Sunday, August 26, 2007

Community Foundation Network Conference 2007

Find out about the Community Foundation Network around the UK at CFN Conference 2007 in Liverpool 18th - 20th September 2007.

What is the Community Foundation Network?

Community Foundation Network represents the community foundation movement in the UK. Their aim is to help clients create lasting value from local giving through the network of community foundations.

Community foundations are charities located across the UK dedicated to strengthening local communities, creating opportunities and tackling issues of disadvantage and exclusion. Community foundations target grants that make a genuine difference to the lives of local people. They manage funds donated by individuals and organisations, building endowment and acting as the vital link between donors and local needs, connecting people with causes, and enabling clients to achieve far more than they could ever by themselves.

The network has grown rapidly over recent years. 94% of the population live in the area of benefit of a community foundation. It is one of the largest funders of community organisations in the UK (making grants of over £70 million a year).

Tuesday, May 22, 2007

2007 European Year of Equal Opportunities for All

Prejudice and discrimination have no place in a fair, free and just Britain. Inequality still scars our society and holds back too many individuals from realising their full potential.

2007 has been designated 'European Year of Equal Opportunities for All'.

The aim of the Year is to launch a major debate on the benefits of diversity for European societies. It will also seek to make people in the European Union more aware of their rights to enjoy equal treatment and a life free of discrimination.

Click here for more details

Wednesday, May 02, 2007

Women still face gender pay gap in third sector jobs

More women work in the third sector than men, but they are failing to reach the top posts and earn the top salaries, according to the new campaign group Third Sector Women.

Launching this month (May), the group aims to achieve equality between men and women working in the third sector to reach the top jobs. Currently most charity chief executives are men, and at senior level earn 20% more than their female colleagues.

Third Sector Women will work with female leaders, policy makers and membership bodies to achieve equality in pay and career opportunities, and to make work-life balance a reality in the sector.

Founder Rachel Whale said: “Many senior women do not earn the same as their male counterparts. We want to create a glorious escalator that will support women on their chosen direction of travel [in their] careers. Support will include role models, coaching and mentoring.”

Charity Times News Alert April 2007

Thursday, April 05, 2007

Charities Act 2006 – Regional events

The Office of the Third Sector and the Charity Commission are jointly running a series of free regional events to raise awareness of the Charities Act 2006 and its implementation. The aim is to provide charities, and others that will be affected by the Act, with the relevant information to help them prepare for the changes it will make.

The events are scheduled for the following dates and locations:

16 May – London
23 May – Leeds
24 May – Newcastle
05 June – Manchester
06 June – Birmingham
13 June – Southampton
14 June – Cambridge
19 June – Bristol
20 June – Cardiff

What the events will cover

· The implications and opportunities of the Charities Act 2006.
· The timeline for key implementation activities and explain how the sector can get involved in the implementation process.
· Where to go for further information and advice.

Who should attend?

These events are primarily for professional advisors such as lawyers, accountants, umbrella bodies and large charities’ legal and finance advisers, so that they can provide informed advice to charities and their trustees.

For more information and to register to attend an event, visit

If you have any queries please email or telephone 020 7261 8400.

Please note that places are limited and will be allocated as names are received.

Sunday, March 25, 2007

Small charities no longer forced to register with Charity Commission

Up to 38,000 small charities are now able to opt out of producing annual registration reports to the Charity Commission, potentially saving the sector £1.3 million in staff costs.

The latest element of the Charities Act, which comes into force on 23 March, means charities with an annual income below £5,000 are no longer compelled to register themselves with the regulator. The previous threshold was just £1,000. Small charities which hold an endowment or own land will also not be forced to register.

According to the Cabinet Office, an estimated 20 hours of trustee time will be saved for each of the 1,500 small charities that register for the first time each year following the change in registration rules.

Any registered charities that fall below the new £5,000 income thresholds will now be able to choose whether to de-register. All charities will, however, remain under the regulatory jurisdiction of the Charity Commission.

Source: Charity Times News Alert 21st March 2007

Olympics Lottery cash diversion won’t affect sector, says government

The Department for Culture, Media and Sport has claimed that despite the diversion of £675 million in lottery money to fund the 2012 Olympics, there will be no impact on lottery cash earmarked for the voluntary and community sector.Speaking before the Commons, culture secretary Tessa Jowell reported an increase of the Olympic budget from £2.4bn to £9.3bn, with £2.2bn to be taken from the National Lottery. She confirmed that Lottery good causes with the most impact on people’s lives – through the voluntary sector – would be protected and that it was the government’s intention that existing projects need not be endangered.

