The Scottish Government has produced a major report on workplace relations and productivity which includes the recommendation that workers in the third sector workers should receive a living wage.
Third Force News has coverage at http://thirdforcenews.org.uk/management/news/government-welcomes-living-wage-for-charity-workers, or see recommendation 21, amongst others, in the ‘Working Together Review’ summary page http://www.scotland.gov.uk/Publications/2014/08/4647
The Commission on Voluntary Sector and Ageing has issued a new discussion paper on the future of volunteering in an ageing society. The Guardian has an article from the chief executive of New Philanthropy Capital, at http://www.theguardian.com/voluntary-sector-network/2014/aug/15/can-charities-keep-attracting-ageing-population, which starts:
The findings from NAVCA’s latest quarterly survey of members suggests that whilst the outlook may not be improving for many it has at least stabilised. The survey, the 9th in the series, illustrates that NAVCA members are less pessimistic about their prospects, with a sharp increase in those looking to extend their range of services. For the first time since the survey began more are planning to take on staff rather than reduce numbers. The survey uses a representative sample panel of NAVCA members to track trends in local voluntary action. The latest survey took place in July. Surveys have been run every three months since July 2012.
For the first time more respondents said that staffing levels will rise (17%) rather than fall (4%) over the next three months, although 80% expect staffing numbers will remain the same. Collaboration remains key for NAVCA members. A regular finding of this survey series is that NAVCA members are looking to increase collaboration with other local support organisations. This trend continues with over half (54%) anticipating more collaboration. Other charities are also seen as key to future success by 57% of respondents.
Yet again a majority of NAVCA members (58%) see the NHS as key to success and a similar number (54%) say their relations with local NHS bodies are improving. This quarter shows more respondents saying relationships with local authorities have got worse (21%) rather than improved (17%).
Neil Cleeveley, acting Chief Executive of NAVCA, said;
“It’s too early to tell if this marks a turning point. We need to dig a bit further to understand how things are changing. We know, for example, that there are significant cuts in public spending on the horizon whatever the outcome of the General Election.”
“What the survey tells me is that NAVCA members are expert at making the most out of the resources available. They are working hard to build partnerships to make sure local charities and community groups are well supported and are responding with new services to meet new needs.”
The Pioneering Care Partnership (PCP) is an award-winning North East charity whose mission is ‘Health, well-being and Learning for all’. We are currently recruiting staff to support delivery of our Tees Valley Healthwatch (TVHW) contracts which are Healthwatch Stockton-on-Tees, Healthwatch Middlesbrough and Healthwatch Redcar and Cleveland.
National sector bodies NCVO, ACEVO and Charity Finance Group have all heavily criticised Charity Commission proposals to require charities to declare campaigning spending and government income in their annual returns.
As reported by Civil Society Media, http://www.civilsociety.co.uk/governance/news/content/17979/
A raft of senior civil society activists across the globe have endorsed an open letter which addresses the possibility that “those of us who work in civil society organisations nationally and globally have come to be identified as part of the problem” when it comes to deteriorating human rights and equality.
A three month research project from the Institute for Research and Innovation in Social Services (Iriss) and the Coalition of Care and Support Providers, Scotland concluded there are pressures beginning to affect the work of care and support services in Scotland. Social care staff in Scotland are facing a bigger workload and higher levels of anxiety.
A Voluntary Sector Review journal article, written by two King’s College London researchers, has been made open access.
‘Fragmentation and competition: voluntary organisations experiences of support for family carers’ draws on a large study looking at social care practice with carers, to illustrate how changes in social care commissioning and cuts in funding have created difficulties for organisations providing practical help and support to family carers. http://www.ingentaconnect.com/content/tpp/vsr/2014/00000005/00000002/art00007
On Fundraising Resources, http://vr.volresource.org.uk/org/fundraising/:
Accelerator is a new crowdfunding platform from IdeasTap’s “where we help you to realise your creative vision”. It enables raising money for your creative project by offering rewards for the people who fund it. It must be a project – a creative endeavour with a fixed timeline and a clear outcome. It could be a play, an exhibition, a book, a film or a product. See http://www.ideastap.com/crowdfunding (Via Voluntary Arts Network)
A research officer at the Institute for Volunteering Research (part of NCVO) summarises some new research gleaned from attending the 11th International Society for Third Sector Research Conference in Germany recently.
A new project from SCVO will see 400 interns taken on in Scottish third sector organisations with business growth ideas. The interns must be qualified to at least HND level, and will be on top of existing internship programmes.
NAVCA believes that the Charity Commission’s proposals for the 2015 Annual Return need a major rethink and should not proceed in their current form. The proposals, which the Charity Commission has been consulting on since June, would require every charity to state how much income it receives from public service delivery, how much it spends on campaigning, whether it has a remuneration policy for paying executive staff and whether it has conducted a review of its financial controls. All charities with income between £10,000 and £500,000 would have to provide more financial information than currently required.
NAVCA says that proposals will impose significant additional burdens on charities, in particular smaller ones, without providing meaningful and useful information. It runs counter to the Government’s desire to reduce red tape and is an overreaction to recent political attacks on charities.
Neil Cleeveley, acting chief executive of NAVCA, said;
“These really are badly thought out proposals that will do nothing to promote public trust in charities. Having already said that it does not have the resources to do its job, the Commission is creating extra work for itself and thousands of charities without offering any tangible benefits for anyone.”
“These proposals appear to be a reaction to recent political attacks in the national media. The regulation of charities should be about maintaining public trust not about pandering to party politics.”