Please click here to read OSCR’s COVID-19 Guidance for Charities

Charities and Coronavirus: An update from the regulator

30 Mar 2020

 

All charities should read OSCR's COVID-19 guidance for charities, which brings together the information you need to know during this time and highlights other organisations who may be able to offer support.

The following topics are covered below:

The COVID-19 situation is fast moving and developing regularly.  This web page will be updated to reflect any changes that occur so please revisit it regularly to be kept up-to-date.

 

How to contact and send information to the Scottish Charity Regulator (OSCR)

Like many other organisations, the Scottish Charity Regulator (OSCR) is operating with fewer resources due to the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.

All of our staff are working remotely and we no longer have staff immediately answering telephone calls.

Our COVID-19 guidance for charities and general FAQs contain the answers to most queries.  If you can't find the answer on our website, you should send your query to info@oscr.org.uk.  If you want to speak to someone on the phone, the best method would be to include your phone number in an email. 

If you are unable to send an email and really need to speak to someone, you can still call our office number and leave a message.  If you call us, please include your phone number and we will get back to you.  It will take longer than usual for us to answer queries and process any applications.

We are also unable to go into the office to collect and process any mail coming through by post. 

If you have sent something to us by post and it is urgent, then please email us at info@oscr.org.uk and include a digital copy of the mail you have sent or information about your query or concern.  Again, if you need to speak to someone, please include your phone number.

 

 

What is coronavirus (COVID-19)?

There are many sources of information about COVID-19.  All charities should read this guidance from the Scottish Government.

The guidance includes advice for non-healthcare settings, and has tips that apply to people working in hospitality settings, leisure facilities, entertainment venues and premises used by community groups.  NHS inform will give you the latest public health advice.

One of the most important things is the basic hygiene measures that you can take to help prevent the spread of the infection.  These include:

  • routine cleaning and disinfection of frequently touched objects and surfaces such as telephones, keyboards, door handles, desks and tables
  • basic hand washing is highlighted as the most effective way of preventing the spread of infection.  Hand hygiene promoted by ensuring staff, contractors, service users and visitors have access to hand washing facilities and alcohol-based hand rub, where available
  • crockery and cutlery in shared kitchen areas should be cleaned with warm water and detergent and dried thoroughly
  • ensuring food such as crisps and sandwiches should not be left open for communal sharing unless individually wrapped.

 

 

COVID-19 guidance for charities

For charities, there are some specific concerns that we have become aware of, and we have covered these in our COVID-19 guidance for charities.

This guidance brings together information you need to know during this time and highlights other organisations who may be able to offer support.

It is split into the different parts below to help you find the information you need easily.

  1. Contacting OSCR
  2. Funding and finance
  3. Charity meetings and governance
  4. Reporting to OSCR: charity accounts and notifiable events
  5. Registering a charity and making changes to your charity
  6. Information for cross-border charities
  7. Fraud
  8. Safer giving and Fundraising
  9. Volunteering
  10. Sources of help and advice

We’ve based this structure on the most common queries we have received during the COVID-19 pandemic and the information will be regularly updated as the situation develops. If you feel something is missing from this guidance, please contact info@oscr.org.uk. 

General frequently asked questions for charities can be found here.

 

 

OSCR, ACOSVO and SCVO working together

OSCR, the Association of Chief Officers of Scottish Voluntary Organisations (ACOSVO) and the Scottish Council for Voluntary Organisations (SCVO) are committed to working together to support the sector through the COVID-19 pandemic:

 

 

Gathering information for the sector

To help influence and shape support for the sector, SCVO is asking organisations to share information about the challenges they are facing as a result of COVID-19 and the potential impact.  Please email a summary to experience@scvo.org.uk. Any information would be greatly appreciated.