Social Enterprises are being encouraged to take a more active role in the deliverance of public services and as a result the general public are gradually becoming more aware that there are many not-for-profit organisations, like CCH Community Interest Company, which are not registered charities.
The Community Interest Company structure was created for entrepreneurs who want to set up a company which works for the benefit of the community. The intention is that these companies use their profits and assets solely for the public good. Before the creation of this business model, limited companies faced a number of difficulties in ensuring that their assets were dedicated to public benefit; it would have been necessary to apply for charitable status in order to do so. This, however, is not always appropriate if an organisation wishes to run as a social enterprise and enjoy the benefits of working as a company.
Rather than being regulated by the Charity Commission, a CIC is regulated by the Government Appointed CIC Regulator. However, we believe that, despite not being regulated by the Charity Commission, a CIC should be as equally transparent as any charity. As our fundraisers can be spotted throughout London, collecting monetary donations from the public, it is only fair that the general public have access to information about where their money is going. A Community Interest Company does have – as any organisation has whether they are charitable or not – administration costs. It is also able to have salaried directors, but any one would be mistaken if they thought that charities were run by people who work as volunteers. This does not entail, however, that Community Interest Companies which are run efficiently cannot put forward the same percentage as any charity does to the cause they were set up for.
Community Interest Companies and all other Social Enterprises deserve as much support from the general public as charities do, particularly as they are pushed further into the limelight as the providers of public service.