How We Operate

When people generously donate their money or fundraise for Comic Relief, they trust that we’ll spend their cash wisely. With that trust, comes huge responsibility which we take very seriously indeed.

Ok, here comes the legal bit… Comic Relief is a UK registered company limited by guarantee and a charity registered with the Charity Commission in England & Wales (326568) and with OSCR in Scotland (SC039730).

What that doesn’t tell you is that, as well as being an official UK charity, we’re also absolutely committed to maintaining the best standards in everything we do. When it comes to raising money for example, we’re a member of the Fundraising Standards Board and strive to comply with fundraising best practice. 

Our Grant Making

Our aim is to bring about real and lasting change by tackling the root causes of poverty and social injustice. So, to drive this change, we award grants to incredible projects on the ground that work to give people a leg up, not a hand out.

We are committed to ensuring all the money we are responsible for is genuinely making as big a difference as it possibly can. That’s why we monitor and evaluate the difference our funding is making and every few years, we review our grant-making strategy and adapt it, to ensure we're flexible and responsive to the changing world around us.

  • Better
    Futures

  • Healthier
    Finances

  • Safer
    Lives

  • Stronger
    Communities

  • Fairer
    Societies

Learn more about the themes, vision and principles that guide our UK and International grant making

Meet The Team

We're led by a dedicated, knowledgeable Board of Trustees who meet six times a year and approve every grant we award. They steer our CEO and team of Directors who, in turn, lead Comic Relief’s employees to carry out the day-to-day activities of the organisation. Running alongside them are our Honorary Trustees, plus a number of boards and committees who give us vital advice and support. Meet these brilliant people below.

Honorary Trustees

  • Claudia Winkleman
  • David Tennant
  • David Walliams
  • Davina McCall
  • Duncan Bannatyne
  • Emma Freud
  • Fearne Cotton
  • Professor Ian Goldin
  • James Corden
  • Jennifer Saunders
  • John Bishop
  • JK Rowling
  • Matthew Freud
  • Miranda Hart
  • Patrick Kielty
  • Reggie Yates
  • Sir Steve Redgrave

Boards and Committees

UK Grants Committee Members

  • Diana Barran - Chair (Trustee)
  • Anthony Kendall (Director, Social Action Radio)
  • Ben Cairns (Director, Institute for Voluntary Action Research)
  • Cliff Prior (Chief Executive, UnLtd)
  • Eleanor Logan (Voluntary Sector Consultant)
  • Ken Logue (Atlantic Philanthropies)
  • Kevin Cahill (Chief Executive, CR)
  • Michele Settle (Director of Marketing, CR)
  • Tristia Clarke (Trustee) (Executive Director of Commercial, TalkTalk Group)

International Grants Committee Members

  • Theo Sowa - Chair (Trustee/Independent Consultant)
  • Anne Aslett (Elton John AIDS Foundation)
  • Celia Petty (Evidence for Development)
  • Chukwu-Emeka Chikezie (African Foundation for Development)
  • Ezra Limiri Mbogori (Executive Director of Akiba Uhaki)
  • Jim Hytner (Trustee)
  • Kevin Cahill (Chief Executive, CR)
  • Michele Settle (Director of Marketing, CR)
  • Myles Wickstead (Former British Ambassador to Ethiopia)

Finance and Risk Committee

  • Mike Harris - Chair (Trustee and Financial Consultant)
  • Alexis Chapman (Partner, Minerva Partners)
  • Peter Samengo Turner (Vice President, Barwa Capital UK Ltd)
  • Robert S Webb (Trustee)

Investment Committee

  • Mike Harris - Chair (Trustee and Financial Consultant)
  • Bal Samra (Director, BBC Rights and Business Affairs)
  • John Keating (Partner, Chantrey Vellacott DFK)
  • Laurence Newman (Consultant, ex Trustee)
  • Oliver Bolitho (Head of Asia Ex-Japan, Goldman Sachs)
  • Peter Clark (Investment Director, Ingenious Asset Management)
  • Philip Mastriforte (MD, Trillium Partners Limited)
  • Rupert Morley (Group MD, Sterling International Movers)
  • Sam Morse (Head of UK Institutional Equities, Fidelity Investments International)

The Commercial and Technology board

  • Tristia Clarke – Chair (Trustee) (Executive Director of Commercial, TalkTalk Group)
  • Anna Bateson (Marketing Director EMEA, You Tube at Google)
  • Jana Bennett (President, BBC worldwide networks & global BBC iPlayer at BBC Worldwide)
  • Charles Garland (Chief Operating Officer Syco Music)
  • Steve Leach (Chairman of Fetch, Outside Line and IQ Chocolate)
  • Theo Paphitis (Chairman of Ryman and Chairman and owner of Robert Dyas and Boux Avenue)
  • Cilla Snowball (Trustee) (Group CEO & Group Chairman AMV BBDO)
  • John Linwood (Chief Technology Officer, BBC)
  • The Commercial and Technology board are also the directors of Comic Relief Ltd

Remuneration and Nominations Committee

  • Imelda Walsh - Chair (Trustee)
  • Colin Howes (Trustee)
  • Mike Harris (Trustee and Financial Consultant)
  • Peter Bennett-Jones