Sector organisations have been broadly positive on the social investment tax relief announced in the Chancellor's Autumn Statement, but with some big questions marks over the detail. In the Autumn Statement released by George Osborne and the Treasury this morning, social investment tax relief will be available for equity and certain debt investments in charities, community interest companies and community benefit societies, and for investment in new social impact bonds where the special purpose vehicle is structured as a company limited by shares.
3 in 4 adults (76%) would not donate to a charity which had failed to submit its financial accounts and returns to the Charity Commission, according to an independent ICM poll commissioned by the charity regulator and the Fundraising Standards Board (FRSB), the self-regulatory body for UK fundraising. Christmas is a traditional time for giving and charities work hard to raise money during this period to fund their work. 85% of people give directly to charity at Christmas, donating an average of around £40 to the good causes they care about.
A volunteering programme run by the National Council for Voluntary Organisations has displayed ‘an impressive capacity’ to help unemployed people into paid work, according to an independent evaluation. The Big Lottery Fund-backed Volunteering for Stronger Communities (VSC) programme provides targeted support for unemployed people who face significant barriers to employment.
The Prime Minister will announce the UK has now attracted £2 billion in private sector investment in life sciences since the launch of the government’s strategy 2 years ago, adding further evidence that the long-term economic plan is working. He will say that scientific breakthroughs hold the key to slowing down or even preventing the onset of the illness and he wants the growing UK life sciences sector to lead the way. Building on the Autumn Statement and in a further boost to the UK life sciences sector, the Prime Minister will set out:
Also at today’s G8 dementia summit, Alzheimer’s Society chief executive, Jeremy Hughes, will pledge to spend at least £100 million on dementia research in the next decade. This sustained commitment and long-term thinking will help change the face of dementia research and Alzheimer’s Society is calling on governments and others to follow suit. Dementia is our biggest health and social care challenge. Affecting millions globally, it has overtaken cancer to become the most feared condition amongst over 55 year olds.
Millions of people are being left behind, and the charities that help them are being shut out from David Cameron’s faltering Big Society project, according to a new report published today. The Big Society Audit 2013, released by think tank Civil Exchange, warns that a radical review of Big Society thinking is needed and says that, despite the rhetoric:
The Charity Commission is not regulating charities effectively, according to the National Audit Office’s report The regulatory effectiveness of the Charity Commission. The spending watchdog recognises that the Commission carries out important and necessary work and that its independent status and expertise are highly valued, but finds that there is a gap between what the public expects of the Commission and what it actually does. The NAO has concluded that the Commission does not do enough to identify and tackle abuse of charitable status.
Minister for Civil Society Nick Hurd has launched a consultation on strengthening the powers of the Charity Commission. The consultation will run until 12 February 2014. It will examine how the Charity Commission tackles serious abuse and how the range of criminal offences that disqualify people from being a charity trustee could be extended. The proposed changes include: Extending the range of criminal offences which automatically bar a person from acting as a charity trustee
The Charity Commission welcomed the Cabinet Office consultation, published yesterday, on amending and extending its powers to tackle abuse and mismanagement in charities and says it supports the proposals. The regulator says it is vital that its existing powers are strengthened. The Commission is required under charity law to identify and tackle mismanagement and abuse in charities but weaknesses in its current powers are undermining its ability to be an effective regulator.
The charity Directory of Social Change has challenged the conclusions of a National Audit Office report on the Charity Commission. The National Audit Office released its report on the regulatory effectiveness of the Charity Commission, in the wake of the Cup Trust scandal and subsequent investigations by the House of Commons Public Accounts Committee.
The UK is top of the developed world for giving money to charity, with 76% of Britons giving to good causes in a typical month. This increase in financial giving makes the UK the sixth most charitable nation in the world, up from 8th, in the World Giving Index, the biggest annual global survey of giving. The survey also found that Britons are becoming more generous with their time. Volunteering levels rose by three percentage points from the previous year to 29%.
The Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF) is today announcing a £7m of investment in two of the UK’s most wonderful buildings: Durham Cathedral and Peterborough Cathedral. Both are due to celebrate important anniversaries in the next five years. HLF’s investment will enable the display of original 13th-century copies of the Magna Carta alongside other artefacts in celebration of the 800th anniversary of the charter in 2015. The Monks’ Dormitory and Great Kitchen, some of the most intact medieval monastic rooms in England, will be restored to house an exhibition showcasing the history of the cathedral and its monastic community.
The popular trend for judging charities according to the proportion of income spent on overheads is ‘useless’, according to a new report published today by NPC. In Keeping account: A guide to charity financial analysis, the charity think tank and consultancy explains how funders and others can gain a meaningful understanding of a charity’s financial position, and any risks it might be facing. The report talks about topics in the headlines this year—from charity chief executive pay and the importance of unrestricted income to charity survival.
UnLtd, HEFCE, universities and entrepreneurship support organisations across England will build a sustainable system of support for social entrepreneurs.The Higher Education Funding Council for England (HEFCE) is today launching a £2 million programme to strengthen and broaden support for social entrepreneurship and social enterprise in universities and higher education colleges across England. The programme, part of the UnLtd SEE Change, Social Entrepreneurship in Education initiative, will be delivered by UnLtd, the leading provider of support to social entrepreneurs in the UK.
The Charity Commission has today published new Regulations and guidance for trustees on adopting a total return approach to the investment of the charity’s permanent endowment. New legislation, which comes into effect on 1 January 2014, will amend the Charities Act 2011 and allow the trustees of permanently endowed trusts to adopt a total return approach to investment without seeking prior permission from the Commission. The regulator has today published the Regulations which set out in detail the rules that charities must follow to adopt and operate a total return approach.
The Charity Commission has endorsed the latest version of the ACRE Good Practice Quality Standard quality system. The regulator's Quality Assessment Endorsement Programme aims to increase the governance standards and accountability within charities by encouraging umbrella bodies to develop a set of quality standards that their members commit to. ACRE is the national umbrella body of England’s 38 rural community councils, who make up the ACRE Network.
The Electoral Reform Society (ERS) today launches a public consultation on the future of the political party. As party membership continues to fall and people’s trust in politicians spirals ever downwards, the ERS is asking members of the public as well as party activists, politicians and experts to share their vision of the party of the future. The consultation consists of three questions: What are political parties for? What does the party of the future look like? What can parties do now to reconnect with people?
The UK public have already donated a DEC record of £6 million via tablets and smart phones to assist those whose lives have been devastated by the Philippines typhoon. The record-breaking figure has been donated over a much shorter time period than for previous DEC appeals, including the East Africa food crisis, and the total given now stands at £65 million. Donations from mobile devices have overwhelmingly come from Apple users, who have donated a staggering £4.4 million using their iPhone or iPad.
The Disasters Emergency Committee (DEC) today announced that their appeal for people affected by the Philippines typhoon has raised a staggering £65 million. DEC member agencies and their partners have now delivered aid to more than 700,000 people across affected areas of the Philippines, using both funds raised by the DEC and support from many other sources. DEC chief executive Saleh Saeed said: “The response by the UK public to this appeal has been nothing short of extraordinary.
More than 2.3 million votes were cast by the public for their favourite good cause - an overwhelming response to the 2013 Lloyds Bank Community Fund and the 1,332 good causes shortlisted in England and Wales. In each community of four local good causes, the two with the most votes will now be awarded £3,000 and the other two will each be awarded £300 to deliver projects and services as diverse as funding anti-bullying workshops in Brighton or restoring a community river bank to its natural state in Andover. Every good cause on the shortlist received votes - cast online, in branches or by SMS during September and October 2013.
National retinitis pigmentosa support and research charity RP Fighting Blindness, has announced it is in the process of transferring its operations to a new legal body - a Charitable Incorporated Organisation (CIO). The planned formal transfer date is December 31 2013. Currently constituted under a Deed of Trust dating back to 1976, it had been felt by the board of trustees and the chief executive that the charity was in need of constitutional modernisation.
Today marks the launch of the Spirit of 2012 Trust, an organisation established with a Big Lottery Fund endowment of £40 million. It has the challenging and exciting task of helping to deliver a lasting social and community legacy from the London 2012 Games. The Spirit of 2012 Trust has four key aims: Harness the energy, commitment and organisation of the volunteering legacy of the London 2012 Games for community benefit; build on the energy, creativity and positive spirit inspired by the London 2012 Games to galvanise and inspire groups of people into social action.
New analysis of the ONS Longitudinal Study by Birkbeck College and the think-tank Demos reveals a growing trend of ‘comfort-zone segregation’. The ESRC-sponsored research found 100,000 ethnic minority people left London for other parts of England and Wales between 2001 and 2011. However, they are mainly moving to diverse, mixed-minority wards rather than to the 80 per cent of England & Wales which averages 96 per cent white.
Charity shops act as a life support on Britain’s high streets, providing a number of benefits for local businesses, residents and communities, according to a new report by think-tank Demos. An in-depth study into the value of charity shops found they keep people shopping on their high street and drastically reduce the number of empty shops, challenging the perception that they fuel high street decline. Charity shops are also in the frontline of the fight against unemployment.
Donations to charity from 16-24 year olds in Northen Ireland have more than doubled from 2011, up by over £5.00 per year, according to NICVA’s 2013 survey into individual giving in Northern Ireland. The survey found that donations from people aged 16-24 increased from an average of £3.60 in 2011 to £8.68 in 2013, possibly due to increased donations via mobile phones and social media. Overall the number of people in Northern Ireland claiming to give to charity has increased slightly, up 7% from 66% in 2011 to 73% in 2013. The average donation remains around the same at £17.65.
Donations to the Disasters Emergency Committee Philippines Typhoon Appeal have topped £60m since the launch two weeks ago. Over 13 million people have been affected by the devastating typhoon. Praising the response, the DEC chief executive Saleh Saeed said: “The support of the British public over the last two weeks has been astounding in helping us reach another milestone figure. "People across the UK have dug deep into their pockets to help some of the millions of people affected by this terrible tragedy.
Charity chief executives have recently found themselves under the spotlight in one area more than any other; their salaries. Plenty has been said about the public objecting to anyone at a charity earning over £100k a year, but we have been looking at how we got to this stage. The data, drawn from the country’s top 50 most recognisable charities, looks back at the last five years of CEO pay and what drives it. It discovered that CEO salaries have broadly increased at the same rate as charitable income and that there has been something of a rebalancing in the sector, with higher salaries increasing far more slowly than the lower ones.
Threadneedle Investments has today announced it will launch the Threadneedle UK Social Bond Fund in partnership with Big Issue Invest, the social investment arm of The Big Issue. The Fund aims to achieve both an investment return and a positive social outcome by investing in fixed income securities of organisations which support socially beneficial activities and economic development.
The Silver Line Helpline is launching across the UK today, thanks to a grant from the Big Lottery Fund of £5million over two years, to help every older person who needs information, friendship, advice and protection from abuse or neglect. It is the only free, confidential, 24 hour service for older people and as well as the helpline, trained volunteers will become Silver Line Friends providing regular friendship calls. As well as the momey from the Big Lottery Fund, the other founding partners of The Silver Line are Comic Relief, Swiss Re and BT, who made the pilot phase of The Silver Line possible.
The Community Investment Coalition has urged the House of Lords to put an end to the payday lending misery being experienced by millions of hard up households by backing an amendment to the Banking Reform Bill that would establish a proven regulatory regime for the industry. An amendment tabled for debate at Report stage of the Bill by the Liberal Democrat peer, Lord Sharkey, would require the Financial Conduct Authority to establish regulations based on the Florida, USA, model of payday lending regulation, and which would...
Every year ACEVO’s Pay Survey acts as a bench mark for the sectors progress. This year’s shows that there is still progresses to be made to the gender pay gap within the sector and encouraging diversity within charity boards. The results show: the pay gap between male and female CEO’s has increased to 18.6% of the median male salary compared to last year’s figure of 12.1%. Median male CEO salary has increased to £67,000 (£62,000 in 2012) compared to £54,530 for female CEO’s (£54,500 in 2012)
NAVCA has published the findings of their sixth quarterly tracker survey, which was undertaken in October. The findings indicate that NAVCA members are experiencing a greater level of stability than in previous surveys, although overall members feel prospects are more likely to worsen for both themselves and local charities and community groups rather than improve. The findings come from NAVCA’s sixth quarterly survey of members.
Many payday lenders in Scotland are breaking the promises they made last year to clean up their act – according to new research published today by Citizens Advice Scotland. One year ago this week, the main payday lenders published a voluntary Code of Conduct in which they acknowledged some wrongdoing in the industry, and set out a number of cast-iron guarantees to improve their operations so they offered fair and responsible lending in future. CAS has been asking payday loan clients all year to report their experiences, and in our report card today we can show that lenders have in fact broken most of the pledges in their own code.
Every £1 invested in volunteering in the NHS yields services worth £11 in return, estimates a new report by The King's Fund. Volunteering in acute trusts in England: Understanding the scale and impact is based on the first national survey of volunteering in hospitals. The survey found that there are nearly 500 volunteers in the average acute trust, equating to more than 78,000 volunteers in hospitals across England who contribute more than 13 million hours per year. Based on current NHS pay rates, this translates to a return of £11 for every £1 invested in the training and management of volunteers.
A ground-breaking £2m fund has re-opened to entrepreneurs across the North. The Social Incubator North scheme invites budding entrepreneurs to submit their business idea for its second round, with the chance of up to £25k loan investment and up to 80 hours of tailored one-to-one business support, peer learning, networking and access to business premises for the successful applicants. All ideas must come with a social backbone, such as offering employment or training to vulnerable members of the community or delivering a service with green credentials.
The Big Lottery Fund has welcomed the start of its Triennial Review announced by the Cabinet Office today. The review is being conducted in accordance with the requirement for all Government Departments to review their Non Departmental Public Bodies (NDPBs) at least once every three years. In common with other Triennial Reviews of NDPBs, the review will examine whether there is a continuing need for the functions performed by the Big Lottery Fund (the Fund), as well as the structure, efficiency, and effectiveness of the organisation. In order to make a full assessment, the review will take into account the views of people who have an involvement with or interest in the Fund as a grant making organisation.
The Charity Commission has today published two revised model schemes for Common Investment Funds (CIFs) following a consultation this summer. The revised schemes are needed to ensure that CIFs are compliant with the implementation of the Alternative Investment Fund Managers Directive (AIFMD). A CIF is a collective investment fund in which only charities can participate. Charity law gives the Commission the power to establish these funds as charities.
Leading investment house, ING Investment Management (ING IM) is predicting that 2014 will continue to see global growth acceleration as the US and Japanese economies pick up pace. At its Annual Outlook Conference held in London this morning, the investment manager predicted the US will grow above its potential thanks to less fiscal tightening, private sector healing and monetary support. Meanwhile, it foresees that Abenomics will succeed in reflating Japan although ING IM does believe that more should be done to unlock corporate savings and highlights that a consumption tax hike will remain a downside risk.
National charity Contact the Elderly has appointed a new CEO, Mary Rance, to further its unwavering mission to tackle acute loneliness and isolation among older people across England, Scotland and Wales. Contact the Elderly organises free monthly Sunday afternoon tea parties for small groups of older people within the homes of volunteers – providing a regular and vital friendship link every month. As the charity gears up for its Golden Jubilee celebrations in 2015, Mary Rance will focus on increasing the charity’s network of volunteers, partners and funders to extend its vital companionship link with lonely older people.
Fifty thousand 16 to 18-year-olds are taking 'dead-end' courses that will end with no job and will turn them off education and training, a policy think-tank has warned. The Institute for Public Policy Research (IPPR) says huge numbers of late teens were facing being NEET(not in education, employment or training) by studying low-level courses that offer little or no job preparation or incentive toward further study. Almost 250,000 teenagers who left school without good qualifications are studying these courses, but IPPR says that up to a fifth would be better off on an apprenticeship or in stronger forms of pre-apprenticeship training.
The Big Lottery Fund today announced it will make available up to £5 million through its International Communities programme to support charities working to help communities in the Philippines rebuild their lives following the devastating impact of Typhoon Haiyan. The Big Lottery Fund cannot make general donations to emergency appeals. Nor does it believe its funds are best used for immediate disaster relief. Instead, it will make up to £5 million available to UK based charities, working with communities in the Philippines, to help the long term process of rebuilding lives and livelihoods.
Communities which lost millions of pounds which were diverted to fund the Olympics were not even given a mention in a House of Lords Olympic legacy report which was published today. In 2007 the last Government diverted £425 million from the Big Lottery Fund – which funds small community groups and charities across the UK – to pay for infrastructure on the Olympic Park. The current Government has reneged on the promise to repay, saying the money will only come back from sales of assets on the park site; a scenario which will see hard-pressed charities wait until the 2030s to be repaid.
The UK has pledged a further £30 million to support the UN and Red Cross emergency appeals for the Philippines, Prime Minister David Cameron has announced today. The funding will be used to deliver vital supplies to more than 500,000 victims of the Typhoon Haiyan and support UN and Red Cross teams working on the ground as they coordinate the international relief effort. He also announced that the UK will deploy a C130 to help with the relief efforts. The C130 will assist DFID, the UN and national authorities with the internal delivery of humanitarian aid and the movement of personnel.
As part of a drive to communicate its core belief in the positive effects of investing in people, Skills Third Sector is rebranding to Skills Effect. The new name reflects the organisation’s new focus on developing innovative, sector-specific products and services that will make skills and training more accessible and relevant to the growing 163,000 charities and not for profit organisations in the UK. Skills Effect shair, Jane Slowey, said: “Many organisations in our sector are having to do more for less. At a time when funding is diminishing, it is vital that civil society organisations make the most of the people they have – whether they are paid employees, volunteers or trustees.
At the start of the second week since Super Typhoon Haiyan made landfall, the DEC has received donations of £33 million for the Philippines Typhoon appeal. Speaking on behalf of the agencies which make up the DEC, its chief executive Saleh Saeed, said: “The generosity of the public is yet again surpassing all expectations. The aid agencies represented by the Disasters Emergency Committee never take such kindness for granted but this shows that when people are really suffering, the UK responds.
The Charity Commission has today published inquiry reports into five of the charities that were under investigation as a result of double defaulting on their accounts. It has also announced the new phase of the class inquiry. The first phase of the inquiry focussing on ‘double defaulting’ charities with an income over £500,000 began on September 20 2013, when the class inquiry opened. Failure to submit annual documents to the Commission is a criminal offence and the Commission says that it amounts to mismanagement and/or misconduct in the administration of a charity.
Unite, the country’s biggest union, has today launched a new credit union service, in a bid to take on payday lenders, encourage saving and offer members finance without fear. The new credit union service, launched at Unite’s sector conference, arrives in the week the union released figures showing the extent of Britain’s cost of living crisis. Independent research shows that the disposable income of Unite members has fallen by £129 a month, with households being forced to borrow an average of £660 over the same period.
The chairman of the Charity Commission says the regulator of charities is improving its approach to dealing with serious problems in charities, especially where there is a suspicion of deliberate abuse. Speaking at Mansion House as part of a lecture on Charity and the City, William Shawcross said the regulator is already taking steps to sharpen its regulatory approach to serious wrong-doing, including by using its statutory powers more frequently. These include: powers to suspend or remove charity trustees, or to require trustees to provide information to the regulator.
