The Australian Charities and Not-for-profits Commission (ACNC) was established on 3 December 2012 as the independent national regulator of charities. One of the objects of the ACNC Act is to “maintain, protect and enhance public trust and confidence in Australian Not-for-profit sector”. This document presents the findings of research into community trust and confidence in the charities sector conducted by ChantLink on behalf of the ACNC to set baseline measurements to enable the ACNC to track its performance against this object. The research also sought to identify drivers of trust and confidence, and gauge levels of community awareness of the ACNC and expectations of a regulator of charities. The research was conducted in two phases:
- Qualitative research, consisting of six focus groups, aimed at exploring attitudes to charities, factors which influence trust and confidence in charities, and responses to the idea of an online searchable charities register. Four groups were conducted in South Melbourne and two were conducted in Shepparton, Victoria to ensure that regional views were also captured.
- A quantitative survey of the Australian public’s attitudes to charities. The survey was conducted online and 1,624 responses were obtained (including a pilot phase of 60 responses).