Help with making an application to be registered as a charity in Northern Ireland


The Commission has produced a range of guidance which will help charity trustees in their application for registration:

In addition, the Commission will offer:

  • registration workshops for each tranche
  • signposting to helper groups and other resources (click here or scroll down for list of helper groups)
  • case studies
  • a podcast to inform organisations about the registration process and the public benefit requirement (available soon) .

Helper groups

A number of groups and umbrella organisations have volunteered to provide practical support to individual organisations going through the registration process.

Support will be available in a phased approach. This support will vary depending on the capacity and remit of each helper group and may range from providing access to a scanner or the internet to assisting with support on completing the online process where training, resources and time permit.

Phase one: practical help through access to a scanner or the internet

If the person within your organisation who is completing the application does not have access to a scanner or to the internet in order to complete the online application process, the first point of contact should be other trustees, volunteers or members of staff within your organisation. If you are still unable to gain access, you should contact your local library to see if they have any of these facilities available. Most libraries do. You can find details for all libraries in Northern Ireland by clicking on the link: Additionally, some helper groups are able to provide access to a scanner or to the internet. Please refer to the table below for information on relevant helper groups.

Phase two: support to complete the application process

Some helper groups will be able to provide support to assist organisations in drafting and submitting their online application. For example, a helper group may support you to use the purposes and public benefit toolkit to draft your public benefit statement, which is one of the sections on the online registration system.

The Commission will provide helper groups with training and materials to support them in delivering this service to other organisations.

Future phases

We anticipate that helper groups will continue to disseminate information to the organisations they work with and support. This is important to ensure that individual organisations have access to the most up to date and relevant guidance, and are aware of key developments in charity registration and regulation.

Finally, some helper groups may provide a prompt to organisations to give them advance notice of when their annual returns are due or indeed support them in the completion of returns.

Are you interested in becoming a helper group?

If your group is interested in becoming a helper group, please contact Aoife Morrison, Policy Development Manager on

How do I contact a helper group?

If you need support in completing your application to register as a charity in Northern Ireland, then please consider contacting the helper group relevant to your organisation to see if they can provide the assistance you need. For example, if you work with individuals from ethnic minorities, you may wish to contact NICEM.

Contact details can be found below along with information on the support each organisation can offer and who they work with.

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