Investment boutique Cerno Capital Partners gave a fascinating insight into investment trends at its latest invetment seminar held at Selwyn College, Cambridge University. Jame Spence, managing partner at Cerno, in a talk enitled Asset Allocation in a Confusing Era – What normalisation means for investors, expanded on the historical context of the current financial situation and Cerno's defining idea of normalisation. Spence began by identifying three periods of investment, citing the Barclays Equity Gilt Study that 1982-2008 was The Great Moderation; 2008-2012 The Great Crisis; with 2013 onwards being something of a question mark.
Only one in five (21%) funders say they are not measuring their own impact and 72% plan to boost their impact measurement over the next three years, according to a new report launched today by NPC. However, one in ten funders (10%) remain unconvinced about the importance of measuring their own impact. Funding impact, published by charity think tank and consultancy NPC, also found that while most funders collect some information about impact from the charities they support, many are not making the most of this data.
ACEVO has announced that Asheem Singh will be joining the organisation as the new director of policy. Singh has a wealth of policy experience from numerous high profile organisations, most recently the Impetus Trust where he was the director of policy and Strategy, but he has also held senior roles at ResPublica Think Tank, Centre for Social Justice and for Nick Hurd MP.
The Disasters Emergency Committee (DEC) has today launched an appeal for people affected by the devastating Philippines typhoon. The organisation said its members, which are the UK’s leading aid agencies, are already responding to the crisis but the scale of destruction is such that there is huge unmet need. Typhoon Haiyan – said to be the strongest ever to make landfall – has rendered roads impassable and airports out of action which is severely hampering relief efforts, the DEC said.
Seven out of ten (72%) young people with chronic health conditions felt at risk of unemployment during the recession, while 97% attend work when ill due to fear of job loss. This is according to a report by Fit for Work UK, written by The Work Foundation, and published today. The findings reveal that negative social attitudes towards chronic conditions, in schools and amongst employers, are leaving many young people at risk of low earnings and exclusion from the labour market.
The Charity Commission has encouraged people wishing to help victims of typhoon Haiyan in the Philippines to check the Commission’s website and give to established, registered charities. It says charities such as the members of the Disasters Emergency Committee, which has launched a dedicated appeal in response to the typhoon, are experienced in providing emergency help during humanitarian disasters.
CFG is concerned that 22,000 small charities that are due to auto-enrol their employees into pension schemes from 2015 onwards could be underestimating the scale of the task. Findings from a recent CFG survey show relatively high levels of confidence in the sector, with 63% of respondents due to auto-enrol from 2015 saying they are confident in their capacity to implement it. However, this appears to be at odds with the practical experience of those who have complied to-date.
A new report launched today by the charity think tank and consultancy NPC encourages charities working in the visual impairment sector to talk to and work with commercial providers — such as national optician’s chains, pharmacies and private healthcare firms. This would increase awareness of eye health and improve eye test accessibility for vulnerable groups, and older people in particular. In sight: a review of the visual impairment sector finds that, while blindness is the disability people fear most, the general public are simply not taking good care of their eyes.
New research published today says that local businesses make a limited but important contribution towards supporting voluntary and community organisations. Local Business Giving: between the raffle prize and a new source of funding, by the Centre for Regional Economic and Social Research (CRESR) at Sheffield Hallam University, is notable because there is little published research on local businesses support for the voluntary sector. This is in contrast to the considerable attention given to the role of large businesses in supporting charities.
20 UK charities are now better able to measure their achievements thanks to a Community Service Volunteers (CSV) and Coalition for Efficiency (CfE) programme aimed at improving charitable services through better impact measurement. The Measuring the Good programme, funded by Esmée Fairbairn and the Garfield Weston Foundation, provided 20 charities with structured, facilitative support from senior volunteers from the private and public sector to help the charities focus on their mission and improve their process of impact measurement.
Sourcing new funding streams to compensate for reductions in government support is the biggest challenge for charity executives, but competition for funds is getting more intense, according to the latest survey by accountancy firm Baker Tilly. Almost half (47%) of the charities taking part in Baker Tilly’s Funding Challenge survey said that government funding had decreased over the last 12 months reflecting the prolonged period of austerity, and almost two thirds (63%) said that sourcing new funding streams was their biggest challenge.
The Vulnerable and Disengaged Young People Fund, a new funding stream through the Cabinet Office Centre for Social Action, has up to £2m to help grow ambitious social action programmes to inspire England’s most vulnerable young people. It will be administered by the Social Investment Business on behalf of the Cabinet Office. Organisations looking to create or further develop inspiring social action programmes for young people can apply for a development, evidence or scale-up grant from 8 November until 6 December 2013.
More organisations are creating and advertising ‘micro-volunteering’ opportunities, according to new research from NCVO. Demand for such volunteering opportunities, often tasks that can be completed online or on smartphones, is also likely to grow, the research concludes, as it provides a more accessible form of volunteering which is increasingly sought after. Growth will also be driven by technological development.
The Charity Commission for England and Wales and The Scottish Charity Regulator have welcomed the sector’s enthusiastic response to its consultation on the draft SORP. Over 1,600 charity sector representatives took part in the 26 consultation events held by the SORP making body, hosted by or in conjunction with umbrella and professional accountancy bodies and accountancy firms across the UK and Republic of Ireland.
The 447,000 people whose benefits were stopped or ‘sanctioned’ since October last year have been left at risk of severe hardship and risk of homelessness – often through no fault of their own – warns homelessness charity Crisis. Figures released by the Department for Work and Pensions, reveal that since October 2012 447,000 people had their benefits stopped. Of these, 215,000 were jobseekers who saw their benefits stopped for at least a month – with some potentially facing three years without their main form of financial support.
Rathbones’ Charities Team today announces its funds under management have hit £2.5bn in the year to 30 September, up 35% from last year. Its client base grew 13.4 per cent in this same period. The growth comes on the back of Rathbones’ decision to lower its minimum size criteria for a segregated portfolio two years ago. James Brennan, business development director for Charities at Rathbones, said: “We’ve seen growing interest from a range of charities, including groups which have previously not explored investing, but have become frustrated as inflation diminishes their cash deposits.
Despite good governance being essential for the successful running and management of charities, many UK charities have very different approaches to governance according to a new survey from Trustees Unlimited. Trustees Unlimited questioned 1,300 trustees to find out more about governance practices in charities and found that whilst 36% of charities discuss governance at most board meetings, a third discuss it just once a year and 15% never talk about it. The research also highlighted a lack of training on governance matters in some UK charities and a poor induction process for new trustees.
CHANGING LIVES, the newly renamed charity The Cyrenians, has agreed to incorporate a significant proportion of Platform 51’s specialist women’s and girls’ frontline provision through a transfer. The move, which takes place with immediate effect, involves the transfer of 64 staff from Platform 51 to CHANGING LIVES, working in projects from Middlesbrough, Doncaster and Liverpool, to Nottingham, Wolverhampton and Wales. The changes will help to ensure the continuing provision of services for girls and women across the country as Platform 51 changes its focus from frontline provision.
NAVCA’s AGM was held today at the RUSI building in Whitehall and NAVCA published its annual review and accounts for 2012-13. The accounts show NAVCA made a small surplus in the year and also gave over £400,000 in grants to its members. The annual review highlights key successes including securing free DBS checks for volunteers, ensuring local healthwatch are community led organisations and opposing the payment of charity trustees. In 2012-13 NAVCA made a small surplus of £6,000. Income was up from £1.8million in 2011-12 to £2.6 million in 2012-13, although this included a £1 million grant for the Building Health Partnerships project.
The winners of this year’s Compact Awards have been announced at a ceremony held by Compact Voice last night in Westminster. The ceremony was hosted by Simon Blake, chair of Compact Voice, and Nick Hurd MP, minister for Civil Society. The Compact Awards recognise excellent partnership working taking place between different sectors. Announcing the winners, Nick Hurd MP, Minister for Civil Society, said: "The winners of the 2013 Compact Awards all display thoughtful and collaborative working, showing just how much can be achieved when people work well in partnership.
The government has agreed a short pause to Part 2 of its controversial Transparency of Lobbying, Non-party Campaigning and Trade Union Administration Bill in response to criticisms raised by charities, campaigning groups and community organisations. A motion tabled in the House of Lords by crossbencher Lord Ramsbotham, which proposed to pause the Bill and submit Part 2 to a Select Committee for proper scrutiny, was met with a commitment by government to pause Part 2 for 6 weeks. In that time, the government suggest they will only make minor changes to the spending threshold above which campaigns must register with the Electoral Commission, and caps on spending in individual constituencies.
Futureversity, the East London charity which is also registered as Tower Hamlets Summer Education and works with young people to increase their potential, has announced the appointment of a new chief executive officer, Michele McKendry. Futureversity is a local youth charity based in Tower Hamlets, working to support 11-25 year olds with educational, skills-based courses to help bridge gaps between school, training and employment. Its employment programme, Job Ready, has a 61% success rate of turning NEETs to EETs. McKendry comes from the UK branch of the Children’s Hospital Trust where she was head Of development, and has over 20 years experience of working for youth charities.
ACEVO has responded critically to the government’s proposals to reform judicial review; specifically, the proposals to restrict the ability of representative organisations such as charities to lodge judicial review cases on behalf of those they serve. Sir Stephen Bubb, CEO of ACEVO, said: “These proposals represent an un-evidenced, ideologically-driven attack on civil society’s ability to hold public authorities to account on behalf of citizens. They would deny access to justice to members of vulnerable and marginalised groups who rely on charities to represent them and ensure their rights are upheld. The government must go back to the drawing board and abandon these disastrous plans.”
The Charity Finance Group today submitted comments on new financial reporting guidance for charities. The Charity ‘Statement of Recommended Practice’ (SORP) is the principal document informing charities on how they should report income, spending and activities to the general public. The Charities SORP has not been updated since 2005 and the new version had to incorporate major changes in the accounting and reporting framework for the UK and Ireland.
The Charity Commission, is marking the fourth annual national Trustees’ Week (this week: 4-10 November) by urging charities to offer training and support to their trustees. Survey research by the Charity Commission reveals that a third of charity register applicants claimed their organisation did not offer training and support to trustees. By contrast, just under two thirds (63%) did offer this to some extent. Trustees are the people with ultimate responsibility for directing the business of their charity. As such, it is important they are provided with resources, support and training to help them run their charities effectively.
Jordan is denying entry to desperate Syrian refugees who have been forced to sleep rough and scavenge for food by the roadside, said Amnesty International in a new report today. Despite claims by the Jordanian authorities that its border has remained open to those fleeing the conflict in Syria, Amnesty’s research indicates that at least four categories of people are being denied access to Jordan. These are: those lacking identity documents, unaccompanied men with no demonstrable family ties in Jordan, and Palestinian and Iraqi refugees who have been living in Syria.
The way a key government mechanism to improve public services has been implemented has often been ‘seriously flawed’, a report today argues. Payment by Results (PbR) has suffered from crude implementation, meaning opportunities to improve public services, such as mental health treatment or drug rehabilitation, are being missed, the report said. The report, for the National Council for Voluntary Organisations, finds general support for PbR as a concept. However, some charities believe PbR contracts have been brought in by commissioners as they are ‘political flavour of the month’ rather than as part of a coherent strategy to improve services.
Leading investment boutique Cerno Capital today held a key investment conference at Oxford University looking at four themes institutional investors, including charities, should take into account when investing. The four themes, centred around the idea of normalisation, are: that core government bonds will prove a poor investment; falling correlations increase the opportunity set for bottomup investors; inflation protection is a noble aim but not reliable; and danger remains in emerging markets.
The Commission on Civil Society and Democratic Engagement, chaired by Lord Harries of Pentregarth, publish their final report on the Lobbying Bill today. The report has been written in three weeks following extensive consultation around England, Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland. The Commission was established and administered by a broad coalition of NGOs, with full support for the report from all 50-plus organisations.
The Fundraising Standards Board has welcomed the Charity Commission's decision to publish whether a charity is signed up to the FRSB on its register, announced today. Alistair McLean, chief executive of the Fundraising Standards Board, said: "This is a significant move that recognises commitment to self-regulation as a key measure of accountability and transparency for fundraising charities. Inclusion on the register will also help to build awareness that fundraising is regulated, strengthening public confidence in charitable giving.
Advanced NFP has announced the Advanced Halo Awards, a new annual awards programme. These are designed to recognise best practice amongst organisations using its specialist fundraising and membership CRM solutions. The winners of the 2013 awards were announced at NFP World which took place yesterday, covering the four categories for the awards as follows:
The Independent Commission for Aid Impact (ICAI) has published a report today on the Department for International Development’s Support to Agricultural Research. The overall rating for the programmes we examined is Green-Amber. DFID has committed £350 million to agricultural research in the period 2010-15 to improve food security and tackle hunger in developing countries. Activities range from advanced science research in UK universities to projects developing and testing innovative ways to get research products (such as new seeds or animal vaccines) into use by farmers.
NAVCA has highlighted the threat to smaller charities and community groups presented by the Lobbying Bill. NAVCA has published their briefing on the Lobbying Bill to accompany the 2nd reading of the bill in the House of Lords today. NAVCA fully agrees with the campaign being led by NCVO, Friends of the Earth and other charities that the bill as currently drafted is entirely unworkable and may limit charities’ and other groups’ ability to speak out on issues of concern.
The Big Lottery Fund is today announcing a £3.85 million partnership between the UK’s biggest music and entertainment brands and major youth sector players to use music to bring positive changes to the lives of millions of young people across the UK. UK Youth, Capital FM and its charity arm Global Charities, BPI, The BRIT School and The BRIT Awards, will come together to help transform the lives of young people in some of the most deprived areas across England, Scotland, Wales & Northern Ireland. Working with young people aged 14 to 24 years old, the project partners will create and deliver a programme of community outreach and skills development with the aim of empowering and inspiring participants to fulfil their potential and achieve personal goals.
A third sector expert has warned that charities are missing out on important supporter care opportunities, after a survey of charity leaders has revealed that only one in five believe they are effectively engaging with their supporters using digital platforms. The survey found that eighty per cent per cent of charity leaders reveal they are not building relationships with supporters digitally. The survey has also found that less than 20 per cent of charities are using platforms such as text messaging, live-chat and online channels, to communicate key campaign messages to their supporters.
GPs need to play a stronger role in co-ordinating care for people with long-term or chronic conditions, according to a new report from The King’s Fund. Co-ordinated Care for People with Complex Chronic Conditions, funded by Aetna and the Aetna Foundation in the United States, compares five UK-based case studies with a proven track-record in providing care co-ordination in primary and community care settings. It identifies the critical success factors that enable effective care co-ordination and how these might be transferrable to different settings, in the United Kingdom and elsewhere.
The Charity Commission has published the results of the consultation on proposed changes to the Annual Return and about the information displayed on the register of charities. Along with an analysis, the regulator has also announced the key changes charities should expect for 2014. The changes include a number of new questions that charities will be required to answer in the Annual Return for 2014. In addition, the Commission will publish information of interest to the public which it already holds, or which is held by others, on the online register of charities.
A British journalist, who has investigated the secret use of torture in Northern Ireland, has called for the UK authorities to reveal the truth about past abuses as part of a wider process to “deal with the past” in Northern Ireland. Ian Cobain, author of Cruel Britannia: A Secret History of Torture, says that it is not clear that the full truth about the use of torture in Northern Ireland has been made public, and called for the British government to open its files as part of any new “truth recovery process” in Northern Ireland.
Liberty has published its response to the Government’s 'irresponsible and unworkable' new Immigration Bill, unveiled in the House of Commons. The campaigning group said that rather than attempting to fix an immigration system blighted by inefficiency and error, the Bill paves the way for even greater dysfunction and complexity. It added that its provisions would lead to a nightmarish bureaucratic system of immigration control in the community – embroiling private landlords, members of the clergy, bank workers and airline staff.
The latest London's Poverty Profile shows the shifting pattern of poverty in the capital. The new report shows the profile of London poverty is changing: poverty continues to shift from workless to working households and from social housing to the private rented sector. Unemployment and underemployment are high and levels of low pay are increasing, which along with welfare reforms are hitting poor Londoners hard.
A leading expert at Cass Business School has said that hedge funds gaining control of the Co-operative Bank will mean the bank "drops the focus on doing good to focus on doing well for shareholders". Commenting on hedge funds gaining control of the Co-operative Bank, Andre Spicer, professor of Organisational Behaviour at Cass Business School, said: "It is unlikely that the Co-op will maintain its ethical approach in the long run. A leading expert at Cass Business School has said that hedge funds gaining control of the Co-operative Bank will mean the bank "drops the focus on doing good to focus on doing well for shareholders".
The UK’s leading voluntary adoption agencies have joined forces to encourage more families to come forward to adopt children in care who are considered as ‘harder to place’. Their appeal comes as a new scheme ‘It’s All About Me’ (IAAM) is launched in Westminster today.
The charity Business in the Community is calling on UK employers to remove the default criminal-record disclosure tick box from job application forms – as part of its ‘Ban the Box’ campaign launching today to address the discrimination faced by job-seeking ex-offenders. 9.2 million people – one in five of the population – in the UK have criminal records, yet research suggests that three-quarters of employers admit to using a criminal conviction to discriminate against an applicant, meaning that millions of job seekers are blocked from employment.
Excellence in fundraising within Germany, Spain, Ireland, South Africa and the Philippines was celebrated last night at the Global Awards for Fundraising ceremony, hosted by the Resource Alliance during its International Fundraising Congress. The Global Awards for Fundraising recognise quality and creativity of organisations and individuals in four categories:
Commercial experience is essential if a fundraiser is to become a chief executive, according to research by Australian marketing consultancy, More Strategic, presented today at the Resource Alliance's International Fundraising Congress (IFC). The research comprised interviews with 12 former fundraisers from around the world who had moved up through the ranks to become chief executive or executive director.
The 2013 Charity Times Awards were celebrated last night at a glittering and sector leading event in London attended by over 650 of the sector’s most senior people. Andrew Holt, editor of Charity Times, said: "It was an outstanding evening. The quality of the shortlist this year was the highest ever. The Charity Times Awards show the sector at its very best: each shortlist is a high quality mark in excellence. One of the judges remarked to me, the awards shortlist makes you proud to be part of the sector."
Citizens Advice Scotland fear that official figures showing the numbers of people using foodbanks are only the tip of the iceberg, and that the problem is much bigger under the surface. The CAS statement comes on World Food Day today, as the Trussell Trust reveals that 350,000 people across the UK had to use its foodbanks in the last 6 months.
NCVO has announced the members of the Executive Pay Inquiry that will draw up guidelines for charity trustees when deciding on pay levels for senior executives. The Inquiry will explore the arguments about what are appropriate levels of pay for charity senior executives, and how these levels should be arrived at. It will also explore the relationship between salary levels and public trust and confidence in the sector as a whole.
The charity sector is not yet taking full advantage of the opportunities presented by data, NPC has said in a new report published today. In The power of data: Is the charity sector ready to plug in? the charity think tank and consultancy finds that charities are not making the most of the different types of data sets available to them— including open data and big data— despite their potential to help them understand the issues they work on better, operate more effectively, and improve their understanding of results and impact.
The Charity Commission has launched a new series of audio podcasts, designed to help charity trustees understand their duties under charity law. The three podcasts of this autumn series introduce Commission guidance on:
Protecting your charity from harm from extremists. Nick Donaldson, the outreach manager at the Charity Commission, is joined by a newly appointed trustee of a London university to discuss a case study that highlights the risks facing charities from extremism.
