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Ask the regulator your burning questions

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Interview with ACNC Commissioner the Hon Dr Gary Johns 

Governance Institute’s Not-for-profit Governance Forum is fast approaching this October. NFP professionals attending the forums in Sydney and Brisbane will have an exclusive opportunity to talk directly to the regulator ACNC Commissioner the Hon Dr Gary Johns. He’s gearing up for the event and encourages you to “Ask me anything”.  

We sat down with the Commissioner to discuss his upcoming session at the Forums.  

We see you’ve launched a new Governance Toolkit for charities. What are the benefits you see for charities using these tools?  

Governance is something everyone talks about broadly. But you really need to focus in on the particular problems in your charity or NFP.  

If you want advice on keeping good records, keeping your mind on the job or concentrating on your charitable purpose and proving you have a record of what you’re doing, then we have useful tools for you on our website.  

What are the biggest governance issues facing NFPs right now? How can governance professionals respond? 

Governance professionals need to know the law the governance principles sitting in the ACNC Act. And where charities are operating offshore or sending money offshore, there are some new external conduct standards which you need to apply.  

Get to know the rules of the game, so you’re better informed to help your charity or NFP. 

How does complying with the new ACNC External Conduct Standards help charities minimise the risks that come with operating overseas? 

We’re not going to ask you to send us lots of paperwork. But we remind you to be mindful of what you’re doing. You should be able to prove to yourself that your funds are being applied for charitable purposes. For example, if someone said to me, “we work in war zones, we can’t keep a good record because things need to be secretive”, I’d ask that person how they know the money isn’t being used to buy weapons. The questions we ask of you, are the questions you should be asking of yourself, to reassure that you’ve checked out your partners and you know the money is being used for charitable purposes. 

If I find out something is going on, I’ll need to ask you to provide evidence that you have assessed the risks in your offshore work.  

Hear more at Not-for-Profit Governance Forum 

Gain practical advice on how to integrate good governance and risk management within your NFP at both a strategic and operational level at Governance Institute’s oneday forum for NFPs 

The NFP sector is diverse and faces greater governance expectations. Good governance and strong leadership are essential to the strength of your NFP organisation during these challenging times of significant sectoral change 

Hear from NFP experts, who will challenge your current thinking, encourage innovation and share solutions that support you with your operational and governance challenges. And network with fellow NFP professionals on the key issues facing the sector 

Upcoming Not-for-Profit Governance Forum events 

QLD — 10 October 

NSW 11 October  

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