helping charities helping people

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Welcome to ACO

The Association of Charitable Organisations (formerly Association of Charity Officers) is the national UK umbrella body for Trusts and Foundations that give grants and welfare support to individuals in need. ACO was founded in 1946.

Helping Individuals in Need - Front cover and contents of the publication

Helping Individuals in Need. A Guide to good practice for charities

This toolkit is intended for those running a charity that gives grants to individuals in need. Authored by Caroline Aldred and Clementine Cowl, the idea for this guide came out of the questions that arise frequently at ACO meetings such as ‘our trustees want to offer loans to applicants, but can we do this and what are the legal implications?’ or ‘how should we manage home visits?’ We hope that this guide will assist in finding answers to these questions.

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The funds managed by ACO members are discretionary and seek to complement and enhance welfare support provided by local and central government. Our members operate in the UK and across the globe. In recent years many funds have reviewed their operations, researching patterns of need and developing more strategic programmes of assistance

ACO provides support to its members through:

  • Networking: building peer networks providing opportunities for members to share and get advice and support
  • Raising standards: promoting good practice, tackling problems together and offering solutions
  • Lobbying and campaigning: giving our members a voice by responding to government consultations and raising awareness about the work of our member organisations
  • Information: providing members with up-to-date information tailored to their specific interests through our monthly newsletter "Charity News Review" and policy briefings
  • Online services: our website and member forums provide opportunities to seek and share advice and experience

ACO Network Events in 2019

ACO Grant Making Forum South and Under Fives meetings

The next Grant Making Forum and Under Fives meeting takes place on Tuesday 26th February 2019 from 11am-1pm at the British Dental Association, 64 Wimpole Street London W1G 8YS and is open to all ACO charity members.

Shehnaaz Latif, Lead Consultant at NCVO Charities Evaluation Services

What difference does your grant make?

This interactive session will provide guidance on impact assessment, theory of change development and other considerations for grant makers wanting to demonstrate the difference made through their funding. Take this opportunity to share your impact story and consider proportionate ways to gather information from grantees. Examples will be given and we will do some practical work to explore what might work best in your setting.

Paul Mitchell of Paul Mitchell Investment Reviews Limited

How to get the best deal from your Fund Manager

Tips on how to manage the relationship with your fund manager including an insight into fees, benchmarks, pooled funds, ethical screening and "free lunches".

We break for lunch at 1pm so bring a sandwich and stay for the Under Fives meeting, for solo workers and small teams.

We are grateful to BDABF for supporting these events

Save the Dates!

ACO Annual Conference 2019

ACO Annual Conference will be held on Friday 10th May 2019 at One Great George Street, London SW1

ACO is grateful to EdenTree Investment Management for supporting this event

ACO AGM 2019

ACO Annual General Meeting will be held on Wednesday June 12th 2019

Grant Making Forum and Under Fives 2019
  • Tuesday 26th February
  • Thursday 13th June
  • Wednesday 11th September
  • Monday 25th November

Our Corporate & Associate Members

CaSE Insurance
Charles Stanley
Connect Assist
Eddie Green Graphic Design
EdenTree Investment Management Ltd
HSF Health Plan
Icaris Sentinel
Investec Wealth & Investment
James Hambro & Partners
Kingston Smith LLP
Law Express
Newton Investment Management
Quilter Cheviot
Ruffer LLP
Russell-Cooke LLP
Sayer Vincent
Smith & Williamson
The OT Practice
Wilsons Law LLP
Yoke & Co

Note ACO does not explicitly promote corporate members or favour particular providers

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