About our complaints procedure

We hope that in the first instance any concerns can be dealt with informally with the member of staff concerned, or with a member of the executive group. But, if an issue cannot be resolved informally, the process for making a formal complaint is below.

Please note, decisions made by the Community Foundation’s Board on grant awards are final and not subject to any appeal. However, concerns may be raised, or complaints made, about the Foundation’s grant-making process.

How to make a complaint

1. We encourage anyone who has a concern or complaint about any aspect of our service to raise this in the first instance informally with the member of staff concerned or with a member of the Executive group.

2. Formal complaints should be put in writing and addressed to: Chief Executive, Community Foundation Tyne & Wear and Northumberland, Philanthropy House, Woodbine Road, Gosforth, Newcastle upon Tyne NE3 1DD.

3. To help us deal with your complaint appropriately please state in your letter:

  • what the complaint is about;
  • the member(s) of staff or any other people involved;
  • when the issue you are complaining about occurred and whether it is still happening;
  • whether you have spoken to anyone at the Community Foundation informally about your concerns before making a complaint.

4. The letter will be acknowledged by the Chief Executive, normally within 5 working days of receiving it. You will be advised of who is dealing with your complaint and when you should expect a fuller response.

5. The person responsible will investigate the complaint and may contact you for more supporting information or evidence.

6. We will usually respond within 28 working days of receiving the letter of complaint. We will inform you of any action taken or recommendations for further action. If it is not possible to provide a full response within this time, we will tell you and give an interim response, including details of action to take.

7. In exceptional circumstances, if you are not satisfied with the response, you may write to appeal to the Chair of the Board of Trustees. If your complaint involves the Chief Executive, you should write to the Chair of the Board in the first instance.

8. The Chair will acknowledge receipt of your letter within 10 working days where possible.

9. In the case of an appeal to the Chair for a review of the response from the Chief Executive, or where the complaint involves the Chief Executive, an investigation will be carried out by the Chair or another member of the Board acting on their behalf.

10. The Chair will aim to notify you of their decision, which is final, and the reasons for it within 28 working days of receiving your letter.

11. If you are not satisfied with the decision, we are regulated by the Charity Commission for England and Wales and further information about how you can complain can be found at gov.uk/complain-about-charity including any complaints about fundraising that can be reported to the Fundraising Regulator.

12. Foundation trustees, staff and volunteers may also raise concerns under the Foundation’s separate Whistle Blowing Policy.

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