The Association of Charitable Foundations’ Annual Conference saw the launch of new research highlighting the unique role that charitable foundations play in the area of social investment. The briefing, Charitable trusts and foundations’ engagement in the social investment market, is the first investigation into the approaches and motivations of trusts and foundations with regard to social investments.
To coincide with National Ethical Investment Week, a leading investment manager has set-out how investing ethically across rapidly growing global environmental markets appeals to charity investors and challenges the myth that ethical investments tend to underperform. Hubert Aarts, managing director, listed equities at Impax Asset Management, said: "An ethical investment is simply an umbrella term for any investment that takes environmental, social and/or governance issues into consideration.
Top business executives and corporations should set an example and encourage giving to charity at work, according to evidence presented to a major inquiry into stimulating support for charities. A summary of evidence presented to the Growing Giving Inquiry, launched by the Charities Aid Foundation (CAF), includes calls for senior business leaders and large and small firms to get involved with fundraising events, payroll giving and other charity initiatives in the workplace to encourage employees to take part.
As part of its commitment to transparent banking, Charity Bank - the bank that lends solely to charities, community organisations and social enterprises using deposits from individuals who support this mission – is inviting its depositors to visit some of these organisations to see for themselves the social impact personal savings can have in local communities.
An interactive online skills market place for charities and social enterprises to find the training and tools they need to develop their workforce, is being launched.
Supported by co-investment from UKCES Growth and Innovation Fund, the Skills Platform will be the first comparison site for the sector giving organisations easy access to sourcing skills, comparing offers and working together to find relevant, well priced and local training.
Lloyds Banking Group’s Lloyds Scholars programme has won the prestigious Education category in Lord Mayor’s Dragons Awards which recognises community engagement in London. The Lloyds Scholars Programme opens doors to students who otherwise might not have had the financial backing to attend our leading universities including University College London.
The Charity Commission has upheld its June 2012 decision not to register the Human Dignity Trust as a charity. The HDT works to support individuals who seek to challenge legislation criminalising consensual sexual activity between same sex adults in certain countries. It applied to register as a charity in July 2011, and requested a decision review after the Commission refused registration in June 2012.
Northern Ireland is set to be hit harder by welfare reform than any other part of the UK according to research commissioned by NICVA’s Centre for Economic Empowerment. When the reforms have come into full effect the research estimates they will take £750m a year out of the Northern Ireland economy, equivalent to £650 a year for every adult of working age. This compares to an average of £470 a year across Great Britain.
A debt charity is calling for tighter regulations to protect vulnerable people from rogue payday lenders. New findings from debt counsellors Christians Against Poverty show four out of five (78%) people taking out a payday loan did so to afford food. Worse still, one in five people weren’t even asked if they had a job.
The Fundraising Standards Board has welcomed plans to introduce a new compliance regime for doorstep face-to-face fundraising, announced by the Public Fundraising Regulatory Association. Alistair McLean, chief executive of the independent regulatory body, the Fundraising Standards Board, said: “Doorstep fundraising is an important technique for so many charities, it can be extremely effective and yield long-term committed donors.
Charities spending above 3% of the value of their long term investment portfolios each year face the material risk of eroding the real value of their capital, according to a new white paper: Sustainable Portfolio ‘Withdrawal Rates’ for Charities launched today by Newton Investment Management. Newton’s paper found that even a small over or under-distribution can have a significant effect on the real value of a portfolio over 20 years.
A group of investors responsible for over a trillion of investment worldwide has written to the Chancellor on the day of his speech to the Conservative Party Conference calling for a decarbonisation target to be included in the Energy Bill. They argue that the lack of a target inhibits investment decisions and negatively impacts the UK’s ability to attract the capital needed to update its ageing infrastructure.
A diverse coalition of prominent charities, campaign groups, academics, think tanks and online networks has today launched an independent commission in response to the Government’s Lobbying Bill. The commission will investigate the impact of the proposed legislation on civil society following concerns that it will have a chilling effect on charities and campaigning organisations speaking out on issues of public concern ahead of general elections.
Human influence on the climate system is clear and this is evident in most regions of the globe, a new assessment by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) has concluded. The IPCC says it is extremely likely that human influence has been the dominant cause of the observed warming since the mid 20th century. The IPCC notes the evidence for this has grown thanks to more and better observations, an improved understanding of the climate system response and improved climate models.
Charities that have failed to file annual reports, accounts and returns for two or more years are being formally investigated, the chief executive of the Charity Commission will announce today at the regulator’s Annual Public Meeting. Failure to submit annual documents to the Commission is a criminal offence. The Commission says that it also amounts to mismanagement and/or misconduct in the administration of a charity and is often associated with wider mismanagement and poor governance, including the misapplication or abuse of charitable funds.
The Cabinet Office has lent its endorsement to the Philip Baxendale Awards’ Public Service Mutual of the Year prize to celebrate the most impressive group of former public sector workers who have spun out into an employee-led mutual to provide exemplary public services. Nominations for the award are now open, and will be judged on the basis of how nominees have transformed their services to improve outcomes for citizens.
Any piracy charges against activists on the Greenpeace ship Arctic Sunrise would be manifestly unfounded, Amnesty International has said after the Russian authorities released a statement on the case yesterday indicating they may prosecute those onboard the vessel. Russia’s Investigative Committee, a state agency responsible for the investigation of serious crimes, said in its statement that it had opened a piracy investigation against the detained activists.
The Charity Commission has endorsed the latest versions of two quality systems: Mind’s Quality Management and UK Community Foundations’ QA3. Aiming to increase governance standards and accountability, the regulator’s new Quality Assessment Endorsement Programme encourages umbrella bodies to develop a set of quality standards that their members commit to, which the Commission then endorses.
Global terror network al-Qaeda retains huge potential to attack Western targets, and has cemented an ideology whose influence will outlive current leaders despite the fragmentation of its core command, a new report by think-tank The Henry Jackson Society (HJS) has found. The timely new study, Al-Qaeda’s Global Footprint: An Assessment of al-Qaeda’s Strength Today, by HJS research fellow Robin Simcox, follows two previous studies on al-Qaeda, Al-Qaeda in the United States and The European Angle to the U.S Terror Threat.
A leading Yemeni human rights activist has been detained at Gatwick and questioned on his work and political views by UK officials under the Terrorism Act. Baraa Shiban, a member of Yemen’s National Dialogue – the body tasked with mapping out the country’s democratic future – had been invited to speak at a seminar at international think-tank Chatham House, also known as the Royal Institution of International Affairs.
The Charity Finance Group has released its 2012-13 annual report, showing a year of continued resilience and development, despite the tough economic climate. Although the number of charities in membership fell by 3%, individuals in membership grew by 23% to 2,237 – demonstrating the value that charities see in connecting more of their finance team to the support and services CFG offers, and securing a slight increase in income for the year.
Employers committed to encouraging their staff to donate to charity have an opportunity to showcase their achievements and share best practice with others as nominations open for this year’s National Payroll Giving Excellence Awards. Representatives from household names - that have in recent years included the Police Service of Northern Ireland, Network Rail and BT - will appear at the prestigious ceremony at the Treasury on December 3 2013, hosted by Nick Hurd MP, minister for Civil Society and Sajid Javid MP, economic secretary to the Treasury.
Business leaders in Bristol will today announce that Bristol has become the UK’s first social enterprise city alongside Plymouth, putting the South West at the forefront of the UK’s growing social enterprise movement. The unveiling is part of a Social Enterprise Places scheme being run by Social Enterprise UK. Towns, cities and zones across the UK are declaring themselves as social enterprise places with the backing of the campaigns and membership organisation. Two more places have launched their bids to achieve social enterprise town status and more are expected to do so later in the year.
The discretionary investment manager TAM Asset Management is launching a range of ethical portfolios which allows investors a unique opportunity to donate to their favoured charity from a portfolio of socially responsible investments. The You Give, We Give scheme forms part of the firm’s TAM Ethical product. Anyone investing in TAM Ethical can choose to give a percentage of any annual profit made by their individual portfolio to a charity. In an innovative move TAM will match the percentage given with the same percentage from its management fee.
Charities are being reminded that from October 1 they must make Gift Aid repayment claims using the Charities Online service. More than 33,492 charities have registered to claim Gift Aid online since the service was launched by HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) five months ago. Charities Online makes claiming Gift Aid repayments faster for charities and Community Amateur Sports Clubs (CASCs).
Today Compact Voice has published findings from its third annual survey of local Compacts: with the results revealing that despite reductions in resourcing, local support for the Compact is at its highest ever levels. 89% of respondents to the survey from both the voluntary and statutory sector agreed that the ‘Compact is important and effort needs to be made to implement it in full’, highlighting the vital role of partnership agreements in a changing local policy and commissioning landscape.
ACEVO and NCVO have expressed agreed enthusiasm about the Ministry of Justice announcement that the bidding competition for Transforming Rehabilitation programme is positive for the sector. NCVO CEO Sir Stuart Etherington, said the Government has taken on board lessons of the Work Programme. He said: “Specialist charities, many involving dedicated volunteers, can make all the difference to the lives of people leaving prison and help reduce reoffending.
A competition has been launched with more than 700 organisations from across the world looking to turn offenders’ lives around, as part of an annual £450 million package of rehabilitation contracts across England and Wales, said the Ministry of Justice. This includes hundreds of British organisations, employing many thousands of people, who are ready to get to work tackling the high reoffending rates, that see almost half of all offenders leaving prison going onto reoffend within a year.
Esmée Fairbairn Foundation has today announced the appointment of Caroline Mason as its new chief executive. Mason joins the Foundation from the position of chief operating officer at Big Society Capital. Mason has over eight years’ experience of working with organisations in the charitable sector. Prior to her role at Big Society Capital she held the position of chief operating officer at Charity Bank.
In a letter to Tom Brake MP, deputy leader of the Commons and a lead minister responsible for the Lobbying Bill, ACEVO chief executive Sir Stephen Bubb called for the coalition Government to halt the bill to allow for proper pre-legislative scrutiny. ACEVO has offered to work with the Government in rewriting the Bill - in partnership with other civil society organisations. Despite recent government attempts to placate charities, it warns that without proper pre-legislative scrutiny, the Bill still threatens the freedom of civil society and risks further damaging public trust in politics.
The NHS will struggle to meet its target of delivering £20 billion in productivity improvements by 2015 according to The King’s Fund’s latest Quarterly Monitoring Report. Only 1 in 10 (10 per cent) of NHS finance directors surveyed for the report rated the chances of meeting the target as better than 50/50. The majority (56 per cent) identified a high or very high risk that the target will not be met, while a third (34 per cent) rated the likelihood of success as 50/50. The survey - which this quarter includes finance leads from clinical commissioning groups (CCGs) as well as trust finance directors - highlights the growing pressures on NHS providers.
Business advisory firm Deloitte has today been recognised by Prime Minister David Cameron with a Big Society Award for their programme supporting 46 socially-focussed businesses. The Social Innovation Pioneers programme helps businesses set up to solve social problems become sustainable, scalable and investment-ready by using the skills and expertise of volunteer Deloitte employees. The programme was started last year with over 30 social businesses and one year on, a further 16 businesses have been selected.
Drinkaware is launching a review in support of the Government’s Alcohol Strategy to develop a coherent, well evidenced strategy as to the role Drinkaware could play in reducing the harm from public drunkenness and its negative consequences as part of its activities. The initiative seeks to develop new approaches to reduce binge drinking and the damage it inflicts on surrounding communities. The alcohol education charity is calling for evidence from all interested parties to inform Drinkaware’s approach.
The Queen’s Award for Voluntary Service, a unique UK national honour, was created over a decade ago by Her Majesty to mark the Golden Jubilee in 2002 to recognise the outstanding contributions made to local communities by groups of volunteers. It has an equivalent status for voluntary groups as the MBE has for individuals. To coincide with the 60th Anniversary of The Queen’s Coronation in June, 117 outstanding UK volunteering groups were honoured as recipients of The Queen’s Award for Voluntary Service 2013.
A new model that promises to provide simple finance for local charities and social enterprises was launched at a fringe event hosted by the Social Investment Forum at the Liberal Democrat party conference yesterday evening. The Local Impact Fund model is outlined in a prospectus published by the Social Investment Business Group called Growing a local social economy. The publication highlights the economic and employment benefits of supporting the local sector, in addition to the social impact.
Barclays has launched its new charity fund, a Tax Elected Fund designed for UK charities. The Fund will provide access to Barclays’ proprietary asset allocation and portfolio construction techniques, enabling charities to make use of nine asset classes to diversify risk and maximise returns.
Breast Cancer Care today reveals a new brand identity to reach the half a million UK women living with and after breast cancer. The charity’s new logo and visual identity have been created to help it stand out from the crowd, with a vivid orange palette taking centre stage, while the pink synonymous with the disease takes a supporting role. A specially developed unique headline font, named “Betty” after the charity’s founder, Betty Westgate, makes the new brand even more distinctive.
Amnesty International today announced the launch of the secretary general’s Global Council, a forum that will see leaders in the arts, business and philanthropy work together to further human rights. The Global Council members will contribute the expertise from their respective sectors to help raise support for Amnesty International and its human rights priorities.They have agreed to act as champions for the world’s first and largest human rights movement as it looks to grow in the Global South and East.
NAVCA has published the findings of their 2013 survey of chief officers, an annual survey carried out to determine the views of NAVCA members on current policy issues. Over a third of members completed the survey which shows that funding remains a major issue but NAVCA members are responding to the challenge. The survey findings were presented at NAVCA Annual chief officers’ conference (CORE), which is taking place in York today and tomorrow. The survey shows that funding remains the biggest issue.
The Charity Commission has today published its revised public benefit guidance for all charities. The guidance, which the Commission is required to produce under what is now the Charities Act 2011, is split into three short, high-level guides available both in online and offline formats. Trustees must have regard to this guidance when administering their charity.
New proposals to make it quicker for charities to collect donations and easier for employers to encourage charitable donations using Payroll Giving have been announced by the government, with the Institute of Fundraising responding positively to the moves. Following a consultation, the Government is to almost halve the processing time for donations from 60 to 35 days, allowing charities to access the money that has been donated more quickly.
In a report published today, seven leading charities, including WWF, RSPB, Greenpeace, the Wildlife Trusts and Friends of the Earth, assess the green performance of coalition ministers and Labour shadow ministers since the last general election. They reviewed the parties on four key areas: the economy, communities, nature and international leadership. The assessment has identified good performance by individual ministers and shadow ministers.
Action is needed to bridge the gulf in charitable giving in British society, according to a new report which shows that the majority of the time and money donated to good causes in Britain comes from just nine per cent of people, while nearly one in four give little or nothing. The new report by the Charities Aid Foundation, Britain’c Civic Core: Who are the people powering Britain’s charities?,which promotes charitable giving and provides financial services and social finance to not-for-profit organisations, shows that...
In a major and combative speech, William Shawcross, the chairman of the Charity Commission, yesterday told a charity audience that the regulator’s new board is “grasping the nettle” and improving the Commission’s performance to ensure the regulator promotes public trust and confidence in charities. Speaking at the Rathbones Charity Symposium in London, Shawcross acknowledged that the Commission, and charities, had come under fire in recent months and said in turn the Commission is now “concentrating on tackling the real problems that we and our friends and critics have identified”.
A UK-wide environment project and an initiative that will put together a practical body of evidence to help beat domestic violence are two projects receiving grants from the Big Lottery Fund today. Open Air Laboratories (OPAL), led by Imperial College London, is a partnership that has inspired communities to discover, enjoy and protect their local environment for over six years all over England.
Lord Michael Bichard is to chair a new initiative funded by Arts Council England, to raise awareness and understanding of commissioning opportunities amongst the arts and cultural sector. National Council for Voluntary Organisations (NCVO) will lead the Cultural Commissioning Programme, which will be delivered by a partnership including the think tank and consultancies NPC and nef, as well as the arts network Mission, Models, Money (MMM).
Part Two of the Transparency, Non-Party Campaigning and Trade Union Administration Bill known as the ‘Lobbying Bill’, could have devastating consequences for debate and democracy, Amnesty International warned today as MPs prepare to scrutinise the Bill.The Lobbying Bill has been criticised by a wide range of organisations that fear it could hinder their ability to campaign. From Monday 9 to Wednesday 11 September the Bill will be debated in a Committee of the whole House of Commons.
A new report by specialist insurance group Ecclesiastical, examining the size of the specialist broker market in the UK has indicated almost three quarters of brokers place business in specialist niches such as charity, heritage or education and that charity insurance is the biggest specialist area of business for brokers. The Ecclesiastical Specialist Broker Barometer, aimed at becoming an annual temperature check of the UK specialist broker market has indicated that 71% of brokers in the UK place business in specialist areas.
Measures to grow the global market for social investment have been announced at the first ever G8 conference on the subject. Britain alone has over 180,000 social enterprises, generating £55 billion for the economy. While many of these organisations have traditionally relied on grant funding, a growing number of investors are now providing them with affordable but repayable finance.
Moves by Russia and Syria to prevent military intervention from the US by handing over chemical weapons are to be welcomed and encouraged, but must not be allowed to become a ploy to distract the international community from responding decisively to the Assad regime, say a leading think-tank. The Henry Jackson Society, an international affairs think tank, has warned the Russian commitment to collect and hand over chemical weapons stockpiles will only be effective if they are supported by a Chapter VII UN Resolution outlining the proviso that this must happen immediately.
The latest publication from ResPublica reveals that community owned energy could grow to 89 times its current size if the right national and local policies are put in place. In Germany, community energy accounts for 46% of all energy produced from renewables. In the UK this figure stands at just 0.3%. The ResPublica report, The Community Renewables Economy: Starting up, scaling up and spinning out, argues that if community owned energy is to become more commonplace, councils must remove the significant barriers faced by communities during the planning process.
The relationship between affordable housing and philanthropy should be reignited, according to a new report published today by Peabody and the think tanks NPC and the Smith Institute. In the preface to Rebuilding the relationship between affordable housing and philanthropy - a collection of ten essays by a range of expert authors- the three organisations call for the affordable housing and philanthropy sectors to work more closely together and for a working group to be established to support the two sides coming together.
New research published today from researchers at Marie Curie Cancer Care, the University of Edinburgh and NHS Lothian, reveals that only 20% of non-cancer patients in Scotland are receiving palliative care before dying. The study, published in the European Journal of Palliative Care, is the first of its kind in the UK to examine the point at which patients are formally identified for palliative care.
Citizens Advice Scotland are backing a national campaign which has been launched today by Police Scotland. The ‘Beat Bogus Callers’ campaign will run for the next two weeks, and will use radio adverts, booklets and posters to advise people against opening their door to unexpected callers, and offering advice on what you should do if you become suspicious. Action Days will be held in communities across Scotland, with local CAB staff joining with police officers and other community groups to talk to people about the campaign.
New measures announced today by the Government will make it easier for people to set up a local (parish, neighbourhood, community or town) council – the most local form of government in England – and give power back to local people so they can take more decisions locally and have more of a say over how money is spent in their area.
A clarion call was made today to wage war against the grim politics of austerity by Unite, the country’s largest union. Unite executive director of policy Steve Turner told the TUC at Bournemouth that there needed to be a mass mobilisation, including peaceful civil disobedience, across the UK “to inspire a generation”. He was speaking to the Unite motion on anti-austerity campaigning which called for the reaffirmation that mass industrial action to oppose the cuts and the wrecking of the welfare state is a legitimate option, including a nationwide march against poverty in 2014.
