Full report of the outgoing Chairman, Advocate Chris Renouf.

This is the first AGM held under the terms of the new Constitution which were approved at last year's AGM and which vested powers in the Committee, rather than members of the Association in general meeting, to approve membership applications and grant applications. We have therefore not had the previous quarterly meetings that were a regular feature of the Association.
The Committee has been extremely busy over the past year considering membership applications and a considerable number of grant applications.
This last year has seen an increase in membership of 21 bringing the total membership to 256.
This year has seen an exponential rise in the number and quantum of grant applications effectively 51 applications for just under £880,000. This compares with £568,892 having been awarded the previous year.
Of the £880,000 applied for there has been a total of £478,985 awarded in respect of 31 grant applications. The other 20 grant applications totalling £400,000 were unsuccessful.
Because applications have far exceeded the income available for distribution to grants this has resulted in closer scrutiny of the applicant's accounts, particularly what reserves are available.
. The Committee has therefore set out clearer guidelines as to how grant applications will be considered including an interpretation of the requirement under the Constitution to consider whether the applicant has demonstrated "need" for the grant.
Approximately 2 years ago the membership approved changes to grant applications from £20,000 over a 2 year period to £20,000 per annum. It may be that we will have to revisit that in the future.
The changes to the Constitution last year were the building blocks for expanding the services to be provided by the Association. Having had a settling in period in relation to the new arrangements with the Committee, going forward I would hope that we can make progress with improving the services to be provided to members by way of coordinating resources and information sharing, providing advice and support services.
The extremely generous anonymous donation of £2.6m which was announced at last year's AGM does contain restricted funds of £250,000 which are to be used for purposes which include the above. The Committee is considering using some of these funds to employ an individual on a contract basis who can review the needs of the Association and suggest ways of achieving the aims of the Association and assisting in putting in place the infrastructure and implementing those arrangements.
The anonymous donation also had a further restricted fund of £320,000 which was specifically to benefit 16 named members who could demonstrate a need for an additional grant over and above any grant from the general funds. All those members have been written to directly and advised of the position and grants of £60,000 have been made to 3 members.
I regret to report that no progress has been made in relation to a Jersey Charities Law. The main reason for this has been that following the extremely sad demise of Advocate Christopher Lakeman, who was on a working party looking at the law, there has been no one driving this matter forward although Deputy Ian Gorst has political responsibility for this.
Similarly, no progress has been made in the introduction of a National Lottery and therefore we still have exclusive benefit of the proceeds of the Jersey Lottery and scratch cards which may be a preferable position to sharing funding with other organisations in the event of a National Lottery being introduced.
Our website which went live last July should be much more user friendly and informative to members. Any feedback from members regarding the website to our administrator, Lyn Roach, would be welcome.
Our events and training officer, David Newman, has again been active this year and, in conjunction with our administrator, Lyn Roach, has organised various presentation and training events, which include accounting, governance, Data Protection Law, Employment Law, Goods & Services Law, Vetting & Barring, Recruitment & Selection, Newsletter in Word and Postal change to size based charging.
Helen Davies who was previously publicity officer has, this year, taken on a changed role of being an initial reviewer of membership and grant applications with a view to raising any query regarding missing information from members before they go to the Committee. It has been an onerous task due to the increased number of applications.
Lynsey Behan has become our publicity officer and, together with Lyn, has recently organised a 'speed dating' event for charities who are looking for volunteers. By all reports the event seemed to be extremely successful and is likely to be repeated next year.
Jenny Hollywood is retiring as Secretary this year after 5 years in the role and on both a personal level and on behalf of the Association I would like to thank her for all her hard work and dedication.
This is my last year as chairman, having served for 3 years. Much has changed during that period and it has been an interesting and challenging time. I would like to thank once again, both personally and also on behalf of members, Lyn Roach for the amazing amount of work she carries out for the Association, sometimes above and beyond the call of duty, and particularly for the friendly and helpful manner in which she does so. In addition, again both personally and on behalf of the Association, I would like to thank the other members of the Committee for their unstinting work throughout the year and for coping with the drastically increased workload with good humour.
If elected, I would hope to continue working with the Committee in a role of Deputy Chairman and progressing the work that has been achieved to date.