Characteristics of a charitable services institution

A charitable services institution (CSI) is an organisation that has the following characteristics:

  • It is a charity registered by the Australian Charities and Not-for-profits Commission (ACNC)
  • It is an institution that would be a public benevolent institution (PBI) except that it also undertakes one or both of the following:
    • promoting the prevention or control of diseases in human beings (health promotion activities) but not as their principal activity
    • promoting the prevention or the control of behaviour that is harmful or abusive to human beings (harm prevention activities), but not as their principal activity.

These organisations do not fall into the DGR categories of health promotion charity, harm prevention or PBI.

Examples of CSIs

Example 1

Caring Charities is an institution that is a charity whose objects are relieving poverty and improving health in relation to a particular disease. It carries out its objects by providing hostel accommodation for the homeless, and by providing health information about the disease to health professionals, carers and the public. The providing of health information accounts for 45% of its activities. It also prepares and publishes research papers about poverty, but these activities are minor in extent and importance.

Caring Charities would qualify as a public benevolent institution except that it provides health information about the disease. Because this is not its principal activity, Caring Charities is eligible for endorsement under the CSI category.

Example 2

Nalla Care is an institution that is a charity whose objects and activities are operating a homeless shelter, running community health activities and operating a kindergarten. Running the community health program amounts to 20% of Nalla Care's activities. Nalla Care is equally engaged in the other two operations - the homeless shelter and the kindergarten.

Nalla Care's health promotion activities are not the organisation's principal activity and its homeless shelter is consistent with being a PBI. However, its kindergarten is not providing benevolent relief and is not minor in extent and importance. This means Nalla Care would not be a PBI once the health promotion activities were disregarded. Therefore Nalla Care is not a CSI.

    Last modified: 12 Oct 2016QC 26359