The government will act on amendments to the Transparency Bill after a meeting with the National Council for Voluntary Organisations (NCVO). At the second reading, the Leader of the Commons said that the government would listen carefully to the concerns of both the charitable sector and Members of Parliament in respect of specific aspects of the Bill. The government said it has not been, and is not, its intention to change the substantive test of what is expenditure “for electoral purposes”, and accepted it has heard the concerns being raised.
New independent research by industry analyst, Redshift Research, on behalf of Bottomline Technologies has found that almost a quarter of UK individuals (23%) have experienced a problem setting up or amending a direct debit (DD) or direct credit (DC) in the last 12 months, with 14% of consumers cancelling a direct debit because the DD set-up process was too complicated. With almost six billion payments processed every year, and each failed transaction costing around £50, this represents a significant loss in revenues and supporters for UK charities.
Young people are few and far between on charity boards in England and Wales, with 18-24 year olds accounting for only 0.5% of trustees in 2010. Yet a recent survey undertaken on behalf of Young Charity Trustees (YCT) suggests that the vast majority of UK youth without board experience would consider trusteeship in future, while those young people who were or had been trustees overwhelmingly found the experience a positive one.
Following the publication of the Government’s response to the PASC report The Role of the Charity Commission and 'public benefit': Post legislative scrutiny of the Charities Act 2006’, and Lord Hodgson’s review Trusted and Independent: Giving charity back to charities, both have been welcomed by leading sector players. Caron Bradshaw, CEO of CFG, commented: “Now, more than ever, it is vital that trust in our sector is upheld, and effective regulation is central to this.
In its response to the consultation on a tax relief for social investment, supported by a letter to Chancellor George Osborne, CFG has highlighted concerns over several proposed characteristics of the relief which are likely to severely undermine its potential. CFG CEO Caron Bradshaw said: “Social investment offers a potentially valuable opportunity for some charities, particularly those looking to expand or innovate. However, as the proposals currently stand, we are of the view that uptake of this potentially valuable relief will be highly restricted, causing it to become a missed opportunity to bring new income into many charities.”
United Nations secretary-general Ban Ki-moon today released his report to the General Assembly on the work carried out by the United Nations over the past year, highlighting new priorities and challenges. In his annual report on the work of the Organization, Ban said that the UN is adapting to new realities, among them an unprecedented level of interconnectedness, as well as unemployment brought about by the global economic crisis, increasing inequality within and among States, and environmental degradation.
NAVCA has added its voice to the growing criticism of the Lobbying Bill being debated in Parliament yesterday. NAVCA has written to Graham Allen MP, chair of the Political and Constitutional Reform Committee expressing its concerns. In particular NAVCA is concerned that the bill will gag charities and will create confusion about what campaigning activity needs to be regulated.
YoungMinds, the UK’s leading children and young people’s mental health charity has launched their biggest online survey. Reaching out to young people across the country, the survey will reveal what concerns and worries most affect the lives of young people today. The consultation survey will help to shape the development of a new and exciting campaign generating a mass movement for change, and creating a better future for young people funded by the Big Lottery Fund and Comic Relief.
Short-termist investors who are negative on the bond market will miss great opportunities, according to Sturgeon Ventures, the regulatory incubator, which has launched a non-profit fixed income portfolio management service for charities that they believe are overlooked by large fund managers because they have less than £20m to invest.
The Board of Trustees of Marie Stopes International (MSI) has today announced the appointment of Simon RG Cooke as the chief executive officer of Marie Stopes International. He will begin on November 4 2013. Cooke is currently CEO of SuperMax, a personal care product marketing organisation based in the Middle East.
Despite a decline in corporate, trust and legacy income, individual donations and income from challenges and events have increased, leading to a small increase in total generated funds, according to the Epilepsy Society's latest accounts. Bridget Gardiner, director of fundraising and marketing explained: "In the last year we've seen a decline in corporate, trust and legacy income of £138,000. About a year ago, to pre-empt the shortfall, we took a strategic decision to look at new ways of generating income.
One hundred 17 and 18 year olds attended bespoke digital skills workshops at the O2 “Campus Party” today. They were joined by minister for Civil Society Nick Hurd, and Telefonica/O2 CEO Ronan Dunne. The event is a collaboration between government, business and non-profit organisations designed to ensure young people have the skills to make their own digital products and content and brings together three youth and community programmes.
The profits of more than £1 million a week by controversial payday lender Wonga was branded as ‘vulture capitalism’ by Unite, the country’s largest union, today.
The union is angry that much of the so-called economic recovery and boost in consumer spending is being fuelled by payday lenders that “prey on the financially vulnerable”. Unite general secretary Len McCluskey said: “The fact that Wonga’s profits rose to £62.5 million in 2012 urgently reinforces the need for legislation to curb payday lenders and also for a Treasury select committee probe into this industry.
National heart charity Heart Research UK is backing a major new Government campaign that aims to help families introduce healthy changes to their school-time routines.The Change4Life ‘Smart Restart’ campaign will encourage families to capitalise on the fresh start presented by the new school year as an opportunity to establish healthier habits – such as walking to school, incorporating short bursts of extra activity into the day, and making sure children eat a healthy lunch at school – in order to get parents and children moving more and eating more healthily.
The Big Lottery Fund has appointed Social Finance in partnership with the Local Government Association (LGA) to offer a support package for those developing Social Impact Bonds (SIBs) and other Payment by Results (PbR) based social investments as part of Commissioning Better Outcomes. Social Finance and LGA, who bring a wealth of experience to this area, will work to engage and encourage the development of SIB proposals that could then benefit from the £40million Big Lottery Fund’s Commissioning Better Outcomes fund or the Cabinet Office’s £20 million Social Outcomes Fund.
A new chief executive has joined Willow - the only UK charity supporting seriously ill 16 to 40 year olds by providing unique and positive special days. David White took over the role from September 2 , succeeding Jeff Kaye who has been in post since early 2012 and has strengthened and consolidated Willow’s operations. Kaye is leaving to pursue other interests in the voluntary sector.
Up to 180,000 people with dementia feel trapped in their own homes according to a major new report launched by Alzheimer’s Society today. Building dementia-friendly communities: A priority for everyone shows that one in three people (35 per cent) with dementia surveyed only leave their homes once a week and one in 10 get out just once a month.
Advice from a top election law QC has confirmed charities’ fears over proposals in the government’s lobbying bill, due to get its second reading in the Commons today. NCVO wrote to Cabinet Office minister, Chloë Smith, last month, backed by many household name charities, to express its concern about proposals in the bill on ‘non-party campaigning’.
NICVA is concerned that the UK Government is pushing through a Bill with undue haste, which if passed could curtail essential and longstanding freedoms. The Transparency of Lobbying, Non-Party Campaigning and Trade Union Administration Bill is due to have its second reading at Westminster today before moving straight to Committee Stage on September 9.
The United States’ vote on potential military action in Syria could have a disastrous effect on America’s standing in the Middle East if Congress fails to approve intervention, the Henry Jackson Society (HJS) think tank has warned.
With congressional approval being sought by President Obama, the US Administration must use the next week to persuade Congress that the use of force is the only way President Assad will be brought to the negotiating table to bring about peace and prevent further use of chemical weapons, sasy the think- tank.
As the Lobbying Bill is being debated in the Commons today, an ACEVO poll reveals the public have far lower trust in lobbyists, to influence Government for the benefit of society, than other sectors. Charities are the best-trusted sector. Sir Stephen Bubb, CEO of ACEVO, said, "The public trusts charities to do this – and they don’t trust lobbyists. So, it’s important that the Lobbying Bill takes the right steps to restore public faith in politics.
Charities, led by the National Council for Voluntary Organisations (NCVO), have written to Cabinet Office minister, Chloe Smith, to express serious concerns over proposals in the lobbying and transparency bill which would dramatically limit their ability to speak out on issues affecting the people and causes they support.
Government plans to outsource public service provision to independent employee-led mutuals should be subject to a ballot of employees and not be 'forced through' against their will, Co-operatives UK and the TUC warned today. The two umbrella groups - representing co-operatives and unions - say that ministers should not ignore the views of workers in their drive to mutualise services.
A new report from think-tank IPPR makes the case for an economy built on shared rewards and more democratic workplaces, rather than management prerogative, shareholder power and trickle-down economics. The report notes how the financial crash of 2008 brought the underlying weaknesses of British capitalism out into the light.
The British public should take the chance to thank the unsung heroes who risk their lives to deliver aid in warzones and natural disasters, International Development Secretary Justine Greening urged today. On World Humanitarian Day, today, she is calling on as many people as possible to get online and send a message of thanks to humanitarian aid workers, including the British men and women working in some of the most inhospitable places in the world to get help to those who need it most.
The Egyptian security forces must take urgent steps to avoid further bloodshed after a pro-Morsi sit-in was dispersed in Cairo today, Amnesty International said this afternoon. Amnesty is currently working on the ground to verify any abuses that have been carried out.
The partner of a Guardian journalist who was detained earleir today while in transit at a London airport was clearly the victim of unwarranted revenge tactics, targeted for no more than who his partner is, Amnesty International said this evening. David Michael Miranda - the partner of Glenn Greenwald, the Guardian journalist who analysed and published information on the documents concerning the USA’s unlawful surveillance programme released by Edward Snowden - was detained while in transit in Heathrow today.
Amnesty International is calling for the Egyptian authorities to take immediate steps to ensure the safety of Egypt’s Coptic Christians after an unprecedented rise in sectarian violence across the country. Coptic Christians have been targeted - seemingly in retaliation for their support of the ousting of Mohamed Morsi - since the violent dispersals of pro-Morsi sit-ins in Greater Cairo on 14 August.
Back to school is putting a tremendous strain on parents’ finances as 1 in 4 borrow to cover the cost of a new uniform, reveal new figures from Citizens Advice.
Almost two thirds of parents face costs of over £70 for a new school uniform for each child this term – and 19% will fork out more than £150 per uniform. The national charity also finds that only 11% expect to pay under £30 for a new school uniform.
New figures from Citizens Advice show a 78% rise in enquiries about foodbanks in the past six months. The figures show a rise in enquiries about foodbanks in Citizens Advice Bureaux in almost every region of the country. The national charity’s chief executive calls the spike in requests for information about emergency food supplies “alarming” and has warned that “a perfect storm of pressures” is increasing demand.
Measures introduced since the last General Election cut fraud and error against the public purse by £6.5 billion last year, ministers revealed today. Better fraud prevention and reducing errors in the tax and benefits systems, along with more fraudsters being prosecuted, saved nearly £400 for every working family in the country.
This could be the last 6 week summer holiday for schools across England as a result of Government plans to give schools the freedom to set school holiday dates and durations. However, new figures out today suggest this could be a real concern for parents as varied holidays will cause major childcare difficulties for families with children at different schools.
Today, the Big Lottery Fund is announcing £5 million in development funding to be shared by fifteen areas in England to build long term plans to support thousands of parents in giving their children the best start in life. The investment is from the Fund’s A Better Start initiative which aims to improve the life chances of over 10,000 children by investing £165 million for up to ten years.
The Ariane de Rothschild Fellowship 2013 will launch today, bringing together the brightest social entrepreneurs from across Europe and North America to develop a new model for conflict resolution by harnessing the power of social entrepreneurship. Firoz Ladak, executive director, Edmond de Rothschild Foundation, said: “We want to create a network of entrepreneurs who not only have the tools to develop successful businesses that deliver sustainable social impact, but are committed to improving relations between the Jewish and Muslim communities.
The UK is making the fight against dementia global by hosting the first G8 summit dedicated to seeking an ambitious level of international coordination and an effective response to tackling the condition. Prime Minister David Cameron and Health Secretary Jeremy Hunt will use the UK’s 2013 presidency of the G8 to lead coordinated global action against what is fast becoming one of the greatest pressures on families, carers and health systems around the world.
Impact investing, where a measurable social and/or environmental impact is generated alongside a financial return, is developing rapidly across the investment community and all economic sectors, with strong UK and EU policy support. This is among the key findings of the report The Future of Investment: Impact Investing, published today by the UK Sustainable Investment and Finance Association.
Spending cuts have devastated the Big Society and left local communities and voluntary sector organisations in turmoil across the country, says a leading think-tank. A ground-breaking two-year study, Surviving Austerity, published today by think-tank New Economics Foundation (NEF) paints a bleak portrait of the impact of spending cuts on communities in England.
On the anniversary of the Olympics closing ceremony, Debra Allcock Tyler, chief executive of the charity Directory of Social Change has released a video criticising the Government for ignoring the pleas of over 3,000 charities who have added their support to the Big Lottery Refund Campaign. The funds were diverted from charitable good causes in 2007 to support the building of Olympics infrastructure.
The Cabinet Office has announced that a scheme providing support for disabled adults and older people will receive over £140,000 to expand its services. ‘Shared Lives’ arrangements are a model of social care where adults that may be isolated or in vulnerable situations are placed with supportive families, rather than in residential homes or with visiting carers, giving those in need of support a greater degree of flexibility and independence.
New Prince's Trust research shows that struggling school leavers need more vocational support. Abandoned Ambitions, new research from The Prince's Trust, supported by HSBC, shows that one in six young people believes they will “end up on benefits”, and this increases to more than one in three among those leaving school with poor grades.
Today Compact Voice and the Office for Civil Society have announced a joint action plan, which sets out clear activities for both to strengthen use of the Compact across government departments. The National Audit Office’s report into government implementation of the Compact, published in 2012, included a number of recommendations that the joint action plan aims to address.
Players of charity lottery, People’s Postcode Lottery, have raised an £30.3 million for charities since its launch in 2008. The money has been awarded to small community associations as well as national charities. As well as reaching the £30.3 million milestone for charities and good causes, People’s Postcode Trust, the grant-giving trust funded by players, has awarded its 1000th grant.
After the recent spate of stories about charity pay, The NCVO and the Charity Commission are set to work together to produce guidance for charity trustees, on how to go about determining senior staff remuneration. The group will include chairs of trustees from a range of charities, including the broadcaster, Martyn Lewis, who has been chair of NCVO since 2010. It is expected to finalise guidance in spring.
People think charities spend more than double the acceptable level of their income on administration costs, new research suggests. The poll, published by research consultancy nfpSynergy, also reveals people want to see a big increase in the amount they think is being spent on a charity’s cause. The research, taken from a nationally representative survey of 1002 adults, shows that people think charities spend 36% of their income on admin costs, twice the 16% they feel would be acceptable.
The national director of The Leprosy Mission England and Wales, Peter Walker, has condemned the comments made by UKIP MEP Godfrey Bloom on international aid. Addressing a clutch of supporters in the West Midlands on Monday, Bloom was caught on camera talking about foreign aid. He said: “How we can possibly be giving a billion pounds a month, when we’re in this sort of debt, to bongo bongo land, is completely beyond me."
ACEVO chief Sir Stephen Bubb has slammed comments made by Charity Commission chairman William Shawcross on charity CEO pay. Shawcross said in an interveiew in today's The Daily Telegraph that large salaries paid to charity staff could "bring the charitable world into disrepute". Shawcross said organisations must ask if pay levels are "really appropriate".
Britain is spending almost £2billion a year on welfare payments to people of working age who live in once flourishing seaside towns, according to a new report by a think-tank warning that some resorts are suffering severe social breakdown. Of the 20 neighbourhoods (LSOAs) across the UK with the highest levels of working age people on out of work benefits, seven are in coastal towns that once attracted millions of holidaymakers.
Young people with high levels of cultural capital are more likely to volunteer, says new research from the Third Sector Research Centre. Going to the theatre, concerts, sports events, museums or art galleries had the greatest influence on youth volunteering, political and organisational involvement. The research is the first large-scale analysis of youth volunteering in the UK.
Three in four people think that London-based offices for charities are a waste of money, new research shows. The public also take a dim view of paying for rebranding, but more than half say they would feel confident that a charity spends donations well if they vetoed first class travel for staff. The poll of 1002 adults by research consultancy nfpSynergy, shows that 74% of people feel London-based offices for charities are ‘somewhat’ or ‘very’ wasteful, with just 4% saying they were even ‘fairly’ worthwhile.
The average online donation in the UK has risen by 21% since 2010, according to analysis of the last three years of online donations by the Institute of Fundraising and software firm Blackbaud. The data analysed thousands of its customers’ online fundraising pages between 2010 and 2012 and revealed that the average online gift in 2012 was £64.07, up 21 per cent from £52.87 in 2010 and from £55.61 in 2011.
StreetGames, a sports charity which brings sports to the doorsteps of young people living in disadvantaged communities across the UK, is the latest winner of a Big Society Award, Prime Minister David Cameron has announced. StreetGames was founded in 2007 and is a national partner of Sport England.
The Legal Education Foundation (LEF) has announced the appointment of Matthew Smerdon as the Foundation’s CEO. Smerdon was previously deputy director at the Baring Foundation where he was responsible for leading its Strengthening the Voluntary Sector grants programme. The LEF was established following the sale of the College of Law last year and officially launched on 10 July 2013 with the announcement of its first six grants.
The Charity Commission has opened a statutory inquiry into Africa Relief Trust. The charity was set-up to support the poor in Africa, particularly in Uganda. The Commission opened a regulatory compliance case into the charity in September 2011 after concerns were raised regarding its business rates relief arrangements. As the case progressed, the Commission’s concerns about the risks to the charity’s assets and about the trustees’ failure to provide full and complete information mounted.
The UK social investment market is being held back by a lack of investor readiness, the charity think tank NPC has warned. In Best to invest?, a new social investment guide for funders, NPC finds that the crucial ‘next wave’ of potential funders are being put off by the perceived complexity of social investment.
Oxfam is issuing an urgent call for public support of its Syria crisis appeal as the charity's 2012/13 Annual Report, released today, reveals a record year for its charitable spend. In the face of a challenging year, when overall income was down £17.6m (4.6%) on 2011/12 and demands on the charity's resources increased, Oxfam spent an extra £3.6m on responding to humanitarian emergencies and helping people living in poverty worldwide.
Two thirds of children are still inspired by Team GB’s performance at London 2012 last year with many believing that PE helps them to perform better at school, a new survey from the Youth Sport Trust has found. As the first anniversary of London 2012 approaches the Youth Sport Trust has questioned 1,000 11-18 year olds to get their views on Olympic and Paralympic legacy and attitudes toward PE and school sport.
A joint report from the Government and the Mayor of London released today presents the Spirit of 2012 Trust, an initiative of the Big Lottery Fund set up to receive some proceeds from the Athlete’s Village sale, as one of their ‘headline achievements’ on Olympic legacy. The trust, due to start funding projects in September with an allocation of existing Big Lottery Fund money, will support a range of causes including ‘maintaining the commitment and energy of London 2012 volunteers’ and ‘promoting greater understanding of the issues facing disabled people’.
NCVO has welcomed the Government’s supplementary guidance for Local Enterprise Partnerships, the 39 local bodies which will determine how key European funds are spent in England in the next European funding round, which runs from 2014-2020. The guidance sets out how LEPs should set priorities for their allocation of the EU Structural and Investment Funds, and reflects a number of calls from NCVO and its European Funding Network.
A report published by the House of Commons Public Administration Committee (PASC) has been commended by NAVCA, by echoing its concerns about commissioning by the public sector. The report is critical of government procurement processes, saying that despite Government steps to improve the efficiency and effectiveness of procurement, ‘the stream of procurement and contract management failures continues unabated’.
