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As most dioceses and provinces are registered as separate charities, trustees need to be aware of the legal requirements within which they have to operate as a registered charity. These may seem daunting at first, but following the guidelines is straightforward and will make the running of your diocese or province easier in the long run. If you are unable to find the information you require, or need any further guidance, the staff at Mary Sumner House are available to help you.

Card Processing

If your diocese accepts payment by card (Visa, MasterCard, AMEX etc), follow this guidance to be compliant with Payment Card Industry Data Security Standards (PCI DSS for short). 

Charity Reporting

This document has been created to set out and explain the key rules and requirements in this area. The information contained is broadly relevant to dioceses within the UK, albeit in some minor respects Scotland departs from this. Dioceses in the province of All Ireland should refer to local guidance.

Data Protection

Every diocese holds data about members, volunteers, donors, supporters and beneficiaries which needs to be held in accordance with current Data Protection legislation. All the information you need can be found in this section.

Employing Staff

If you are employing someone in a paid capacity, this information will help you with what you need to do. 

Food Safety

Guidance on what you need to do to meet Food Safety regulations.

Gift Aid

Gift Aid is a simple way to increase the value of donations without additional cost to the donor. The Gift Aid Scheme is explained here.

Health & Safety

Although primarily for employees, organisations like Mothers' Union have legal obligations towards their members and volunteers, as well as it being good practice to treat volunteers with equal consideration when it comes to issues of health and safety. Find out what you need to do here.


There are many different types of insurance cover - some required by law, some generally considered to be necessary and others entirely optional. 

This document offers guidance on obtaining the appropriate insurance cover for your diocese or province.

Making Toys

Handmade toys, such as knitted teddies distributed through Mothers' Union, need to meet the requirements of the Toy Safety Directive.  Guidance for dioceses to ensure these safety standards are being met, as well as the procedure to attach CE labels to toys can be found here.

Retention of Records

A guide to the appropriate retention period for information you may have in your diocese or province


Safeguarding guidance and for all Mothers' Union dioceses in Britain and Ireland

Trustee Eligibility - England and Wales

All diocesan trustees are required to complete this form to declare their eligibility to act as a charity trustee in England or Wales.

Trustee Eligibility - Scotland

All diocesan trustees are required to complete this form to declare their eligibility to act as a charity trustee in Scotland.

Model Code of Conduct

It is good practice for diocesan trustee boards to agree a Code of Conduct at the start of each triennium.  This Model Code of Conduct can be adapted for local use.

Conflict of Interest

Decisions made by a diocesan trustee board must be in the best interests of Mothers’ Union and not influenced by outside interests. A Conflict of Interest policy, agreed by the board, will ensure that any conflicts of interest are dealt with appropriately.

Letter of Assurance 2020

The Letter of Assurance for 2020 to be completed, signed and returned to Mary Sumner House