Drumellan Community Association, a group which works to promote health and social well being in Drumellan and the wider Brownlow area, has become one of Northern Ireland’s first registered charities.
The announcement was made as the Charity Commission for Northern Ireland officially began compulsory registration of all charities in Northern Ireland.
Drumellan was one of a group of charitable organisations which volunteered to test drive the Commission’s online registration system and processes, prior to the beginning of full registration.
The test phase has now completed and the Commission has finalised its online system and registration guidance, with full registration having commenced on Monday 16 December 2013.
Bernie Burns, speaking on behalf of Drumellan Community Association, said: “As a community group with 38 years of experience behind us we are delighted that we can now add ‘registered charity’ to our list of accomplishments.
“We are also delighted that we are one of the first charities to be registered - a landmark for any organisation.”
Tom McGrath, Chief Commissioner, commented: “I would like to congratulate Drumellan Community Association on becoming one of Northern Ireland’s first registered charities.
“I am also delighted to announce that today the Commission will begin full charity registration for the first time, marking a new chapter in the history of charity regulation in Northern Ireland.
“Registration will bring huge benefits to the charity sector, and to the people of Northern Ireland, many of whom give their time, money and knowledge to help support the work of the very charities we will be registering.”
It is estimated that there are between 7,000 and 12,000 charities currently operating in Northern Ireland so registration will be a managed process with organisations called forward by the Commission in tranches.
If you would like to find out more information on registration visit www.charitycommissionni.org.uk