SportInspired, a social enterprise that uses the power of sport to help individuals and communities to enjoy happier, healthier lives has been recognised by Prime Minister David Cameron with a Big Society Award today. The enterprise was founded in Hackney in 2007 by Rich Raynes and Pete Thomond in recognition of a serious social need and is now a fully self-sustaining social enterprise, expanded from East London to cover England, Scotland and Wales.
The Charity Commission has today issued new guidance on decision making for charity trustees. The guidance, It’s Your Decision, explains the key principles of decision making that the courts and the Commission expect trustees to apply when they are making significant or strategic decisions about their charity.
Trust in charities has increased for the third successive year, new research has found. Two thirds of people trust them, making them the fourth most trusted institution in Britain behind the Armed Forces, Scouts and Guides and the NHS. The poll of 1000 people, carried out by research consultancy nfpSynergy, shows that 66% of people now trust charities ‘quite a lot’ or ‘a great deal, an increase of 2% on last year and the highest figure for the sector since 2010.
In a written statement to Parliament the Minister for Sport Hugh Robertson has revealed that the projected cost of the Olympic Games has fallen by £528 million. This marks a further increase on the £377 million underspend projected in October 2012. The announcement of the savings was not uncontroversial, however.
Around 6,000 young people will be mentored by Mosaic this year – a charity which has won a Big Society Award today from Prime Minister David Cameron for its achievements across five UK regions, bridging the gap between aspiration and achievement for young people.
The benefit cap starts being introduced across the country today. The cap will roll out from now to the end of September with the amount of benefits working-age households can claim limited to the average working wage – £500 a week. Work and Pensions Secretary Iain Duncan Smith said: "Returning fairness to the welfare state in this country is long overdue. We will always be there to support those who need help, but the days of blank cheque benefits are over and the benefit cap is a key part of this.
Measures in Scotland to tackle homelessness should be taken up by Westminster, says homelessness charity Crisis, as statistics released today reveal that for the first time everyone who has become homeless through no fault of their own has been offered help and accommodation.
A charity set up by football star Rio Ferdinand and an organisation which uses boxing and martial arts to steer young people away from gangs and crime have received more than £745,000 in total from the Big Lottery Fund. The money comes from the Fund’s Reaching Communities programme which helps those most in need and builds stronger communities.
The online giving website www.charitygiving.co.uk has been suspended. In order to protect funds the public has raised and prevent further charitable pledges being made via the website whilst the Charity Commission’s investigation continues the decision has been taken to suspend the CharityGiving online portal with immediate effect.
Carers are being hard hit by the Government ‘bedroom tax’ cuts to Housing Benefit - despite Ministers’ promises of support to protect carers and disabled people. New research by Carers UK, published 100 days after the introduction of the ‘bedroom tax’ lays bare the shocking impact of the policy on families caring for disabled loved ones. Carers UK interviewed 100 carers affected by the changes, and the findings include: Three quarters (75%) of carers having to pay the ‘bedroom tax’ are being forced to cut back on essential spending on food, electricity and heating...
Only one in three employees (33%) feel that their employer makes it easy for them to give time or money to a charity at work, according to research released by The Charities Aid Foundation (CAF). In a poll of employees, many are not given the opportunity to support charities, with less than one in three (29%) workers saying they had not given money to charity at work as they had not been asked, while 27% felt they didn’t have time at work to do voluntary work for charities.
The Legal Education Foundation (LEF) has officially launched today with the announcement of its first six grants. The Foundation is the charity established following the sale of The College of Law last year and has a capital endowment of approximately £200 million, making it one of the largest foundations in the sector. Its first six grants, amounting to around £550,000, have been given to...
The Big Lottery Fund today announced a new £40m fund to further develop the Social Impact Bond (SIB) market as another way of tackling deep-seated social issues in a challenging economic climate.Commissioning Better Outcomes is being launched alongside the second phase of the Cabinet Office’s ground breaking £20m Social Outcomes Fund to support the development of more innovative and flexible approaches that are designed to deal with complex and expensive social issues.
The Charity Commission today published its most recent Annual Report and Accounts, which reveal that it completed over 1,200 operational compliance cases in 2012-13. The Commission also closed 29 investigations, of which 5 were statutory inquiries, its most serious form of investigation into charities. The regulator says that operational compliance cases involve serious concerns about the management of charities and are similar to regulatory compliance investigations conducted under its previous structure.
Labour MP Chi Onwurah and shadow social enterprise minister has welcomed the State of Social Enterprise Survey 2013: The People’s Business . Onwurah said: “It is fantastic news that social enterprises are thriving. That is a testament to the hard work and commitment of social entrepreneurs and those who work in social enterprises...
New figures published today in The People’s Business report reveal a thriving social enterprise sector in the UK that is attracting a wave of entrepreneurs. UK-wide research carried out for The People’s Business shows that social enterprise has three-times the start-up rate of the mainstream SME sector. Close to a third of all social enterprises are three years old or younger.
Sexual and reproductive healthcare organisation, Marie Stopes International has released its annual Global Impact Report. Delivering services in over 40 countries around the world, 13.6 million people were using contraception provided by the organisation last year, which prevented 5.3 million unplanned pregnancies, 2.1 million unsafe abortions, and saved 11,300 women’s lives.
The Health Foundation has announced the appointment of Dr Jennifer Dixon as its new chief executive to succeed Stephen Thornton. Chair of Governors, Sir Alan Langlands said: "The Board is delighted to welcome Dr Jennifer Dixon to the Health Foundation as our next chief executive. Stephen Thornton has been inspirational and he and his team have done tremendous work to establish the Foundation as an authentic and respected voice on quality improvement, safety and person-centred care, and have supported many of the leading thinkers and practitioners in these areas through our fellowship schemes...
A group of volunteers in Loundsley Green who created a vibrant community from the rubble of a building due for demolition will today be recognised by Prime Minister David Cameron with a Big Society Award. The community centre now helps over 300 local people a week with skills ranging from business development to free basic IT classes for older people.
The government has outlined proposals for one of the biggest reforms of Gift Aid rules in recent years. These reforms aim to make it easier for charities to claim tax relief on donations made online or by text message, ensuring that more money goes to good causes. Gift Aid is one of the best-known tax reliefs available to charities, allowing them to reclaim tax on any donation paid by an eligible donor. Last year over £1 billion was paid to charities through Gift Aid.
A project to improve the lives of street children in Kenya has received £505,000 from the Big Lottery Fund. The grant to Railway Children is among six awarded from the Fund’s International Communities programme, which supports projects tackling the causes of poverty and deprivation and the impact they have on people’s lives.
Education charity Achievement for All 3As and I CAN, the children’s communication charity, have announced a new partnership to assist primary and secondary schools throughout England to improve their pupils’ communication skills.
Microfinance charity MicroLoan Foundation has been awarded a grant of £473,298 over three years from the Department for International Development’s (DFID) Global Poverty Action Fund. The grant will be used to fund the charity’s microfinance and business training programmes in the Southern Region of Malawi and will help 6,300 impoverished, rurally based women to develop sustainable livelihoods.
ACEVO has won a grant from the MoJ to deliver a series of workshops to steer and support third sector organisations throughout the ‘Transforming Rehabilitation’ programme. Having won the contract in partnership with Candour Collaborations and NCVO, all three organisations will be working throughout England and Wales to deliver tailored support, including...
As the UK economy takes tentative steps to recover, a new report has revealed community organisations are projected to be worth £27.5 billion to the UK in 2013. This is an increase of £1 billion from £26.5 billion in 2012. The Community Census Report, commissioned by charity and heritage insurer Ecclesiastical to examine the impact community organisations have in the UK, reveals that this increase by £1 billion to £27.5 billion in contribution to the economy is equivalent to 1.7% of total GDP.
Virgin Money Giving, the not-for-profit online donation service from Virgin Money, has announced its annual results for 2012 and confirmed that it passed the £200 million fundraising milestone at the end of May 2013. Donations to charities in 2012 through Virgin Money Giving totalled £72 million including Gift Aid, 25% higher than in 2011.
The Government is putting young people at the heart of policy-making by asking the Cabinet Office to lead the next phase of cross-government youth policy, it was announced today. The Government is keen to drive forward its ambitious youth agenda in which civil society, local and national government support young people to realise their potential and have the supportive relationships, skills and ambitions they need to succeed.
Mark Astarita, director of fundraising at the British Red Cross, will serve as chair of the Institute of Fundraising for another year. The extension of the role, which Astarita has already successfully undertaken for two years, was confirmed at the Institute’s AGM during National Convention in London. Stephen George, fundraising director at Maggie's, remains as vice chair and Helen Elliot, of auditors Sayer Vincent will take on her second term as treasurer.
The Charity Commission has welcomed the sentencing of Harris Polak, who admitted fraud by abuse of position by keeping money he had raised on behalf of charities for himself. Liverpool Crown Court today sentenced Polak to 45 months imprisonment. The prosecution said Harris Polak had raised hundreds of thousands of pounds, passing only limited amounts on to the charities involved. His victims included the charity Cancer Relief UK.
International children’s charity Hope and Homes for Children has received grants totalling £543,651 from the Department for International Development (DFID) and the Australian Agency for International Development (AusAID) to help establish family-based care services for abandoned children in Sudan. Working in partnership with the Sudanese Government, Hope and Homes for Children will help abandoned children under the age of three to grow up in family-based care rather than institutions.
The Disasters Emergency Committee begins marking 50 years of working together. A documentary about the organisation will be broadcast on ITV and leaders from the three main UK parties and the devolved nations have all pledged their continuing support. Current and historic supporters will gather tonight at BT Tower, where many historic appeals were launched, for a reception supported by strategic partner BT. The DEC was formed on 18 December 1963 to co-ordinate overseas aid and went on to launch its first appeal in response to the August 1966 earthquake in Varto, eastern Turkey.
A pioneering project which gives savers the chance to support the building of homes for homeless people is at the forefront of a new social investment strategy to address the shortage of specialist accommodation for homeless people in the East Midlands.
Charities stand to gain an extra £175million a year, if barriers to giving directly from people's pay packets were removed, according to new research. Overall, nearly one in three people (31%) say that they would be likely to give through their payroll if they were offered the chance, according to a survey commissioned by the Charities Aid Foundation (CAF) as part of an all-party Parliamentary inquiry into giving.
A new report published today by Good Values and the Institute of Fundraising predicts widespread optimism for an increase in income through Major Gift fundraising over the next two years. While major gift fundraising is a developing area for many, with most charities surveyed ‘just starting out’ (18%) or ‘building income’ (39%), almost a third of the organisations who responded and had a Major Gifts programme in place reported that they had delivered over £1m in Major Gift income in the last financial year and the average return on investment reported was 1:9.
New research reveals that despite the financial crisis, rate-rigging and tax-avoidance scandals the financial sector gives far more to charity than any other industry sector. Findings revealed in the first ever Company Giving Almanac, published this month by the charity Directory of Social Change, show the UK financial sector provides the lion’s share of money given by companies to UK charities and voluntary groups.
The Work Programme has been branded a ‘miserable failure’ by homelessness charity Crisis, as official statistics today reveal just 5% of the hardest to help people have been found work. Two years after the Work Programme’s inception, the figures show that Work Programme providers missed all of the minimum targets they were set. In particular just 5.3% of people claiming Employment and Support Allowance have been found sustained jobs – less than a third of the government’s target of 16.5%.
A new report from The Young Foundation, supported by the Private Equity Foundation and Big Society Capital, says the £2.5 billion a year pupil premium is not being used effectively to raise the educational performance of the UK’s poorest pupils – and calls for social investment to be used to develop and deliver programmes with greater impact. With £2.5bn funding available in 2014/2015, the pupil premium was created to directly tackle the education attainment gap; the 65% of pupils qualifying for free school meals who are leaving school without achieving of five A*-C grade GCSEs including English and maths.
The Government must act to review City regulations to counter widespread myths that are holding back the expansion of social investment, according to a new report by the Charities Aid Foundation (CAF) published today. Britain could become the world leader in social finance if the Government can allay the fear of regulation that risks strangling the social investment market, according to the report by CAF and Legal & General, a major provider of savings solutions and investments to its clients.
Fifty thousand volunteers generated millions of pounds of economic benefit to Britain during Sewa Day in 2012, the annual global initiative. Voluntary organisations, schools and companies including Lloyds Banking Group took part in over 200 projects helping their local area and adding real value to their community. According to the report, released today, by the Economic Policy Group (EPG), Sewa Day generated a Social Return of Investment (SROI) of £2.60 for every £1 invested into it, equating to up to £11.7m million of additional value for Britain in 2012.
The sector has responded negatively to much of the Chancellor’s spending review announced today, though there is an acceptance of some positives. ACEVO has warned of the continuing tough times for the sector, CFG warned of the "serious implications for those most vulnerable in society," NCVO noted that local government needed now to be sensitive to the sector, DSC said the cuts to the Commission make a mockery of Coalition social policy and the NPC said the cuts spell further problems for charities.
There will be no banking crisis in China, but a devaluation of the currency is probable, warned the financial historian Russell Napier at a lunch hosted by investment management firm Cerno Capital. Looking at the outlook for the global economy, Napier stated that Chinese banks do not function in the same way as banks in other countries, and are better thought of as arms of fiscal policy and, in this respect, it is hard to have a banking crisis if it is part of the government.
The Charity Commission has today opened an informal consultation on new draft guidance for trustees about how to manage conflicts of interest. There are no changes to the legal duties of trustees but the Commission is producing the new guidance to explain the principles and practical steps in a clearer way. Conflicts of interest arise in charities of all sizes and if they are not managed appropriately, can cause serious problems.
The majority of charities (58%) believe that the principles and practices of high street banks do not sit comfortably with the charitable sector according to research released by the Charities Aid Foundation (CAF). In a poll of charity senior managers and financial directors, 58% believe high street banks are not geared up to meet the needs of charities. As a result, over a quarter of those polled believe that the banking sector is currently holding back the work of charities.
The Social Investment Business (SIB) Group has announced a new focus on supporting public service mutual spin outs for the £10m Investment and Contract Readiness Fund that it manages on behalf of the Office for Civil Society. The money is available to help spin outs to scale up their operations and social impact and become more equipped to compete for new contracts.
At the House of Lords today Directory of Social Change chief executive Debra Allcock Tyler offered a passionate critique of the abject failure of the business community to take responsibility for vital social needs and causes.Allcock Tyler spoke at the launch of DSC’s first Company Giving Almanac, which analyses a sample of over 400 companies with community support and CSR programmes that benefit UK charitable causes.
The voluntary sector’s paid workforce grew by 6% over the calendar year 2011/12 according to the latest figures. The most recent analysis of the Labour Force Survey shows a total of 804,000 paid employees in the sector, the second highest total since records began. However, this increase occurred at a time when resource constraints and increased demand for services have put pressure on many organisations in the sector.
Yesterday saw the launch of the Small Charity Index, creating a stronger voice for charities by providing a monthly ‘pulse of the sector’ report. The Index publishes reports from a database of participating charities which are representative of the small charity sector as a whole by income, cause type, and geographical location. The survey is sent out via email and SMS for small charities to fill in digitally.
Judi Rhys has been appointed as CEO of Arthritis Care - the UK charity supporting people with all forms of arthritis. She will take up her post in mid-August 2013. Rhys is currently acting director of operations for the MS Society. Prior to that and following a career in the NHS and higher education, Rhys was Wales director for Diabetes UK, and then took up the same role at MS Society.
Three months since the launch of DEC Syria Crisis Appeal the UK public have donated a very generous £16m. By September this year DEC members plan to have reached hundreds of thousands of people with aid using DEC funds. Using funds from the DEC and other sources our member agencies are already stepping up their efforts in response to the escalating crisis; running aid convoys into besieged cities when there is a lull in the fighting, delivering medical supplies to make-shift field hospitals to treat the wounded, and providing food, clean water and basic household items to refugees fleeing Syria who arrive frightened and exhausted with nothing more than what they can carry.
Sector think-tank NPC has today called on the secretary of State for Justice Chris Grayling to ensure that his Ministry’s Transforming Rehabilitation plans for the reform of probation services are developed in a way which enables and encourages participation by effective third sector organisations. In a letter to the Minister the charity think tank has outlined three key concerns it has about the implementation of Transforming Rehabilitation plans...
The Minister for Civil Society, Nick Hurd, yesterday launched Generation Change, a new coalition of specialist youth social action organisations aiming to increase the quality, quantity and impact of social action in the UK today. Generation Change has been formed to champion the youth social action sector and drive up the number of young people actively involved in high quality social action, helping them to increase their skills and equipping them to take on social issues.
The Big Lottery Fund is to invest up to £8 million in funding for projects that will continue to inspire a generation and build on the legacy of the London 2012 Games for communities across the UK. The Fund, together with the Spirit of 2012 Trust, are inviting expressions of interest in projects that can deliver this through sport, culture and the arts, heritage, educational activities or combinations of these themes.
A scheme to mentor and rehabilitate prisoners sentenced to less than 12 months has reduced re-conviction rates, figures published today show. The pilot, being run at Peterborough prison by Social Finance with support from a number of voluntary organisations, has helped prisoners who would previously have had no support. It provides them with help as they prepare for release and then to access the services they need, including housing, employment, financial services and substance abuse services once they are out of prison.
Malcolm Hayday, founding chief executive of Charity Bank, has been awarded a CBE in the Queen’s Birthday Honours for “services to charities and Social Enterprise.” Hayday, who left the bank after 10 years in 2012, was one of the pioneers of social finance. He joined the Charities Aid Foundation (CAF) in 1993 to explore the possibility of loan finance as a new resource for the charity sector.
Confirmation that the Assad regime has been using chemical weapons against its own citizens must prompt Western intervention in Syria, analysts from think-tank Henry Jackson Society (HJS) have said. Tonight an internal memo from US and European officials has confirmed that ‘the intelligence community assesses that the Assad regime has used chemical weapons on a small scale against the opposition multiple times in the last year’.
The UK Sustainable Investment and Finance Association (UKSIF) has today welcomed the focus on the themes of “social impact investing” and “tax, trade and transparency” of this year’s G8 summit, and urged attendees to use the event to make progress in breaking down barriers to long-term responsible investment.
Cabinet Office Minister Francis Maude today has announced new commitments on open data that will give citizens detailed information on the operations of charities and companies. For the first time, information about how charities earn and spend their money will be available in an open data format. When turned into applications by technology developers, this will help citizens to make more informed decisions about the causes they consider supporting.
Social Enterprise UK has responded positively to the news that Chris White MP has been named Social Value Ambassador. Social Enterprise UK chief executive of Social Enterprise UK, Peter Holbrook, said: “This is a very welcome move. Chris has been an extraordinary champion for social value. He navigated the Public Services (Social Value) Act through parliament with commitment and a real desire to revolutionise public sector commissioning practices. The Act is already being embedded by public sector commissioners and councils in England and Wales who want to use their spending power to create lasting social change in villages, towns and cities.
The second annual Insight in Fundraising Awards took place last night in London. Charities and their data insight partners came together to celebrate excellence in insight driven fundraising, with RNIB, UNICEF UK, Comic Relief, Cancer Research UK, and RNLI amongst those winning awards for their work.
At the Social Value Conference yesterday, the Minister for Civil Society Nick Hurd announced the appointment of Chris White, MP for Warwick and Leamington, as the first official Social Value Ambassador. The conference, organised by Social Enterprise West Midlands in Birmingham, heard how Chris White will be working closely with Local Authorities and the voluntary sector to raise awareness of the Public Services (Social Value) Act, which came into force earlier this year and received cross-party support.
