Charity Commission to run workshops for charities working in Syria

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The free half-day events in London and Leeds are a response to recent regulatory concerns about charities operating in the country

Screen Shot 2014-04-20 at 19.10.30The Charity Commission will run workshops for charities that work in Syria, after dealing with a number of regulatory concerns about charities operating in the country.

The regulator said the free half-day events, which will be held in London and Leeds, are “strongly recommended” for charities working in or sending money or aid to the area.

They will discuss issues including “trustee duties in the context of working in high-risk environments”, monitoring and accounting for charitable funds, and travelling to and sending aid to Syria and surrounding areas, the commission said.

The regulator has been monitoring concerns about a number of charities working in Syria in recent months.

Earlier this month it opened a statutory inquiry into Al-Fatiha Global after The Sunnewspaper published a picture apparently showing one of its volunteers posing in Syria with two masked gunmen.

At the end of March the commission and the online fundraising platform JustGiving began looking into donations made to the aid charity Children in Deen, which has organised aid convoys to Syria. One volunteer, Abdul Waheed Majeed, who travelled from the UK on one of these convoys, later carried out a suicide attack on a prison in Syria.

Separately, police forces in England made nine arrests in early March in an investigation into charity fraud with potential terrorist links to Syria after money totalling £45,000 was seized at the Port of Dover on 23 December last year.

The commission opened statutory inquiries into two other charities in January and issued a regulator alert in February after the news of Majeed’s attack was reported.

The free events will be held on 24 April in London and 21 May in Leeds, and can be booked through the commission’s website.


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