Latest News

Survey - Third Sector Trends in the North 2019

Last Updated 3 July 2019

We would like you to take part in this 10 year study of the voluntary and community sector which is now running right across the North of England.

Whether your organisation or group is big or small, flourishing or struggling financially – or just carrying on more or less as normal – we need to hear from you.

Using the findings, Durham University will build a picture of how organisations and groups work, how they get their resources and how they are planning to work in future.

The research helps to inform national and local government, health organisations and charitable foundations so that they make good decisions on how to invest in the activity of the third sector.
The research also helps the third sector itself to show the extent and value of the work it does.

Please support the survey: it takes just 20 minutes to complete and you shouldn’t need to check up any facts and figures to fill it in. You can complete the survey online on you PC, tablet or phone by clicking the following link:

https://durham.onlinesurveys.ac.uk/third-sector-trends-in-the-north-of-england-2019-live-s-2

The project has generously been supported by Community Foundation serving Tyne & Wear and Northumberland and Power to Change.

Please tell your friends and colleagues to do the same, by sending them an email with the link to the survey or by drawing attention to the study via twitter using #ThirdSectorTrends

Headline findings will be published in December 2019 and the full results will be freely available from spring 2020.

Recent reports from the study so far can be found by clicking the following link:

https://www.communityfoundation.org.uk/knowledge-and-leadership/third-sector-trends-research

Centre for Ageing Better publishes free guide to making the most of older volunteers

Last Updated 10 June 2019

The Centre For Ageing Better has published a free guide to help charities recruit a more diverse pool of older volunteers, warning that if the sector does not adapt the number of volunteers could fall.  Age-friendly and inclusive volunteering has been published this week as part of Volunteers' Week. It offers help to organisations so they can avoid missing out on the talents of people in later life and gives examples and recommendations to recruit and retain older volunteers. The guide provides six principles, which include offering more flexibility, giving opportunities for volunteers to meet and spend time with others and making use of volunteers’ individual strengths.

To read the full article and download the report visit Civil Society website

 

Record number of voluntary groups win the 2019 Queen’s Award for Voluntary Service

Last Updated 10 June 2019

A new record number of 281 voluntary groups have been awarded the 2019 Queen’s Award for Voluntary Service this year. The award is considered “the MBE for volunteer groups" and recognises exceptional service within communities and is the highest honour for volunteer groups in the UK. The winners range from across the UK and included a local Mind volunteer group and several faith-based groups.

Sir Martyn Lewis, chair at the Queen’s Award for Voluntary Service Independent Committee said: “The record number of nominations for this year’s Queen’s Awards for Voluntary Service proves that volunteering at a grassroots level continues to thrive.

Read the full article on the Civil Society website. 

How to make migrating to the cloud easy

Last Updated 10 June 2019

Charity organisations are catching on to the many benefits of ditching traditional IT in favour of the cloud. But making the move can be a daunting process.

In our latest Charity Digital Tech Conference video, Kate White of charity cloud partner Superhighways gives a detailed breakdown of how charities can move to Office 365, the best subscription types to choose and the nitty gritty of moving your data and workloads.

This practical walkthrough looks at the tools and approaches and what to consider in setup, with lots of further resources for charities to go off and explore and case study examples and lessons from real life charities who have done it.

Read the article and watch the YouTube video by visiting the Charity Digital News Website.

Allchurches Trust announces £1m of funding for church-based social projects

Last Updated 10 June 2019

A total of £1m of funding is to be allocated to Christian organisations by grant-maker, Allchurches Trust. Grants of up to £25,000 will be awarded to churches running “innovative, impactful projects” and “major social initiatives”. The trust hopes that the grants will encourage religion among youth and improve church infrastructure. It comes after the trust polled 800 churches to gain an insight into the issues they face.

Visit Civil Society for the full article.

Job opportunity - Connect@TiviotDale

Last Updated 1 May 2019

Thank you for being interested in this exciting new role. Connect@Tiviot Dale are recruiting for a Bridge Centre Lay Worker, who will develop and co-ordinate our Bridge Centre project. We will support people, and help people transform their lives through developing their life skills. We will do all this in the context of a supportive environment and giving people the opportunity to learn about Jesus and the Christian faith. This role is a pivotal aspect in our future development as a Church.