NAVCA chief Joe Irvin has today led a delegation of NAVCA members to give evidence to the Panel on the Independence of the Voluntary Sector. In his evidence Irvin cited gagging clauses in the work programme as one of the worst example of charities independence being wilfully attacked. The Panel is made up of senior charity experts and was established by the Baring Foundation because of continued concerns about charities’ independence.
The Charity Commission is calling on charities to take part in a new review project looking at strategy development and review in charities. The project, launched jointly by the Commission and the Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales (ICAEW), will involve 25 volunteer charities, each of which will receive a pro-bono strategy review from an ICAEW member. All charities registered with the Charity Commission and with incomes of less than £5m are eligible to take part.
The Charities Property Fund, managed by Cordea Savills, has acquired a portfolio of car showrooms for £17.4 million, let on long leases with annual fixed rental increases and options to extend for a further 20 years, meaning the Fund has now passed the £500 million milestone: with £510 million under management. The acquisition price reflects a 7.2% yield after the costs of acquisition. The Fund has also passed the £500 million milestone and is now fully invested with £510 million under management.
Nearly three quarters (72%) of voters do not want councillors to cut funding to charities by more than they cut other services, according to a survey released today. The survey, released by the Charities Aid Foundation (CAF) which promotes charitable giving and provides financial services and social finance to not-for-profit organisations, follows research which found that as many as half of all local councils have cut funding to charities by a greater proportion than the overall cuts to their budget.
Charity fundraising regulator, the Fundraising Standards Board (FRSB), has today published its annual complaints report, revealing a total 33,744 fundraising complaints reported to UK charities in 2012, and shows a 93% increase on doorstep fundraising complaints from 2011.The FRSB Complaints Report 2013 presents an overview of complaints received by 1,068 charities with fundraising programmes that deliver £4.16 billion in voluntary income annually.
The new legal structure of Charitable Incorporated Organisations (CIOs) has taken off in a big way and is set to become the leading structure for newly formed voluntary organisations with charitable aims – especially for smaller and medium sized charities, says the Directory of Social Change. CIOs became law in England and Wales in January 2013 under the Charities Act 2011, and since then the Charity Commission has registered more than 200 new charities as CIOs.
A new report by the Third Sector Research Centre provides a detailed overview of the environmental third sector in England. The research is the first attempt to provide a national listing of environmental charities, and gives information on the number of organisations, their income, sources of funding, functions and distribution. 1,800 charities have the environment as their primary focus in England and Wales, just over 1% of all charities on the Charity Commission Register.
At the world’s first G8 conference on social impact investing Prime Minister David Cameron yesterday reinforced the UK’s commitment and leadership in growing the global social investment market, which already creates jobs and growth in the economy and tackles entrenched social problems whilst saving money for the taxpayer. The PM noted that social impact investment strengthens society by providing finance to charities, social enterprises and community groups and enables them to expand their services and develop better solutions to entrenched social problems such as supporting troubled families, providing job and training opportunities for young people or simply enabling people to invest in community projects.
ACEVO chief Sir Stephen Bubb has criticised the Public Administration Select Committee report The Role of the Charity Commission and “public benefit”: Post legislative scrutiny of the Charities Act 2006 calling it "unhelpful, an unnecessary distraction", and calling instead for the Charity Commission to get its act together. Bubb said: "This is a bad report. It is an unhelpful and unnecessary distraction, at a time when charities need distraction like a hole in the head.
Most of the Sector has welcomed the Public Administration Select Committee's report The Role of the Charity Commission and “public benefit”: Post legislative scrutiny of the Charities Act 2006 with CFG, NCVO, the IoF, FRSB, PFRA all welcoming the report and the DSC noting it is "a considered report". In response to the publication of the PASC report, Caron Bradshaw, CEO, CFG, commented: “Ensuring that the sector is proportionately regulated is essential, both for preserving public trust and confidence and enabling innovation and growth.
The Charity Commission is being asked to do too much, with too little, says the Public Administration Select Committee (PASC) in its report on the implementation of the Charities Act 2006. The report, The role of the Charity Commission and "public benefit": Post-legislative scrutiny of the Charities Act 2006 observes that the charitable sector is at the heart of UK society, involving millions of people and £9.3 billion received in donations in 2011/2012 with around 25 new applications for charitable status are received by the Charity Commission every working day.
The chairman of the Charity Commission has responded positively to Public Administration Select Committee report The Role of the Charity Commission and “public benefit”: Post legislative scrutiny of the Charities Act 2006, calling it a "well informed and helpful report." William Shawcross, chairman of the Charity Commission, said: “We welcome the Public Administration Select Committee’s thoughtful and balanced report on their post-legislative scrutiny of the Charities Act 2006.
New research by the Institute of Development Studies (IDS) has ranked the UK as performing relatively better than most other developed nations over the past decade at meeting its overseas aid spending commitments on ending under nutrition. The Hunger and Nutrition Commitment Index (HANCI) has ranked the UK with the highest overall score out of 23 OECD members despite its overseas aid spending on nutrition programmes accounting for a lower proportion of its wealth than countries like Denmark and Canada.
The Public Accounts Committee has strongly criticised the Charity Commission's procedures for regulating charities in its examination of the Cup Trust scandal, with ACEVO CEO Sir Stephen Bubb warning the Committee's report is a wake-up call for the Commission. The Public Accounts Committee presented the most damning indictment of the work of the Charity Commission: noting the Cup Trust never met the legal criteria to qualify as a registered charity; the Commission’s approach to regulation and enforcement lacks rigour and evidence suggests that the Cup Trust case is just the tip of an iceberg, and with it possible worse scandal for the sector.
Today, the Heritage Lottery Fund has announced a further investment of £20m in 39 skills projects through its Skills for the Future Programme. This money will deliver 876 new placements, adding up to 918 years’ worth of paid training opportunities for people seeking a career in heritage. It will not only support traditional heritage skills, key to sustaining our rich cultural landscape, but also a wide variety of more contemporary ones, such as business planning and digital skills.
The Big Lottery Fund is today seeking a lead partner to manage and deliver a new £25 million UK-wide programme, Rethink Good Health, to tackle late onset of alcohol misuse amongst older people. It is estimated that over 1.4 million or over 14% of older men and women in the UK drink over safe limits. In England in 2012/13 there were more admissions to hospital of pensioners for alcohol-related injuries and illness than of 16 to 24 year olds.
The work of a network of churches, social enterprises and charities working together to help people most in need in their local communities, has been recognised by Prime Minister David Cameron with a Big Society Award. The Cinnamon Network provides small start-up grants of up to £2,000 to churches to fund social action projects including Street Pastors in Manchester, a befriending scheme for isolated older people in Wokingham and debt advice services in Bradford.
The Charity Commission has approved changes to the articles of Charity Bank to allow the bank to continue operating as a bank and secure its operation for charitable purposes. The requirements of the banking regulations mean that it is not possible for Charity Bank to continue both as a charity and as a bank, and has ceased to be a charity effective as of close of business on May 31 2013. Charity Bank is the only operational bank that has charity status. It was registered as a charity in 2002 and its income for the last financial year was £4.9million.
The Charity Commission has opened a statutory inquiry into The Public Safety Charitable Trust. The Commission opened an investigation into the charity in October 2011 after concerns were raised regarding business rates relief, and opened an inquiry on May 21 2013, following further concerns of risks to the charity’s assets as a result of a court judgement on May 14 2013. The Commission also issued alerts to charities on this subject on December 11 2011 and 20 May 2013 respectively.
The Charity Commission has today stated its policy and approach to the recovery of property which has been lost to charity through a serious breach of trust. This could be by trustees or others who, by their conduct, have been responsible for its loss. The Charity Commission clarified that trustees are volunteers, who give generously of their time and expertise for the benefit of their charities and the wider public good.
A report released today by Church Action on Poverty and Oxfam warns that more than half a million people in Britain have received aid from food banks in the past year. The two charities, with the backing of the Trussell Trust, are calling for an urgent Parliamentary Inquiry into the relationship between benefit delay, error or sanctions, welfare reform changes, and the growth of food poverty.
Despite a backdrop of sustained pressure on households' disposable income, research by Halifax reveals a determination by charity donors to safeguard the amount that they give to good causes.70% of people have given money to charity in the last year, with around half (52%) managing to maintain the amount that they donated over the previous 12 months and one in ten actually increasing the amount they give.
Tax evaders will have fewer places to hide their money after nine countries, including tax havens Singapore and Luxembourg, today signed a treaty agreeing to share information about financial account holders. Signatories to the Multilateral Convention on Mutual Administrative Assistance in Tax Matters agree to share information on request from other countries, with optional provisions for that to become automatic.
Charities will face increasing pressure to commercialise, delivering profit for corporate supporters as well as clearly measurable outcomes over the next decade, with some struggling to meet the challenge, according to a new futures report from Charities Trust. The report, which also sought the views of corporate opinion leaders, community practitioners and other experts, found that big business will play a much larger part in driving delivery from the charities it partners.
Think-tank the Adam Smith Institute has revealed that taxpayers have finally stopped paying the taxman and started to put their earnings in their own pockets. Tax Freedom Day—the day when the average Briton finishes their stint working for George Osborne and begins to work for themselves, falls today. For 150 days of the year, every penny the average person earns is sent to the Treasury, according to Adam Smith Institute calculations.
£40m of Lottery funding is to be invested in community health schemes across England as new research reveals that taking part in these projects can make you almost three times happier than if your income were to double. 14 organisations, including local health bodies and leading charities, will receive the funding from Big Lottery Fund to deliver the interventions to encourage healthier eating, increase physical activity and promote good mental health.
“Nudging” people to give could generate tens of millions of pounds extra for good causes, according to ground-breaking studies published today. Simply reminding people making out their Will that many others choose to leave a legacy to charity or including a photograph in an appeal can double or treble the numbers of people giving. The study was conducted by the Cabinet Office Behavioural Insights Team in partnership with the Charities Aid Foundation (CAF) and the University of Bristol’s Centre for Market and Public Organisation.
The MS Society is delighted to announce the appointment of Michelle Mitchell as its new chief executive from September. Mitchell is an experienced leader and is currently charity director general at Age UK. She has led high profile campaigns and driven policy change in a number of critical areas, including social care funding, which have resulted in fundamental improvements for those in later life.
Three times as many Britons would leave a gift to charities that they are passionate about in their will, if their solicitor reminded them to consider this opportunity, according to results of a trial spearheaded by Remember A Charity - the Institute of Fundraising’s long term campaign to increase legacy giving to charities. With gifts in wills currently bringing in £2 billion per year for UK charities, 13% of all charitable donations, a trebling in the number of people leaving a gift could have a significant financial impact for good causes.
Results of a survey about attitudes to social enterprise among UK charities were released today by Social Enterprise UK, and its findings are ‘overwhelmingly positive’, according to the national membership organisation. Currently 45% of registered charities identify themselves as social enterprises and more than half of the voluntary sector’s income is earned through trading (selling goods and services) and delivering government contracts, rather than donations or grants.
The deceased are rapidly becoming Britain’s most important fundraisers, as in memory giving nets record amounts for worthy causes. According to data from JustGiving more than £27 million was raised on the website last year – with donations also up 32 per cent so far this year. In fact, donating to a charitable cause is now the preferred mark of respect with two thirds of British adults (67%) choosing to make a donation to charity over flowers.
The 2012 Charity Times Awards Investment Manager of the Year Rathbone Investment Management, has followed this up by winning the Charity Investment Manager of the Year at the Citywealth Magic Circle Award Winners 2013. Each year the Citywealth Magic Circle Awards brings together a top level group of the elite of advisors and managers in the international wealth industry.
The late May Bank Holiday this weekend sees the start of a £10.5m campaign to bring people and communities together to sow, grow and support UK native wild flowers. Grow Wild – a new campaign funded by the Big Lottery Fund– aims to inspire people to get together to transform unloved urban sites, gardens and windowsills into wildlife-friendly wild flower patches.
The Charity Commission has today launched a consultation on proposals to introduce changes to the Annual Return and the content of the Register of Charities for 2014 onwards. All registered charities with an income of £10,000 and above are required to submit an Annual Return, which is used to strengthen the Commission’s regulatory work and keeps the charity’s record on the register up to date for the many members of the public and others who use it. Last summer the Commission consulted on the nature of information it should collect from charities to inform its wider information strategy.
The Charity Finance Group (CFG) and the Small Charities Coalition have launched a report into financial management in small charities. The two umbrella organisations are also seeking input on what they and others could do to improve standards of financial management in small charities. Making it count - a report into financial management in small charities for the first time takes a wide reaching look at financial management roles and practices in small charities, along with the challenges they face, and highlights key areas where additional support would be of most benefit.
Crisis has welcomed the report of the Work and Pensions Select Committee and its conclusion that the Work Programme is failing to move homeless people closer to work. The Work and Pensions Select Committee report, released today, states that the Work Programme is ‘not reaching the most disadvantaged’, singling out homeless people as one of the groups not receiving the help they need. Leslie Morphy, chief executive of Crisis, said: “The Work Programme has been a huge disappointment for too many homeless people. It has taken them no closer to what they really want: a better life through work.
A comprehensive package of measures to help the voluntary sector and mutuals compete for contracts to cut reoffending was announced today by the Cabinet Office and the Ministry of Justice. This follows proactive engagement with a range of organisations from the voluntary sector, social enterprises and entrepreneurial staff in Probation Trusts looking to form new mutuals. Many of these measures are being introduced in response to the recommendations set out in social enterprise organisation 3SC’s action plan.
Government contracts must enable social economy organisations to provide decent employment conditions, says a new research paper, based on an international report produced by the Third Sector Research Centre for the OECD. There has been much political interest in the role of the social economy, or third sector, in providing jobs and supporting vulnerable people into the workforce. But Governments must recognise the pivotal role that state contracts play in financing many of these organisations, and therefore affecting conditions and services.
Minister for Government Policy Oliver Letwin and Minister of State for Schools and the Cabinet Office David Laws are today publishing the second annual update on the government’s ambitious programme of public services reform. This includes the government’s response to David Boyle’s review into barriers to choice in public services, three further Choice Frameworks and a new Choice Charter. The Open Public Services Update 2013 sets out the significant achievements the government has made in modernising public services in education, health, neighbourhood services and many other areas.
Some British towns and cities contain welfare ghettos where more than half the working age residents depend on out-of-work benefits, according to a major new investigation into the anatomy of the welfare state. Parts of Denbighshire in Wales, Birmingham, Blackburn with Darwen, Wirral, Tendring and North East Lincolnshire are the worst affected, the report reveals. In Liverpool, there are nearly 70 neighbourhoods where the number of people claiming out-of-work benefits is 30 per cent or higher.
The Independent Commission for Aid Impact (ICAI) has today published two case study based reports on: DFID’s use of contractors to deliver aid programmes; and DFID’s Support for Civil Society Organisations through Programme Partnership Arrangements (PPAs). ICAI has given both programmes a rating of Green-Amber. Graham Ward, ICAI Chief Commissioner, said: “The case studies that we examined for both DFID’s use of contractors and programme partnership arrangements show promise for impact on intended beneficiaries. Civil society organisations and private sector contractors are valuable delivery mechanisms for aid and we have made a series of recommendations to increase the value that they deliver.”
Ten charities have won GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) IMPACT Awards for their outstanding contributions to improving the UK’s health and well-being, GSK and The King’s Fund announced last night at the awards ceremony held at the Science Museum. GSK’s accolade, run in partnership with The King’s Fund, awards at least £30,000 to each organisation, and provides them with training so they are able to take their organisations to the next level.
Nominations are being sought for Fellowships of the Institute of Fundraising (IoF) from fundraisers with a track record of commitment to the Institute and the fundraising profession. Fellows are recognised for their contribution to fundraising above and beyond their day job. In particular, fellowship acknowledges the commitment of those who give their time to the Institute in development of the profession of fundraising.
NPC has said that charities working with young people need to do more to measure the softer outcomes which impact upon youth employability. As part of the ongoing Inspiring Impact programme the charity think tank and consultancy has today launched The journey to employment, a new report which looks at the key factors which influence young people’s ability to get a job and how these can be effectively measured. New figures released yesterday show that for January to March 2013 there were 958,000 unemployed 16 to 24 year olds, representing an unemployment rate of 20.7%, down 0.1 percentage points from October to December 2012.
The review into skills and leaderships needs in the social sector has today published its response on a new blog site: www.leadingsocial.org.uk. The response follows a six month review at the invitation of Minister for Civil Society, Nick Hurd, led by Dame Mary Marsh and supported by a working group of representatives from across the social sector. The review has identified eight critical areas where there are skills and leadership needs, with recommendations on how the sector and the Government can respond. Connecting these areas, the review points to three key themes that sit at the heart of the challenge...
New research reveals that companies gave over £470 million in cash donations to charities and community groups, with total community contributions reaching almost £600 million. However, compared with previous research the total value of cash donations fell by 9%, with community contributions declining by 27%. The 9th edition of The Guide to UK Company Giving, published by the charity Directory of Social Change (DSC), examines the charitable giving and community support programmes of 550 companies, including many big household names such as Lloyds Banking Group (£43.8 million in cash donations); Tesco (£26.5 million); and Marks & Spencer (£9.1 million).
Social investor Nominet Trust today announced the approval of funding for eleven ambitious technology ventures that demonstrate the potential to achieve significant social change. The investment, which totals over £1million, is a testament of the Trust’s continued commitment to championing digital technology for social good. All of the projects which are to be awarded funding have a bold vision and a deep understanding of how technology can be used to address social challenges, such as youth unemployment or social care provision.
Vital frontline advice services across England will today be sharing in a multi-million pound support package as the Big Lottery Fund (BIG) announces 226 awards made under the Advice Services Transition Fund. The Cabinet Office is supporting BIG’s programme by contributing half of the funding. Today’s awards build on BIG’s role in funding the advice sector and comes as a direct and timely response to the challenging circumstances advice providers and those dependent on their services are facing.
A new report for the Joseph Rowntree Foundation (JRF) highlights an enduring link between public attitudes to poverty and the state of the economy, but shows how this link to welfare is weakening. The research - carried out by NatCen Social Research, explored public attitudes to poverty and welfare over the past three decades. It found that perceptions of and expectations for poverty levels became more pessimistic during the recessions of the 1990s and late 2000s, with a societal explanation for poverty gaining favour at the expense of an individual explanation.
Many of England’s volunteer centres faced a substantial hit to their income in the last financial year, new data from NCVO shows. The results of the 2011/12 Annual Return for Volunteer Centres, a survey of volunteer centres’ income and activities, show that 40% of volunteer centres for whom there is data for both years lost over a quarter of their income compared to the previous year. One in five (21%) had cuts of 50% or more of their income.
Helping thousands more new businesses get off the ground by expanding the Government’s Start-Up loan scheme and opening up further the £230 billion worth of public sector contracts to the smallest businesses will help boost growth and transform the economy according to the Prime Minister’s enterprise adviser, Lord Young. In his second report to the Prime Minister, Growing your Business: A report on Growing Micro Businesses, Lord Young highlights the increasing importance that micro businesses – those which have less than 10 employees – have on the success of the economy.
The National Association of Local Councils (NALC) has today welcomed the Government announcement on the Sustainable Communities Act, which means that local (parish and town) councils can drive a new “bottom-up” process that allow local people to drive central government action to help their local communities. The campaign for the Sustainable Communities Act arose out of the very concerning problem of community decline, which can be seen in the national decay of everything from small shops and Post Offices to green spaces and recreational facilities.