Commenting on Jowell’s speech, minister for the third sector Ed Miliband said: “After today’s announcement, the voluntary sector will get the same level of resources from the Big Lottery Fund that they would otherwise have received. Instead, the Olympic transfer will come from that portion which was expected to go to statutory agencies. I hope this is seen as a fair and equitable outcome by the voluntary sector and will be welcomed.”

Acevo’s chair John Low confirmed that the decision would indeed be welcomed, saying: “Our members will be very pleased with today’s announcement, which will preserve the sector’s level of funding from the Big Lottery Fund. I would like to pay tribute to all of them for their work on this campaign.”However, chair of the Big Lottery Fund Sir Clive Booth’s reaction was not so cheery: “I very much regret that it has been necessary to divert a further £425m of the Big Lottery Fund’s good cause resources to support the 2012 Olympics infrastructure,” he said, “but I am pleased that we will be able to protect existing programmes and the money earmarked for the Third Sector.“I recognise that the government’s decision will be a cause of concern for the many organisations across the UK who have been campaigning against any further diversion. We have, however, fought hard to minimise the level of diversion and to secure the best deal we possibly could,” he added.

The NCVO has said it will remain vigilant to ensure that the government’s commitment is actually honoured. Chief executive Stuart Etherington said: “We welcome the culture secretary’s pledge that the voluntary and community sector will not be adversely affected and now need firm details outlining how the government will ensure that charities and community groups do not suffer.”

Source: Charity Times News Alert 21st March 2007

Councils holding back third sector, LGA warns

The third sector is being held back by a lack of imagination in the public sector, the deputy chair of the Local Government Association has warned.

Councillor Richard Kemp challenged commissioners to be more ambitious in their design of services. “I simply cannot understand how much of public sector procurement is still silo based and predicated on an outdated belief that the two choices available to us are in-house or privatised,” he said.

Kemp said the benefits of getting the third sector involved are manifest; the sector is community based and brings with it knowledge and expertise of the area in which it works. And because employees are likely to be local, the money earned re-circulates into the community.
“All major public sector providers need to be far more imaginative in the way that they develop and procure services if we are to get the full benefit of third sector activity from social enterprises, charities and the voluntary sector,” he added.

The call came as the Cabinet Office announced that the Improvement and Development Agency is to run its £2 million programme to train council commissioners in the potential of the third sector.

Minister for the third sector Ed Miliband said: “To bring about genuine culture change we must foster greater understanding, particularly at a local level, of the benefits third sector organisations can bring in delivering services that change people’s lives for the better.”

Meanwhile, Birmingham and Croydon Councils were named by the IDeA and the Communities and Local Government Department as Beacon councils for increasing voluntary and community sector service delivery.

Source: Charity Times News Alert 21st March 2007

Charity chairs need more training

Only a small proportion of chairs receive an induction when joining a charity and most new chairs must learn on the job, according to a study from the Governance Hub.

The research Support and Resource Needs of Trustees and Chairs in Voluntary and Community Organisations also found that despite most chairs already having managerial experience in the private, public or voluntary sector, 25% think they are not offered enough opportunities to learn about their role. In addition, 61% of chairs said they wanted structured learning and less formal opportunities through networks and exchanges with peers, as well as increased access to information, particularly online.

Jolanta Lasota, head of the Governance Hub, said: “Chairs have an important role in the effective governance of voluntary and community organisations. It is therefore imperative that they are equipped well enough to lead their organisation, and work with their board, with competence, confidence and passion.”

To view the full report, visit

Monday, March 19, 2007

BBC Outreach

It can sometimes be quite difficult to track down information about forthcoming BBC Campaigns and schemes, and so you may be interested to hear of the launch of Connect and Create, the BBC's new staff volunteering scheme.

The BBC CSR and partnerships department have made a big effort to open up their channels of communication. BBC Outreach, as its now called, has launched a new website and a newsletter about BBC seasons and CSR work. The first one tells of a seaon on Climate Change in April and BBC School Report News Day on 22nd March. Anyone can subscribe to this newsletter by going on the website.

Friday, March 16, 2007

Working with volunteers - the way ahead: more photos

Further proof that 13th March 2007 at Highgate House was a hard-working day for the 60+ charity managers who attended to update their skills and knowledge about volunteer management issues as well as try out some teambuilding activities. With thanks again to The Sundial Group for sponsoring the event.

Working with Volunteers - the way ahead event 13th March 2007

Pictures from the event at Highgate House near Northampton this week co-hosted by, Northampton Volunteering Centre and The Sundial Group, show teambuilding activities, tree climbing, arm waving, and tea drinking... in fact all the essential skills needed to become a successful charity manager!

We'll post some pictures from the indoor workshops when we were working really hard (honest) if we can find them (if indeed they exist!)