The basic details for the role are: annual salary £6,934 plus up to 6% pension – basic working week will be 10 hours, which will be flexible and will include evening and weekend work.

Purpose and Objectives

The development of a ministry amongst the marginalised in Stockport town centre, in partnership with Christians Against Poverty (CAP) and others. In time, the work may develop to other parts of the Borough, in partnership with other churches.

Your main role will be to manage the CAP life skills course, which run for 24 weeks of the year (3 times per year).  This will demand flexibility such that the hours of work will vary from week to week, by agreement with your line manager, but will average 10 hours per week over each calendar year.

How to apply:

You can click on the links below to download the information you will need to apply for the post or send an A4 SAE with a large letter stamp to the address below and we can post an application pack to you.

Advertisement - pdf version

Application form - Word version

Application form - pdf version

Terms and Conditions - pdf version

Person Specification - pdf version

Closing date: 12 noon on Tuesday 28th May 2019

Interviews: Week beginning 3rd June 2019

The completed application form should be returned to:

admin@churchandcommunity.org.uk (email preferable) or,

‘The Recruitment Officer’, Unit 16, The Wesley Enterprise Centre, Royce Road, Hulme, Manchester M15 5BP.

UK Church Architecture Awards

Last Updated 22 May 2019

Nominations for the 2019 UK Church Architecture Awards are now open. The Awards are run by the National Churches Trust and the Ecclesiastical Architects and Surveyors Association.

  • The Presidents' Award is for the best new church buildings and new designs in church re-ordering, alterations or extensions. 
  • The King of Prussia Gold Medal is for the best church conservation or repair projects. 
  • The Young Church Architect or Surveyor of the Year recognises the contribution being made to church buildings by architects in the early stages of their career.

We look forward to receiving your entries and celebrating your work. The closing date is 1 July 2019. Thank-you.

Read more by visiting the National Churches Trust website.

3 ways to help your leadership team learn about digital

Last Updated 22 May 2019

When we asked charities to tell us last year what the key issues were that they faced in digital, the main challenge wasn’t tools, data or platforms. It was about people, and specifically, leaders. In the 2018 Charity Digital Skills Report, which we run annually with Skills Platform, charity professionals told us that they expected greater digital leadership.

77% told us they wanted their senior team to provide a clear vision of digital and what it could help them to achieve, whilst 53% of respondents would have liked their senior team to have some experience or understanding of digital tools, growing from 46% the year before.

It will be fascinating to see how this has changed and we’d love to hear your views in this year’s report. Of course, there are some leaders who are not only championing digital but inspiring their charities to break new ground with it. But the stats from last year suggest that this is the exception, not the norm.

Read the full article by visiting Lightful website

Charities frustrated over lack of detail on changes to wills notification service

Last Updated 22 May 2019

Charities have said they are disappointed about the lack of details about plans to replace the existing service that notifies charities when they have been left money in someone's will. 

Ed Owen, director of communications at HM Courts and Tribunals Service, was speaking at the Institute of Legacy Management’s Conference on Friday but was able to offer few details about plans for a revamped wills notification service, to the frustration of the audience.

In January HMCTS announced it would end the current arrangement with Smee & Ford in July and that it was working on new system in consultation with stakeholders.

On Friday Owen offered reassurance that the sector would be listened to and said he hoped to give another update next month.

Read the full article on the Civil Society website.

The Queen's Award for Voluntary Service

Last Updated 22 May 2019

The Queen's Award for Voluntary Service is the highest award given to local volunteer groups across the UK to recognise outstanding work done in their own communities. It was created in 2002 to celebrate the anniversary of The Queen's coronation. It is the MBE for volunteer groups.

Any group doing volunteer work that provides a social, economic or environmental service to the local community can be nominated for the award. Each group is assessed on the benefit it brings to the local community and its standing within that community. 

Read more by visiting the The Queen's Award for Voluntary Service website.

23 tips to improve your Twitter engagement

Last Updated 22 May 2019

Twitter is one of the most popular social media platforms when building your charity’s social presence. However, it can be challenging to improve your engagement, especially when you’re not sure how to start.

One of the most common questions we hear from charities that we’re working with is, ‘Do you have any tips on how to improve our Twitter engagement?’

There are more than 500 million tweets sent each day. That’s why we’ve decided to compile a list of tips on how to improve your Twitter engagement whilst keeping up with Twitter’s latest algorithm changes. 