The Big Lottery Fund has announced today the appointment of Dawn Austwick as the organisation’s new chief executive. Austwick joins the Big Lottery Fund from the Esmée Fairbairn Foundation, an organisation she has successfully led as a chief executive since 2005. She will be taking over from Peter Wanless who stands down as chief executive at the end of May to become chief Executive of NSPCC.
Investec Wealth & Investment (IW&I) has increased its clients’ overall exposure to infrastructure funds by over £40m over the last 12 months and by £60m over two years. In the past nine months IW&I has invested in new share issues launched by four of the largest publicly quoted infrastructure funds: GCP Infrastructure, International Public Partnerships, John Laing Infrastructure and HICL infrastructure.
As we reach the third anniversary of David Cameron and Nick Clegg’s press conference in the Rose Garden promising to work together to prioritise ‘national interest’, national charity 4Children has written to the Chancellor urging him to meet families to hear first-hand how tough life is – and importantly how he can help. 4Children note how families with children throughout the UK face a third consecutive year of austerity measures, leaving many significantly worse off than they were three years ago.
The Big Lottery Fund (BIG), as part of its commitment to help charity Go ON UK eliminate the digital divide, is announcing an investment of up to £15 million to build the skills that people and organisations across the UK will need in order to take full advantage of support and services available online. There are 16 million people in the UK who currently lack the basic online skills to confidently make full use of digital tools available to them and 7.4 million people who have never been online.
Cabinet Office Minister Nick Hurd has endorsed a new report that shows how charitable foundations can deliver further social benefit by partnering with private money from banks and individuals. The report comes ahead of a G8 forum on social investment, held in June, which will form a key part of the UK’s G8 Presidency in 2013.
Minister for the Cabinet Office, Francis Maude, has today announced six new appointments to the Board of the Charity Commission for England and Wales. The new board members are: Peter Clarke; Claire Dove, Orlando Fraser, Tony Leifer...
At an event to launch Big Society Capital’s (BSC) first Annual Report last night, Nick O’Donohoe, CEO, outlined a number of proactive initiatives for 2013 to drive the development of the social investment market. He set out that the BSC is working with large grant makers and other social investors to create new forms of financing, available across the different development phases of community assets.
Save the Children and GlaxoSmithKline, one of the world’s leading healthcare companies, have launched an ambitious partnership which combines the expertise, resources and influence of both organisations. Together, the organisations will tackle some of the leading causes of childhood deaths by improving access to vaccines and medicines, healthcare workers and nutritious food.For the first time, Save the Children will be involved in helping GSK to research and develop life-saving new medicines designed especially for children in hard-to-reach communities.
Charity finance directors should embrace a culture of innovation to ensure third sector organisations thrive, the chief executive of the Royal Society for the Encouragement of the Arts (RSA) has said. In a deep and thought-provoking speech, Matthew Taylor spoke today at length about finance, leadership and change at the Charity Finance Group Annual Conference entitled Striving, surviving, thriving, where over 600 charity finance leaders were in attendance.
The Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF) has announced initial support worth £68m for six major projects in England, Scotland and Northern Ireland. The sites are: Silverstone, home of British motor racing in Northamptonshire; HMS Caroline, the last surviving warship of the First World War fleet, in Belfast’s Titanic Quarter; Redruth’s old Brewery transformed to celebrate Cornish heritage; London’s Alexandra Palace - ‘The People’s Palace’ - with over 140-years worth of history...
Skills - Third Sector kicks off a co-design process to create an innovative digital platform where charities and social enterprises can more easily find and compare training and other skills support. In a changing financial and technological environment, charities and social enterprises are under increasing pressure to grow and develop. As a result charities and social enterprises could miss key opportunities for further growth, and potentially risk withdrawal of funding and closure.
A £10 million charity bond that will fund permanent homes for people with a learning disability has proved so popular that it has been oversubscribed by people looking to invest in a bond that gives a social as well as financial return. Golden Lane Housing (GLH), the housing arm of Mencap, launched the bond in February with the support of Triodos Bank.
The UK has committed to help the new government of Somalia to tackle the threat of international terrorism, crime and piracy by helping it to manage its public finances, cope with future famines and create a more peaceful and secure future. The UK, alongside other donors, committed international support for Somalia’s new federal government at today’s Somalia conference.
Young Offenders’ Institutions (YOIs) in England are not providing the most basic education requirements, new data from the think-tank the Centre for Social Justice (CSJ) shows. It found that just one in nine state-run YOIs are delivering their minimum requirement of 15 hours of education to each teenager per week.
The United Nations human rights chief today welcomed the birth of a new mechanism which will empower individuals to seek out justice when their rights to food, adequate housing, education or health are violated. The new measure, which came into force on May 5, is known as the Optional Protocol to the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights.
In the first ever survey asking charities in Scotland what they think the potential impact of Scottish independence on fundraising in Scotland might be, respondents were far easier able to identify disadvantages (74%) than advantages (56%). Institute of Fundraising Scotland manager Gregor McNie said overall very few charities had discussed the possible impact of independence.
Analysis of the Census by the think-tank Demos reveals that almost half of ethnic minority residents in England and Wales now live in areas where white British people are in a minority. Figures from the 2011 Census show that 4.6 million minority Britons (45% of the minority population) were living in these areas, defined as those where less than half of the population are white British.
National financial advisory firm, Foster Denovo, is urging employers to plan around the key stages of auto-enrolment, and to prepare for their responsibilities early. At today's auto-enrolment workshop for the charity sector, Ian Bird, equity partner at Foster Denovo, will join forces with the Pensions Regulator, AEGON and the Department for Work and Pensions, to highlight the practical steps that organisations need to consider.
Charities, community groups and agencies from across Wales have gathered together to celebrate, share and learn from a ten year, £3.3 million grant programme, in Wales. The strategic grant making programme has been operating in five Welsh local authority areas: Blaenau Gwent, Caerphilly, Anglesey, Neath Port Talbot and Wrexham, for the past decade and involved local people determining where the £3.3million funding from the Fair Share Trust should be targeted in their area.
Neelam Makhijani, chief executive of the Resource Alliance, played a prominent role in the recent Development Cooperation Forum special policy dialogue, which took place at the United Nations last week. The panel discussion, entitled The role of philanthropic organisations and development partnerships in the post-2015 setting, was hosted by the UN Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC) and was chaired by The Economist’s US business editor and chief Matthew Bishop.
More than 20 charities and volunteers have been named in the shortlist for the 2013 Scottish Charity Awards. Organised by Scottish Council for Voluntary Organisations (SCVO), the Awards, which are free to enter, celebrate the vital work of charities, community groups and individuals dedicated to making Scotland a better place to live.
New research by the Scottish Council for Voluntary Organisations shows that the Scottish Government needs to invest more strategically in grassroots community organisations to stop people’s problems spiralling out of control and mitigate the chaos being created by the welfare cuts. John Downie, director of Public Affairs, SCVO said: “Community-based organisations are on the frontline helping people cope with the welfare cuts and have a vital part to play in helping the most vulnerable people in our communities before their problems become even more complex.
Big Lottery Fund is investing £5.3m in four UK-wide initiatives that will inspire and engage over two million people and ensure the 2012 spirit continues to thrive in communities through to 2014 and beyond. The funding is being released ahead of the Big Lottery Fund’s £40 million ‘Spirit of 2012’ Trust, set up late last year, being formally established.
The Institute of Fundraising’s Special Interest Group for Insight in Fundraising has announced the shortlist of finalists for the Insight in Fundraising Awards 2013, to be presented on June 11. The Insight in Fundraising Awards showcase best practice and innovation in harnessing data and insight to improve fundraising performance; and celebrate the successes and achievements of analysts, database marketers, researchers and online fundraisers in delivering value and opportunities for insight to make a difference in the charity sector.
Nominet, the not-for-profit organisation best known for running the .uk internet infrastructure, today announces the shortlist of entries for the Nominet Internet Awards 2013. From an all-time high number of entries, a shortlist of 29 organisations and initiatives has been selected. The public and businesses can show their support for the shortlisted projects and organisations on the website or by Tweeting the hashtag #nia2013 alongside the name of the project they hope to win in each category.
Barclays has strengthened its charities team with the appointment of David Budd as a new relationship director. Budd, who previously worked in the bank’s retail and business banking division, has spent the past year on secondment with Action for Kids, where he was the director of fundraising. Budd now joins Barclays’ charities team in the corporate banking division, and will have responsibility for a portfolio of charity clients including those focused on working with children and young adults.
A third of those caring full-time for older, disabled or seriously ill loved ones receive no practical support, new research from Carers UK reveals. The results of a survey of over 3,000 carers across the UK show that many are struggling alone without advice or support and are seeing caring taking a toll on their health, family finances and careers as a result. The research is being published on the eve of the charity’s landmark State of Caring 2013 Conference tomorrow.
New data released today shows the powerful effect that high inflation had on charity sector finances in recent years. The UK Civil Society Almanac 2013, published by NCVO, examines charities’ accounts for financial year 2010/11. In cash terms, the charity sector generated an extra £2bn in income in 2010/11 compared to the previous year, with a total income of £38.3bn. However, rising costs – inflation was at 5% – wiped out the effect of this increase and meant that the sector’s real-terms income was almost identical to its level in 2009/10.
The Brokerage Citylink, a charity working in partnership with employers, schools and volunteers to create a ‘Pathway’ into City of London employment, is calling on the new generation of young City workers to help bring more young people and employers together to create employment opportunities. The Brokerage, which works with 75 employers ranging from banks and insurance companies to accountancy firms and lawyers across the City and has already helped over 100 young people to find internships and permanent roles in the City, is launching the ‘Brokerage Alumni Network’.
Charity Finance Group today launched a good practice guide for charities on data protection. Protecting data, protecting people: A guide for charities takes account of variations in the way the sector operates and explains what data protection means in the charity context. The guide, available for charities to download from CFG’s website, was developed with support from a steering group of CFG members and the Information Commissioner’s Office.
Research released today into the skills gaps experienced by small charities indicates that they are struggling to deliver in key areas, including fundraising, impact reporting and long-term strategic planning, as a result of increased demand for services. The 2013 Small Charity Sector Skills Survey, published by the FSI and sponsored by the Institute of Fundraising and the Cabinet Office, features responses from 308 small charities.
A leading economist has warned that the current fiscal and monetary policies do not appear to be working in the Eurozone and UK but are having some impact in the United States. At a private lunch hosted by Cerno Capital Partners, George Magnus, former chief economist and now a senior independent economic advisor at UBS Investment Bank, and author of the books: The Age of Aging, and Uprising discussed the current and prospective economic conditions and policies in the US, Japan, the UK, Eurozone and China.
Applications to charitable trusts for financial support have risen, as the individuals applying to them struggle to cope with the costs of education and training. This has heightened the trusts’ social and financial concerns, particularly following a drop in their income as a result of the recession. Further and Higher education students and schoolchildren are particularly affected due to the escalating costs of higher education, the scrapping of Education Maintenance Allowance and the decline in statutory school uniform grants.
UK not-for-profits are facing a generation gap in fundraising, according to a new report launched today by software and services firm Blackbaud and consultancies Xtraordinary Fundraising and Stratcom. Not enough is being done to address a potential long term donation deficit, with Mature donors giving on average 27 per cent more each year than Generation X and 38 per cent more than Baby Boomers.
The Centre for Social Action Innovation Fund has opened for applications. The Innovation Fund is the first initiative from the Centre for Social Action, which has been established by the Cabinet Office to support programmes that encourage people to create positive change through social action.
The Charity Commission has today a consultation on draft regulations affecting permanently endowed trusts. New legislation means that trustees of permanently endowed trusts will be able to adopt a total return approach to investment without seeking prior permission from the Commission.
The results of CFG’s latest People and Pay Survey, released today, have shown that more than 8 in 10 charity finance professionals are regularly working more than their contracted hours, with 50% of finance directors working 20% more - the equivalent of one extra day each week. This comes as salaries have remained flat across most roles this year, and the estimated average value of across the board pay awards is 2%, down from 2.6% in 2011 and 2.3% in 2012.
Today, as the first comprehensive analysis of how the UK’s historic buildings are used by businesses is published, the Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF) has launched Heritage Enterprise, a pioneering new funding programme designed to stimulate local economic growth by unlocking the commercial potential of unused historic buildings and sites. With a commitment of at least £25million per annum over the next five years, HLF’s new scheme will empower not-for-profit organisations, such as community groups and social enterprises to work in partnership with the private sector to rescue and return neglected historic buildings to productive use.
A report published today by the Public Accounts Committee examined the staging of the London 2012 Games and plans for delivering the legacy. Margaret Hodge MP, chair of the Committee, today said: “Lottery good causes lost money during the period running up to the Games. They need to be assured that they will get some of this back from the financial returns secured from the development of the Olympic Park.
The Institute of Fundraising (IoF) says that long-term, transformational change and commitment to Payroll Giving reform is essential, and has called on the Government to look beyond the scope of the HM Treasury consultation. In its submission to the Government’s Payroll Giving consultation, supported by the Charity Finance Group (CFG), the IoF argues robustly that if the Government is serious about really increasing and growing donations through the work-based giving system then wider reform is vital.
Jupiter Asset Management has appointed Damian Cocking as head of Private Clients & Charities Business Development. The appointment comes four months after Andrew Clark joined Jupiter as head of private Clients & Charities and reaffirms the Company’s commitment to further grow its private client and charities business in the UK and internationally. Cocking joined Jupiter on 2nd April 2013 from Stenham Advisors, where he was head of Offshore Sales.
A complaint about Cancer Research UK’s response to questions about the costs of its face-to-face (F2F) fundraising campaign has not been upheld by the Fundraising Standards Board (FRSB) in its latest adjudication ruling. The complainant first approached the charity questioning the cost of its F2F fundraising in June 2011. Cancer Research UK (CRUK) responded setting out the cost and return on investment of the campaign in August 2011 and dialogue continued between the two parties until March 2012.
A new report examines charity commitment to raising resources through trade rather than donations and identifies best practices and key challenges for charities looking for new income-generating activities. The Social Investment Consultancy (TSIC) today released the firm’s latest research: Charities Unlocked: Realising the commercial and social value of charitable assets.
Local charities must get a say in setting the priorities for local European funding, NCVO chief executive Sir Stuart Etherington has said today, following the publication of government guidance that sets out how priorities for European funding will be set locally. Priorities for the funds in each area across England will be determined by its Local Enterprise Partnership (LEP).
The UK Sustainable Investment and Finance Association (UKSIF) has appointed Simon Howard, a former group chief investment officer with over twenty years of experience in investment management, as its new chief executive. He will take over on May 7 at the trade association for responsible investment and other financial services that advance sustainable development.
Claire Squires, the marathon runner who died running the race but raised nearly £1m in the process has been honoured with a national fundraising award. The family of Claire Squires collected the award on her behalf after she was named Most Popular Fundraiser at the JustGiving Awards – a title given to the person who receives the most individual donations to their JustGiving page in one year.
Leading medical travel insurance specialist Insurancewith.com has launched the ‘Who Cares Award’, with support from charity Genetic Alliance UK, to find the most extraordinary carer in the UK. The awards will be based on nominations from the public or through dedicated charities of those people who support others, dedicate their lives or put their lives on hold to care for others. Candidates can be young or old, a professional nurse or a relative.
The public remain firmly wedded to the fundamental principles underpinning the NHS but under certain circumstances could support the introduction of charges for some treatments and services, suggests a new report published today by The King's Fund and Ipsos MORI. The report is based on two day-long events with members of the public to explore their views about how to pay for health care in the future.
More than half the money so far given directly to the Disasters Emergency Committee by the public for the Syria Crisis Appeal has come via digital sources, the charity said today. This is the first DEC appeal to pass this milestone. The DEC also announced today that the Appeal total has now passed £10.3m.
Some of the UK’s leading fundraisers are a step closer to receiving the well-deserved plaudits of their peers with the announcement of the shortlist for the Institute of Fundraising’s (IoF) annual National Awards 2013. IoF head of training and events, Ruth Moore said: “This year we have created new award categories to showcase excellence, recognise achievement, and to celebrate fundraising successes over the past year – the National Awards have been running for 21 years and are the only awards created for fundraisers by fundraisers."
Money for good causes can be increased if stifling legislation and regulation are changed, say researchers nfpSynergy. Charities are missing out on vital funds because their lotteries are being stifled, a new report argues. A Chance to Give, published by research consultancy nfpSynergy, is calling for an overhaul of unnecessary legislation they say “has not kept up with the real world” and is hurting a vital fundraising tool.
A new Code of Practice published today by NCVO aims to improve the relationships between prime and subcontractors in public services. Developed jointly by NCVO and Serco, the Code of Practice is intended to help prime and subcontractors, whether in the private or voluntary sectors, work better together and minimise the problems encountered by some subcontractors.
A little-noticed announcement on public spending at last month’s Budget looks set to pit pensioners and working-age people against each other in the future over their share of the controversial welfare bill, new analysis from the Social Market Foundation reveals today. The SMF analysis examines the Chancellor’s intention to set a cap on a significant proportion of Annually Managed Expenditure (AME), the part of public spending that includes social security benefits and tax credits.
Today Credit Action releases its annual Tax and Benefits report, which highlights a 27 important tax and benefit changes happening this April. Of these, Credit Action has found that 18 (two thirds) of changes listed in the report have a detrimental effect on people, while only five are beneficial. The report profiles the 5 major structural reforms to the benefit system, such as the introduction of Universal Credit and the household benefit cap, in addition to another 22 changes beginning this month which include...
The Resource Alliance has welcomed the announcement of the new development bank for BRICS nations, and is calling for capacity building to be placed at the heart of its investment strategy. The BRICS bank was discussed at the recent summit of the leaders of Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa (BRICS). It will fund infrastructure and development projects throughout developing nations.
Britain’s ‘golden summer’ could have been a false dawn in terms of volunteering, new research shows. Despite a summer of Olympic glory and the praise heaped upon Games helpers, few people have been inspired to give their time to good causes and there has been no overall increase in volunteering.
The Spirit of Enniskillen Trust, a youth-led charity working across Northern Ireland, has entered administration because of increasing defined benefit (DB) pension liabilities. The charity, which was set up in the aftermath of the bombing of the centotaph in Enniskillen, Northern Ireland, has seen liabilities rise to £250,000 and has only £150,000 of assets in the form of its building.
The Charity Commission has opened an inquiry into Stanbridge Earls School Trust, in Hampshire relating to the management and administration of the charity following the Department for Education’s (DfE) rejection of the charity’s action plan to address failings identified during a recent Ofsted inspection.
The impact of EU data protection plans on direct mail fundraising would result in charities being able to raise less money for good causes. In a letter to EU Vice President and EU Digital Agenda Commissioner Neelie Kroes and UK MEPs the Institute of Fundraising (IoF) says the proposed Regulation on EU Data Protection Regulation could have a major detrimental impact on charities that use direct mail to fundraise unless the consent definition is changed.
The latest recipients of the Government’s £10 million Social Incubator Fund have been announced. ‘Hub Launchpad’ and ‘Social Incubator North’ will be the next projects to receive over a million pounds each in backing. The fund is designed to provide investment into ‘social incubators’; organisations that will offer a period of intensive support to social enterprise start-ups.
