Course Content & Structure

How is the course structured?

The course is delivered through a series of online recorded lectures. This online option allows you to purchase the course today and complete it at a time and place that suits you.

CPD Credit: 

Participants will gain 21 hours of structured CPD for the full course. In order for CPD hours to be awarded, participants must work through the content for each module amd mark it as complete.


In order for CPD hours to be awarded, participants must complete a series of short questions at the end of each session.

Course Content

The course is delivered through a series of recorded lectures over 7 modules:

Module 1:
Governance & the Governance Code
Andrew Madden

  • What is good governance?
  • The Governance Code Why? What? Who? The context explained.
  • The five principles of the Governance Code and their sub-principles
  • The three organisation types
  • Seven steps to compliance
  • Follow-up Ongoing self-assessment

Module 2:
Funder Realtionships
Shiela Norden

  • Overview of main statutory funders
  • Corporate and philanthropic funders Developing relationships
  • Fundraising initiatives, events
  • Developing grant applications, including a clear needs statement
  • The importance of terms of contracts with funders
  • Service Level Agreements
  • Reporting
  • Compliance with the Fundraising Code
  • Guest speaker: Jordan Campbell, Dublin Rape Crisis Centre (Ex Ireland Funds)

Module 3:
The Law
Ellen O'Callaghan

  • General legal framework: CRO, Other
  • Charities Act 2009, Charities Regulatory Authority
  • Revenue Commissioners
  • Director responsibilities
  • Data Protection
  • Whistleblowing, the Protected Disclosures Act
  • Employment Contracts
  • Regulation of Lobbying Act 2015

Module 4:
Maureen Kelly

  • General legal framework
  • Obligation to keep books and records
  • Annual audit, controls, expenses, reporting
  • Internal audit reporting lines
  • Internal controls
  • Risk management

Module 5:
Key Board Roles & Relationships
Diarmaid Ó Corrbuí

  • Composition of the board
  • What makes an effective Chair?
  • Other trustees
  • Roles of the Treasurer and other Officers
  • Delegated tasks
  • Individual and collective responsibilities
  • Internal audit
  • Company Secretary
  • Legal requirements
  • Minute taking
  • The Secretary as Custodian of Governance
  • Relationship with the CEO/Staff Boundaries
  • Different levels of decision making
  • Board recruitment, development and retirement
  •  Board self-assessment
  • Guest speaker: Brendan Whelan, Chair, St Catherine’s Association

Module 6:
Sub-committees, Federal & Branch Committees 
Derek O'Reilly

  • Purpose and number of sub-committees
  • Sub-committees v working groups
  • Types of sub-committees
  • Draw up Terms of Reference
  • Board responsibility for final decisions
  • Composition of sub-committees
  • Mix of board and non-board members
  • Federal structure
  • Ensuring autonomy aligns with shared mission
  • Branch structure
  • Ensuring local and regional branches comply with overall rules
  • Guest Speaker: Fran Brennan, CEO Polio Survivors Ireland

Module 7: 
Theory v. Practice
Kieran Murphy

  • What does integrity mean?
  • Conflicts of interest and loyalty
  • The organisation’s reputation
  • Understanding when cultural change is needed
  • Building trust
  • Managing change
  • Recognising and managing conflict
  • Duty of the board to rise to the challenge
  • Role of the Chair in initiating change
  • Doing what is right


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