Read the full article on Lightful website.

Ringfence UK aid spending, say faith organisations

Last Updated 22 May 2019

A coalition of faith organisations have urged the government to maintain its current aid budget, ahead of the upcoming Spending Review. 

In an open letter to the prime minister, representatives from some 29 different faith groups including Wold Vision UK called on the government to continue to provide 0.7 per cent of gross national income in aid.

“We, representatives of different faith communities in the UK, have come together ahead of the Comprehensive Spending Review to urge you to maintain the aid budget and protect the quality of UK aid,” they said.

Read the full article on the Civil Society website.

Free GDPR guidance gets an update

Last Updated 22 May 2019

Minimising data risks and decisions around appointing a data protection officer are among updates for the Institute of Fundraising’s GDPR guide.

The Institute of Fundraising has updated its free guidance around General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) legislation.

The updated version of GDPR: The Essentials for Fundraising Organisations, includes the latest tips and advice since the guide was first published in May 2017 (a year before the EU data protection law went live).

Included in the updated version is information on minimising data protection risks as well as advice on appointing a data protection officer.

Read the full article on the Charity Digital News website.

The UK quality standard for good practice in volunteer management

Last Updated 13 May 2019

What is IiV?

Investing in Volunteers (IiV) is the UK quality standard for good practice in volunteer management.

If you want to assess the quality of your volunteer management and involvement, prove and improve the effectiveness of your work with volunteers, and enhance your organisation's reputation, Investing in Volunteers provides the ideal framework.

Achieving the standard shows your volunteers – and potential volunteers – how much they are valued and gives them confidence in your ability to provide an outstanding volunteer experience.

Visit Investing in Volunteers website for the full article and to download the standard. 

Why fewer people are giving to charity and what we can do about it

Last Updated 8 May 2019

CAF's UK Giving 2019 report led to some stark headlines on charitable donations. From the research, the number of people saying they have given to charity has dropped from 61 per cent to 57 per cent over three years. While a drop between two years could be seen as a one-off, the fact that this is over three years, with a year-on-year drop (even if slight each year) is more concerning if it is showing the signs of a trend.

Red the full article on Civil Society website.

How Facebook’s redesign affects charities

Last Updated 8 May 2019

Facebook has announced many updates in the F8 Conference and one of them was the big redesign on their site.

According to Mark Zuckerberg, they are rolling out their biggest redesign in five years. The changes will show up right away in their app and within the next few months in their desktop version.

Read the full article on the Lightful website.

British Muslims change lives with their generosity – we can do more by ensuring our charity is both smart and safe

Last Updated 2 May 2019

The holy month of Ramadan is due to commence early next week where Muslim’s fast between sunrise and sunset. Another notable fixture of this important period is the generosity of the Muslim community. Ramadan is always a time of increased giving from the British Muslim community, which increases exponentially from other times of the year. 

It is well known that British Muslims are enormously generous in their charitable giving and are the most charitable religious community in the UK. Exclusive research from the Muslim Charities Forum (MCF) showed that in Ramadan last year alone, contributions from donors was over £130m to British Muslim INGOs that helped people across 40 countries. A remarkable figure in its own right but to collect such a vast amount of money in a single month alone deserves great recognition and celebration. The generosity of the Muslim community showcases the best of being British and being Muslim. Read the full article by vistining Civil Society website

VOLUNTEERING AND THE U.N. SUSTAINABLE DEVELOPMENT GOALS – TELL THE GOVERNMENT WHAT YOU’RE DOING

Last Updated 25 April 2019

We all know that volunteering has an incredible impact on society in this country and across the world, but have you ever thought that volunteers are playing a crucial role in sustainable development?

You may well be thinking, what on earth is sustainable development?

In its broadest sense, sustainable development is the idea that tackling climate change, conserving natural resources and protecting our natural environments should go hand-in-hand with efforts to eradicate poverty, improve education and reduce inequality.

Read the full article by visiting the NCVO website

‘Charities should be better at reporting wider benefits to society’, says BHF director

Last Updated 23 April 2019

Speaking at Civil Society Media's Trustee Exchange conference in London last week, Mike Taylor, commercial director at BHF, said charities were “not great at telling that story”.