Action on Hearing Loss and Deafness Research UK confirmed today the two charities have merged. Both charities are known for their ground-breaking work in biomedical research, with Action on Hearing Loss currently funding UK and international work into treatments and cures for hearing loss and tinnitus, and Deafness Research UK focusing on UK research.
People are giving as much to charity overall in the midst of recession as they did during the boom years, with the poorest giving the highest proportion of their income, a new study shows. Professor Yaojun Li, of the Institute for Social Change, University of Manchester, analysed survey data on over 100,000 adults in England and Wales over the ten years to 2011.
More than two million poor families face significant increases in their council tax bills from next week, a report for the Joseph Rowntree Foundation (JRF) has found. The research shows 2.4 million low-income families will pay on average £138 more in council tax in the new financial year (2013/14). The findings from the New Policy Institute (NPI) are the first, full assessment of Council Tax Benefit (CTB) reform.
The National Union of Students (NUS) has announced that Ben Kernighan will join as the new chief executive. He will take up the position on July 8 2013. Kernighan joins NUS from the National Council for Voluntary Organisations (NCVO) where he currently is the deputy dhief executive. He will leave NCVO in June. Kernighan joins the NUS from a successful career in the voluntary sector having worked at the Terence Higgins Trust before moving to the NCVO in 1998.
The Charity Tax Group has today warmly welcomed the commitment by the Secretary of State for Health to look again at the case for extending VAT refunds to the non-business activity of charitable providers of NHS services, following the recommendation by Monitor, in the Fair Playing Field Review, that the Government should report on the case for extending VAT refunds to some charitable NHS-funded healthcare providers by Budget 2014.
Changes need to be made to the government’s flagship welfare policy in order to ensure less people in work are reliant on the state to top up their wages. At the moment there are 1.3 million workers who rely on benefits, in the form of Working Tax Credit, to top up their incomes. A new report from Policy Exchange shows that while people said they wanted to work more, they did not actually follow their words up with action.
An ACEVO taskforce headed by former Department of Health permanent secretary Sir Hugh Taylor will call for a “Prevention Revolution” in the NHS, with care shifted out of hospitals into the community through greater use of the charity sector, a new training and payment regime for doctors, social impact bonds, and an ‘NHS Investment Bank’. The report of the taskforce will warn that failure to embrace this agenda will lead to “the end of the NHS as we know it”, given flatlining budgets and rising demand for care from an ageing population.
New research published today by Centre for Cities calls on the Government to establish a national fund for urban development to drive forward major projects like city centre redevelopment, office buildings and houses. The research, Developing Interest, supported by the European Investment Bank, highlights that deficit reduction and a lack of appetite for private sector investment has left a major gap in funding needed to kick start development projects across the UK.
A new survey commissioned by the Mayor of London has revealed that the 2012 Games made over half of Londoners more aware of volunteering opportunities and encouraged 42 per cent of people to volunteer for the first time or more often. 68 per cent have been involved in some form of volunteering over the last 12 months.
Responding to the Work Programme Evaluation report published by the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP), Social Enterprise UK has said payment by results promises much, but in practice is failing those further from the labour market. The Report findings state that three-quarters (77%) of private and public sector organisations intend to remain involved in the Work Programme compared to 60% of voluntary and community sector organisations and social enterprises.
The Big Lottery Fund (BIG) is today announcing two new initiatives in England that will bring improvements to the lives of vulnerable older people by reducing isolation, helping to deal better with change, and building confidence for the future. The announcement is part of BIG’s older people investments which in total are pledging at least £160 million to support initiatives that respond to the needs of vulnerable older people in England and across the UK through to 2015.
Towergate, which has contributed nearly £7m towards its four main charity partners – Cancer Research UK, ChildLine, Great Ormond Street and Help the Hospices – since 2005, has announced its latest internal charity award winners.
Marking the 25th anniversary of Red Nose Day, this year’s Comic Relief – Funny for Money, raised a record breaking sum of money to help poor and vulnerable people in the UK and Africa. As the evening on the BBC drew to a close £75,107,851 has been raised – the highest total reached on the night in Red Nose Day’s 25 year history.
Official figures released by the Department for Communities and Local Government (DCLG) show that since 2011 there has been a ten per cent rise in households accepted as homeless and owed the main homelessness duty and over the last two years these numbers have risen by 26%. The national charity for single homeless people, Crisis, has long warned that the Government’s cuts to housing benefit will cause homelessness and these figures show that the cuts are now hitting home.
The Public Accounts Committee today published its 39th Report of this Session which, on evidence from the Department of Health, examined progress in making NHS efficiency savings, reporting it is achieving its financial savings target, but raising other concerns. The King’s Fund also warned the financial squeeze is beginning to have an impact on NHS quality and access to services in some parts of the country.
Triodos Bank has announced a major milestone, with its UK lending surpassing £500m for the first time. The news follows a 15% increase in the bank’s lending to sustainable enterprises during 2012. Triodos only lends to businesses and charities delivering social and environmental benefits, from renewable energy to community initiatives, so all the money deposited with the bank by its savers actively supports projects working towards a more sustainable society.
The United Nations refugee agency (UNHCR), one of the world’s leading humanitarian organisations, has launched a global search for fundraising, branding and communication agencies to join its new roster for international fundraising and communications. The chosen agencies will provide professional services that will play a key role in supporting UNHCR’s work to provide protection, shelter, safety and essential services to refugees and others uprooted by conflict and violence worldwide.
The Social Value Act should drive change in local communities by encouraging business to more closely consider the social impact of their procurement decisions, according to Deloitte, the business advisory firm. The Act, which requires public sector authorities to assess the social, economic and environmental impact of companies being awarded contracts, can make it easier for small businesses and charities to enter public sector supply chains.
National, independent health and social care charity, The Patients Association, has today revealed the findings of its new research into Primary Care Services. As many as three quarters of people (79%) wouldn’t feel safe relying on NHS out-of-hours services in a medical emergency according to study by The Patients Association.
A lack of focus on the role of local authorities in tackling climate change has been highlighted in a report published today by the Scottish Parliament’s Local Government and Regeneration Committee. The report, which examines the Scottish Government’s plans to tackle climate change in the coming years – known as the Draft Second Climate Change Report on Proposals and Policies (RPP2) – notes the part which local authorities play both as consumers and suppliers of services.
A new online recruitment portal – Charity Careers Scotland – has been launched in a bid to support and boost the Scottish voluntary sector and its employment market. The new service is created and managed by Bruce Tait Associates, Scotland’s foremost fundraising consultancy and voluntary sector recruitment specialist www.charitycareersscotland.co.uk is now live offering a revolutionary recruitment journey, and is populated with more than 5,000 potential candidates wanting to work for a charity.
Believe.in, a social fundraising platform that helps individuals to connect with charities and raise money for good causes, today announced its launch and commitment to change the way charity giving operates online. Believe.in said that unlike competitors who keep a percentage of donations as profit, Believe.in’s commitment is 100% of money raised through the platform, including any GiftAid reclaimed, goes direct to the intended causes.
The sector has responded relatively positively to the 2013 Budget. ACEVO, CFG, NCVO, CAF, the IoF and Social Investment Business all focus on positives in the Budget, but the Directory of Social Change stresses the failure of the Chancellor to pay back money borrowed from the sector to fund the London Olympic and Paralympic Games and UKSIF stated it was a missed opportunity.
The winners of the 2013 Laureus World Sports Awards have been unveiled at an Awards Ceremony in Rio de Janeiro. Among the highlights were a third Laureus Award for Jamaican sprint giant Usain Bolt, a triple success for British sport with honours for Jessica Ennis, Andy Murray and Sebastian Coe, and a special new Award for Michael Phelps, the most successful Olympian of all time.
New Heights Community Project in Kingstanding, Birmingham is the latest winner of Prime Minister David Cameron’s Big Society Award. The accolade recognises and celebrates individuals, groups or organisations doing exceptional work in their community and going above and beyond to make things better for others.
The Community Development Foundation (CDF) has today published six case studies of community projects tackling crime, ranging from rehabilitating re-offenders to preventing youth anti-social behaviour. The projects were part of CDF’s Community action against crime: Innovation fund.
Charity Finance Group has announces that the winner of the Adrian Randall Prize 2013 is Hilary Seaward. Applicants were invited to submit creative solutions to tackling problems and issues related to charity finance which have been neglected or are difficult to address, with the potential to win a £5000 prize to help develop their vision.
The Charity Commission has today published an independent research report into charities and social investment, alongside an analysis of the findings. The research was carried out by the Institute for Voluntary Action Research (IVAR) on behalf of the Commission, between July 2012 and March 2013.
Citizens Advice Scotland’s chief executive has written to the Chancellor, George Osborne, urging him to halt the welfare reforms that are hurting vulnerable people and damaging the Scottish economy. Margaret Lynch’s letter, sent in advance of the budget, cites independent economic evidence to say that the government’s welfare reforms are not only hurting poor and vulnerable people but are taking £2.7bn out of the Scottish economy.
Big Lottery Fund - the largest distributor of good cause funding from the National Lottery - has announced a £40m health injection for England. The new ‘Well-being’ funding will be channelled into initiatives that increase physical activity, improve eating habits and tackle mental health across the country, including targeting areas, groups and people experiencing the starkest health inequalities.
NAVCA is giving its support to the Ethical Care Charter drawn up by UNISON. The Charter establishes a minimum baseline for the safety, quality and dignity of homecare and local authorities are being invited to sign up to the Charter. NAVCA has a long record of encouraging intelligent commissioning and has been an outspoken promoter of issues such as grant funding and social value. Charities are important providers of care to support independent living.
New figures released today by PwC, Charity Finance Group and the Institute of Fundraising show that the economic conditions continue to prove challenging to charities. More than nine out of 10 charities (93%) have said that they were experiencing a squeeze on fundraising while more than two-thirds (67%) said that demand for their services had increased.
With the budget just a week away, NAVCA and Locality have called for the Chancellor George Osborne to create a fund to help micro social enterprise and local charities generate growth in the poorest areas. To tackle the stalling economic growth, they want a fund of £150 million to provide £3 million growth funding to the 50 most deprived areas in England.
Changes being made to the Immigration Rules today will provide additional flexibility for businesses, and enable top international students to pursue their careers in the UK, says the Home Office. The government is extending the offer already available for highly skilled migrants to encourage the brightest and best global talent to come to the UK to study, work, invest and set up business.
Under half (47%) of mainstream UK donors think people should give money to charity if they can afford to, a new report by the charity think tank NPC has found, and only 39% of people in the UK give over £50 a year. As the voluntary sector comes increasingly under pressure, with falling income and growing demand for services, NPC’s Money for Good UK report shines a light on who gives to charity and why.
A radical structural shift is needed in order to address the deep-seated deficit and underlying problems of British competitiveness, a new publication from the think tank ResPublica urges today. Making it Mutual: The ownership revolution that Britain needs calls for a new economic model that extends ownership to all. In the wake of the long-term squeeze on wages and income, a mutual business model is needed that delivers growth that benefits everyone.
The Big Lottery Fund (BIG) has launched a Kick-Starter fund to support organisations wishing to showcase the impact of their innovative projects to potential social investors. The news comes as David Cameron prepares to use the UK’s presidency of the G8 Summit in June to put social investment on the global political agenda. As of May 2013, England-based social businesses and those behind social investment products such as charitable bonds will be able to apply to BIG’s £299,975 Kick-Starter fund to pay for the development of a social impact report.
Junior school children give nearly £20 million a year to charity, according to new research which charts the extent of young people’s generosity in the run up to Red Nose Day on Friday. Children aged between 9 and 11 give an average of £1.99 a month to charity - representing donations of £19.64 million a year, according to a survey released as the Charities Aid Foundation (CAF) launches a major new inquiry into giving, chaired by former Cabinet Minister David Blunkett.
People who make healthier life choices should be prioritised for non-emergency hospital appointments, according to a think-tank. The idea is one of several ‘nudge-plus’ proposals discussed in a new Demos report, Control Shift, supported by insurer Zurich. It aims to encourage responsible behaviour and address the shift towards greater reliance on the state, instead promoting a public services culture of ‘getting back what you put in’.
4Children's chief executive has warned policies put forward by Conservative MP Dr Liam Fox would have a devastating impact on Britain's low income families. The former Conservative defence secretary has called for greater spending cuts and tax cuts, including the temporary abolition of capital gains tax.
An expert in charity law is alerting good causes to a new business structure introduced by the Charity Commission that can bring many benefits. Applications are now being accepted for Charitable Incorporated Organisations (CIO) – an alternative over the way charities traditionally operate as trusts or companies limited by guarantee.
Ten years after the US-led invasion that toppled the brutal regime of Saddam Hussein, Iraq remains enmeshed in a grim cycle of human rights abuses, including attacks on civilians, torture of detainees and unfair trials, said Amnesty International in a new report out today.
Efforts to tackle modern slavery in the UK are in a state of crisis, according to a new report.
More than 1,000 trafficking victims were found last year, including a significant number of British children – yet these figures, shocking as they are, represent only the tip of the iceberg due to a shambolic identification system. The Centre for Social Justice (CSJ) report condemns the "inadequate" response of the Government, and calls for a radical overhaul of measures to combat 21st Century slavery.
The Charity Staff & Volunteers Awards 2013 have been announced. The awards, presented by the Charity Staff Foundation, celebrate the outstanding dedication and achievements made by charity staff and volunteers across the UK. In December and January, charity staff and volunteers from across the UK nominated their charity heroes.
ACEVO chief Sir Stephen Bubb has written to the Chancellor George Osborne ahead of the Budget next week asking for four sector commitments. Sir Stephen stresses that the most vulnerable in society should be protected from the impact of any further cuts; that further cuts to public services are accompanied by a renewed focus on reform; for the Chancellor to support the voluntary sector’s efforts to diversify income streams and access financial investment; and any measures aimed at encouraging economic growth should recognise the economic contribution made by the sector.
A new report published by The King's Fund has found that, unless a more strategic approach is taken, financial pressures risk undermining the use of volunteers in health and social care. An estimated 3 million people in England volunteer in the NHS, health charities and social care organisations, adding significant value to the work of paid staff.
NAVCA has today published a report analysing the work that the 74 areas receiving Transforming Local Infrastructure (TLI) investment set out to do, much of which is well underway as the project enters its final phase. The report pulls together common themes or similar areas of work based on the original funding bids.
Minister for Civil Society, Nick Hurd, today said the Social Value Act is about encouraging everyone involved with public sector commissioning to think about how they maximise the value to communities. Speaking at the Social Value Conference today in Liverpool, Nick Hurd, said: “As taxpayers, we should all want those buying services on our behalf to get the best possible value.
The not-for-profit sector comes out top in several aspects of travel policy management and duty of care, according to new figures released today by leading travel management company and charity specialists, Key Travel, from its annual customer survey.
SmarterPensions, The Pensions Trust’s defined contribution (DC) multi-employer offering for the voluntary sector, goes live today. The new DC concept from The Pensions Trust provides the platform for its ‘qualifying workplace pension schemes’ offering members exceptional value, with the Annual Management Charge (AMC) across the majority of the fund range set at 0.45% - one of the best value options on the market.
A poll for Bethnal Green Ventures – which supports ‘tech for good’ startups – has found that over a quarter (27%) of people would most like to run or work for an organisation which aims to make a positive social impact. Over a quarter (28%) of those polled also said they think startups will create the most jobs in the UK in the next three years.
Disabled children in Ethiopia and adults in Tanzania will benefit from grants totalling more than £720,000 from the Big Lottery Fund (BIG). The projects are among six receiving funding from BIG’s International Communities programme, which supports projects tackling the causes of poverty and deprivation and the impact they have on people’s lives.
Loughborough Students’ Action Group, which helps to inspire and harness the volunteering power of students from across Loughborough, is the latest winner of the Prime Minister’s Big Society Award. Last year they helped over 2,000 students to give something back to the local community around where they study.
Penny Shepherd, the chief executive of the UK Sustainable Investment and Finance Association (UKSIF), will give evidence to the Business, Innovation and Skills Select Committee as part of its inquiry into The Kay Review of UK Equity Markets and Long-Term Decision Making, this morning. Shepherd’s evidence will build on UKSIF’s written submission to the Inquiry, which focused on: the role of asset owners and companies in boosting long-term investment; the need to integrate environmental and social (as well as governance) factors into decision-making; the role of the Government in ensuring stable policy frameworks; and the importance of the Stewardship Code.
Having investigated all options, NAVCA and Community Matters have announced that the proposed merger between the two organisations will not proceed. They will both now plan their futures as separate organisations. Both bodies have rising pension debt on withdrawal with the Pensions Trust and after a detailed appraisal of the situation, both felt unable to pursue a merger for fear that a merged organisation would be hindered by pension deficits with the potential to escalate.
Charities across Yorkshire and Humber are reporting that deprived communities are already feeling the effect of welfare reforms, even though the biggest changes are a month away. An Involve Yorkshire and Humber report published today shows that voluntary and community organisations are already seeing changes that they attribute to recent and imminent changes to benefits such as housing benefit, council tax benefit and the benefits cap.
A radical new approach to welfare reform is needed in order to address the needs of the poorest communities, a new report from the think tank ResPublica urges today. Responsible Recovery: A social contract for local growth calls for a more joined-up approach to government policy on welfare, poverty and employment.
Millions of Britons are using consumer power to boycott companies seen to be avoiding their fair share of UK tax, new research reveals. A survey about public perceptions around tax avoidance, commissioned by Christian Aid, found a third (34 per cent) of Britons say that they are currently boycotting the products or services of a company because it does not pay its fair share of tax in the UK.
A European equivalent of the UK’s Compact agreement between government and the voluntary sector is within sight of becoming a reality, European charity leaders heard yesterday. Speaking at the UK launch of the European Year of Citizens, Oliver Henman, head of European and International Affairs at NCVO, said: "We first proposed a European Compact alongside partners in France in 2009 and I believe we are now within grasping distance of seeing it become a reality.
Employers say extra-curricular activities are as important as exam results when assessing school leavers’ CVs according to findings released today by youth programme, National Citizen Service (NCS). Seventy-six per cent of employers say that taking part in extra-curricular activities outside of school will boost young people's chances of getting a job, compared with 75% for qualifications and exam results.
New research by Marie Curie Cancer Care into public perceptions towards end of life care reveals a nation of Scots who are reluctant to talk about death, divided over the NHS’s ability to deliver good quality end of life care and confused about the services available to someone with a terminal illness. The poll, conducted by ComRes, has been released to mark the launch of charity’s annual fundraising campaign the Great Daffodil Appeal.
Wealthy donors reveal that evidence about the difference a charity makes and a personal connection to a cause are the biggest influences when it comes to giving to charity. A survey by the charity Pilotlight found that while over 70% of philanthropists and city executives said a personal link to a charity was behind their decision to donate, nearly 60% said information on the impact of the charity’s work was a key factor.
A new survey of charities by the Scottish Council for Voluntary Organisations (SCVO) has found that loss of benefits, and the associated stress and fear, are key concerns for people using their services. The research also found that ignorance among the general public about welfare changes is the top barrier to charities addressing devastating impact of the cuts.
The Charity Commission has issued advice to charities and the general public to minimise the risk posed by bogus fundraising collectors. The safer giving alert follows recent high profile cases involving terrorism which showed how criminals used the name of a well-known registered charity to fundraise for illegal purposes.
Andrew Holt searches through the maze that is the Big Society for meaning