaging implications for the reputation of the organisation you lead.
The Charity Commission for Northern Ireland in their Running Your Charity document, sets out the responsibilities of Charity Trustees:
‘Charity trustees must:
ensure the charity complies with charity law and with the requirements of the Commission as regulator
make sure the charity acts in accordance with the requirements imposed by other relevant legislation or regulators, for example company law, trustee law, health and safety law, employment law, the Bribery Act and data protection law
ensure that the charity is registered with the Commission when called forward to do so
prepare annual returns, reports and accounts as required by law
ensure the charity does not breach any of the requirements or rules set out in its governing document and remains true to its charitable purposes
act with integrity and avoid any misuse of charity funds or assets
avoid potential conflicts of interest and handle any that do arise in such a way as to promote accountability and transparency.
be familiar with the charity’s governing document and ensure it remains effective
ensure the charity is and will remain solvent
use charitable funds and assets properly and only in furtherance of the charity’s purposes
avoid undertaking activities that might place the charity’s endowment, funds, assets or reputation at undue risk
take special care when investing the funds of the charity or borrowing funds for the charity to use
use reasonable care and skill in their work as charity trustees, including using their personal skills and experience to ensure the charity is well-run and efficient
consider getting external professional advice on all matters where there may be risk to the charity or where the charity trustees may be in breach of their duties.’