Taylor said charity retailers in particular had a story to tell about the “virtuous cycle” their operations provide to society.

Visit the Civil Society website to read the full article.

Joseph Rowntree Charitable Trust to ‘Significantly’ Increase Grant Spending

Last Updated 23 April 2019

Significant increase in grant spending

WE are pleased to announce plans to significantly increase our grant spending from around £7 million per year, to over £10 million per year, for the next ten years.

Trustees decided to increase grant spending by more than £3 million a year as part of a ten yearly review – the Decennial Review – of the Trust.

The review made a commitment to work to increase the number of grants given to organisations outside London to achieve a greater geographical diversity of funding across the UK. The Trust will also meet demand by making a number of larger, longer or core grants to charities where suitable.

Significant increase in grant spending 

WE are pleased to announce plans to significantly increase our grant spending from around £7 million per year, to over £10 million per year, for the next ten years.

Trustees decided to increase grant spending by more than £3 million a year as part of a ten yearly review – the Decennial Review – of the Trust.

The review made a commitment to work to increase the number of grants given to organisations outside London to achieve a greater geographical diversity of funding across the UK. The Trust will also meet demand by making a number of larger, longer or core grants to charities where suitable.

Significant increase in grant spending 

WE are pleased to announce plans to significantly increase our grant spending from around £7 million per year, to over £10 million per year, for the next ten years.

Trustees decided to increase grant spending by more than £3 million a year as part of a ten yearly review – the Decennial Review – of the Trust.

The review made a commitment to work to increase the number of grants given to organisations outside London to achieve a greater geographical diversity of funding across the UK. The Trust will also meet demand by making a number of larger, longer or core grants to charities where suitable.

Visit the Joseph Rowntree Charitable Trust (JRCT) website for more information.

The best UK charity text donation services

Last Updated 23 April 2019

So what next for charities who still want to take advantage of SMS giving? We’ve put together this quick guide to a few of the best UK text-to-donate platforms and services. While there are a few mobile marketing agencies offer text payment services that can be used by charities, we’ve picked out the ones that are dedicated, standalone platforms for charities in their own right.

Visit Charity Digital News to read the full article. 

CAF - Boost Your Online Donations

Last Updated 12 April 2019

Your donor's online giving experience begins with your charity's website. If it's too complicated, donors just won't bother. We've put together some top tips on how you can make your online donation journey as easy as possible.

Read the full aretle on the CAF website.

 

TCC April eBulletin

Last Updated 8 April 2019

Our Movement for Good awards

Last Updated 1 April 2019

On Tuesday 23 April, we’re launching our Movement for Good awards – a programme designed to give £1million to charities. 

We want to put our giving directly into the hands of remarkable organisations (like yours perhaps) that are changing people’s lives for the better.

Our £1million giving programme has two funding categories:

500 charities will be awarded £1,000

We know that for many charities, £1,000 can make a real difference. The £1,000 awards will be open for nominations from Tuesday 23 April to Friday 17 May, to eligible charities registered in the UK and Republic of Ireland. This could range from small volunteer-run groups to larger, well-known organisations. Please note, anyone can nominate but you must be an eligible charity to win an award. 

10 charities will be awarded a £50,000 grant

We know the importance of longer-term funding for larger charities, especially when trying to bring ambitious new ideas to life. 

We’re actively championing innovation, giving charities the backing they need to propel their plans forward. The £50,000 awards will be open for applications from Monday 17 June to Friday 26 July, to eligible charities registered in the UK and Republic of Ireland with an income of less than £5million, which support a cause that we know our communities care about.

Visit the Ecclesiastical website for more information.

Charities have 'mediocre' financial governance, report says

Last Updated 1 April 2019

A Charity Finance Group (CFG) report has raised concerns about the financial expertise and diversity of charity trustees. The second annual report by CFG and MHA MacIntyre Hudson found that nearly nine in 10 charities think they could benefit from having greater understanding of financial governance.

Read more by visiting Civil Society website

Job opportunity - Connect@TiviotDale

Last Updated 23 May 2019

Thank you for being interested in this exciting new role. Connect@Tiviot Dale are recruiting for a Bridge Centre Lay Worker, who will develop and co-ordinate our Bridge Centre project. We will support people, and help people transform their lives through developing their life skills. We will do all this in the context of a supportive environment and giving people the opportunity to learn about Jesus and the Christian faith. This role is a pivotal aspect in our future development as a Church.

The basic details for the role are: annual salary £6,934 plus up to 6% pension – basic working week will be 10 hours, which will be flexible and will include evening and weekend work.

Purpose and Objectives

The development of a ministry amongst the marginalised in Stockport town centre, in partnership with Christians Against Poverty (CAP) and others. In time, the work may develop to other parts of the Borough, in partnership with other churches.

Your main role will be to manage the CAP life skills course, which run for 24 weeks of the year (3 times per year).  This will demand flexibility such that the hours of work will vary from week to week, by agreement with your line manager, but will average 10 hours per week over each calendar year.

How to apply:

You can click on the links below to download the information you will need to apply for the post or send an A4 SAE with a large letter stamp to the address below and we can post an application pack to you.

Advertisement - pdf version

Application form - Word version

Application form - pdf version

Terms and Conditions - pdf version

Person Specification - pdf version

Closing date: 12 noon on Tuesday 28th May 2019

Interviews: Week beginning 3rd June 2019

The completed application form should be returned to:

admin@churchandcommunity.org.uk (email preferable) or,

‘The Recruitment Officer’, Unit 16, The Wesley Enterprise Centre, Royce Road, Hulme, Manchester M15 5BP.

Small Charities Coalition launches tool to help charities register with the Charity Commission

Last Updated 25 March 2019

The Small Charities Coalition has launched a new website, Charity Setup, to help charities set up their organisation and to register with the Charity Commission.

This guide will steer you through the logistics of setting up a charity in simple steps and includes information on regulation, charity structure, trustees and more.

Visit the tool here: https://charitysetup.org.uk/

Burnley Dementia Action Alliance - DEMENTIA INFORMATION SYSTEM

Last Updated 25 March 2019

Get your dementia activities, events and marketing materials promoted to Burnley residents

Burnley Dementia Action Alliance has been successful in obtaining funding to develop an appropriate information system aimed at people who are living or supporting someone with dementia, working in partnership with BPRCVS. This was an agreed action from the meeting last year. 

In order to understand the needs and create the best information platform we would like to collate any information that you have about activities, events, good news stories and support, etc. This may also include any literature or publicity that you have produced, or activities that are specifically aimed at people who are living with dementia to be promoted to Burnley residents. 

Visit BPRCVS website

Localgiving launches biggest Magic Little Grants Fund to date

Last Updated 25 March 2019

Localgiving has launched this year’s Magic Little Grants Fund: its biggest ever, thanks to an award of £550,000 from Postcode Community Trust.

The Magic Little Grants Fund is funded by the People’s Postcode Lottery and offers grants of £500 to local charities and community groups with an annual income under £250,000, that support and inspire people to participate in sports or exercise, with the primary aim of improving the physical health of participants.

Read the full article on the UK Fundraising website

Charities need 'radical rethink' to support older people, says Centre for Ageing Better

Last Updated 25 March 2019

Charities, government and businesses need a “radical rethink” to support older people, the Centre for Ageing Better has said. In a report, called The State of Ageing in 2019, the charity said that the number of people aged 65 and over is expected to increase by 44 per cent by 2037. It said that the ageing population will have effects on health, services and public spending, and called upon the charity sector and government to tackle these issues.

Read the full article on Civil Society website

Scouts partners with GoFundMe on fundraising badge (Civil Society)

Last Updated 25 March 2019

Scouts can now earn a fundraising badge by working with the online fundraising platform GoFundMe to launch a campaign and raise money for a chosen cause. GoFundMe approached the Scout Association about the partnership that will see young people involved with the Scouts get tips and resources about online fundraising.  Resources will be aimed at Scouts, who are between ten and a half and 14 years old and Explorers, between 14 and 18 years old. The platform will give tips and resources to Scout groups and leaders to help the young people select a charity or cause and fundraise and aims to inspire the next generation to be active citizens and connect with charities. Read the full article on Civily Society website.

Manchester and Stockport District - District Partnership Fund (DPF)

Last Updated 25 March 2019

Manchester and Stockport District - District Partnership Fund (DPF)

The District Partnership Fund (DPF) was set up by the Manchester & Stockport District to provide advice and support to those who join. Churches have access to advice and information on day to day matters that they sometimes have difficulty finding.

TCC deliver the DPF on behalf of the District , with DPF membership starting from 1st May 2018. The District Trustees have delegated the management of the fund to the District Grants Committee.

Those becoming members do so for an initial 3 year period. The cost is 1% of available assets at the end of the financial year. If you have no reserves or cash in hand at the end of the year it is ‘free’, £5,000 would be £50 and so on. Churches and Circuits can join at any time.

Publicity leaflets and information have been provided through a variety of sources including the District bulletin and Synod. Recently there has been publicity sent to Circuit treasurers and included in bulletins and the DPF information is on the District website. This states that we are willing to attend church councils or circuit meetings to inform / answer questions.

The enquiries concerning support for the members of the DPF have been mainly centred around property and financial matters, which are the issues raised by Churches and Circuits prior to it being set up.

To encourage and remind those who have joined the DPF the Circuit/Church treasurer has been contacted in order to arrange a meeting so that any matters requiring help/support can be raised.

Any Church or Circuit that wishes to sign up to the fund can contact us at TCC: dpf@tcandc.org.uk

You can read the pdf leaflet from the Manchester and Stockport District

Charity publishes interactive children’s services map

Last Updated 27 February 2019

The map has been published online by the Children’s Society and is part of analysis by a group of charities into children’s services funding cuts in England.

The Children’s Society has launched an online interactive map so that people in England can see the extent of funding cuts to children’s services in their area.

The interactive map has been launched as part of a research project by a group of children and young people’s charities to highlight the impact of austerity and rising demand for care services on council’s children’s services budgets.

The research has found that children’s services budgets across England have been cut by a third per child since 2010.

Read the full article on Charity Digital News website.

The best online fundraising platforms for charities

Last Updated 25 February 2019

There has been an explosion in the number of dedicated online fundraising plaforms for fundraising, letting charities and their supporters quickly and effectively raise money. But not all of them are free to use, or as cost effective for charities.

JustGiving was one of the first online fundraising platforms, having collected over £4 billion for charities since its launch in 2001. But the company deducts a 5% fee from each donation made through the site and charges a monthly fee for charities. The other go-to platform, Virgin Money Giving, charges a £150 fee to register.

Read the full article on Charity Digital News website.

Instagram to launch new donation tool

Last Updated 25 February 2019

Instagram has announced it will be launching a new tool, allowing people to donate through Instagram stories.

The announcement was made at the Facebook Community Summit at the company’s HQ last week. The tool hasn’t yet been rolled out but is due to be implemented in the coming months.

Users of the picture-led social media platform will be able to support a charity by adding a ‘donation sticker’ to their Instagram stories.

The one-click sticker is designed to encourage followers to click through to a charity or non-profit of their choice and donate to a good cause. 

The announcement follows an announcement made by Facebook in November last year, which said people had raised over $1bn for charities through Charitable Giving on Facebook.

Read the full article on the Charity Times website.

Online giving in the UK increases 5.5% in 2018

Last Updated 25 February 2019

The report also found that 24% of all online donations globally were made using mobile devices, continuing a five-year trend in the growth of giving through mobile devices. The findings indicate that organisations without mobile-friendly websites, donation forms or email functionality may begin to find themselves at a distinct disadvantage in an increasingly competitive giving landscape.

Read the fulll article on Charity Digital News website.

Charities must improve storytelling to attract more major donors

Last Updated 5 February 2019

Charities need to change the way they share information to attract major donors, a charity consultant has advised. Speaking at the Institute of Fundraising's Major Donor Fundraising Conference on Monday, Caroline Underwood, chief executive of fundraising consultancy, Philanthropy Company, outlined the major trends in philanthropy and major giving and said that the information that charities share needs to be easily “digestible” if they hope to attract donors. 

Read the full article on the Civil Society webste

VAT and Church repairs

Last Updated 5 February 2019

The House of Commons Library has published a report examining how construction work for churches is treated for VAT in the UK, proposals for reform in this area, and the changes made in Budget 2012, removing the zero rate of VAT which had applied to alteration work on listed buildings. It also gives details of the current grant scheme for church repairs.

The full paper can be read on the UK Parliament website.

To date the Government have published no specific details as to the UK’s post-Brexit relationship with the EU on VAT, beyond stating its ambition for an agreement on “common processes and procedures” to avoid the need for any new VAT-related border controls on goods moving between the UK and the EU. It has also confirmed that, under the draft Withdrawal Agreement concluded in November 2018, the UK would remain compliant with EU law, including VAT law, during the ‘transition period’ prior to the implementation of the new, yet to be negotiated, UK-EU partnership arrangements. In turn, this underpins the Government’s current position regarding the rate of VAT on church repairs.

Community Buildings - Empowering Design Practices

Last Updated 5 February 2019

Drawing on their work with historic places of worship across the UK, this site offers suggestions for introducing new features to community spaces whilst minimising impact on the existing fabric and style.

This website is a great starting point if you are planning a refurbishment. The themes will start your converstation off on the right foot. 

Click here to visit Explore Design

Charities that don't embrace digital soon will go the way of Woolworths

Last Updated 5 February 2019

Most charities do not have a digital strategy, lack digitally trained staff and should act now to avoid falling behind, according to findings from The Charity Digital Code Benchmark Report.

The benchmarking tool was launched in the autumn and this is the first report, which collated the results 150 charities.

It revealed that 63 per cent of charities do not have a codified digital strategy. 75 per cent of charities also have a shortage of digitally trained staff, which is holding them back from using digital in an effective way.

Read the full article.

February eBulletin

Last Updated 1 February 2019

Read our latest eBulletin.

Writing a Constitution

Last Updated 31 January 2019

A Constitution is a set of rules stating what your group wants to achieve and how it will be run.

Why do you need a Constitution?

Some groups feel that they do not want to be so formal as to have a Constitution. There are many groups of friends or acquaintances who meet together informally for years for a specific purpose and who do not have a Constitution and feel they can manage very well without rules.

However, when a group embarks on certain activities or takes on responsibilities, then more formality is needed. An example of this is raising funds to provide a service to the community, then writing a set of rules would become a priority.

Visit High Peak CVS to read more .

Charity governance: despite some good practice, a way to go

Last Updated 31 January 2019

In difficult economic times strong governance is more important than ever to enable charities to respond effectively and rapidly to emerging risks and deliver on their objectives.

Grant Thornton has reviewed the annual reports of the top 100 charities, assessing disclosures on areas including the board of trustees, risk management and impact reporting. The research highlights many examples of good governance practice – for example, the 31% of the top 100 board positions being held by women, an achievement most corporations would envy. Read the full article.

CHARITY ETHICAL PRINCIPLES - NCVO guide

Last Updated 28 January 2019

These principles aim to support charities, their governing bodies, and those who work and volunteer in and with them in recognising and resolving ethical issues and conflicts, and make charities a safer place.

This is intended as an enabling document that draws together and underpins what many charities do already, and which all charities aspire to do. 

To download the guide, visit the NCVO website.

How to set up a text donation service for your charity

Last Updated 14 January 2019

We have found a handy guide that expalins how text donations work. 

Receiving donations via SMS text messaging has become increasingly popular in recent years due to its ease-of-use and convenience for people who are on the go, short of time, or don't have cash on them. Around 89% of adults in the UK own a mobile phone, so it's a fundraising channel with huge potential. Read more from Markel Direct.

A list of current companies offering this service can be found on the Charity Digital News website.

Find your local CVS

Last Updated 12 December 2018

A CVS is a key resource and information point for local voluntary and community organisations. Such support can make the difference between a community need being identified and responded to, or not. Support can be wideranging. Key elements may include:

  • funding information
  • employment / financial services and advice
  • legal / constitutional information
  • meeting space and office accommodation
  • office services
  • regular mailings
  • training and / or information about other training providers
  • general advice and guidance
  • recruitment and placement of volunteers.

Get the fmap of CVSs in the North West. Click on the one closest to you for website and contact information. 

Socially responsible investing: a guide for charity trustees

Last Updated 28 November 2018

Victoria Hoskins, an investment director from Rathbones Greenbank, has written this comprehensive guide to provide charity trustees with an overview of what socially responsible investing means and what you might consider when defining your charity’s investment policy.

View the publication.

Brexit Civil Society Alliance launches website to protect sector interests in EU withdrawal

Last Updated 28 November 2018

The Brexit Civil Society Alliance is a UK wide alliance of charities, voluntary and campaigning organisations, all working together to ensure that the voices of civil society are heard in the Brexit process.