March 2018

Monthly Archives

‘Alphabet 12’ from Project Aspie

On the 28th April 2018 Project Aspie (in conjunction with BMAG museum) presents a Relaxed Session of Third Series of ‘Alphabet 12’ which will cover various group discussions including the up and coming planned ‘Alphabet Quad’ Activity scheduled for spring 2018.

Date and details of the ‘Alphabet Quad’ Activity will be confirmed at the session.

Relaxed Sessions of ‘Alphabet 12’ enables group members to discuss personal development and various subjects in Confidence and Motivational Team Building in a group environment.

Event Facilitators will be contributing to the session.

The session will take place at The Learning Zone, Birmingham Museum & Art Gallery between 1:00pm – 4:30pm. Refreshments and the opportunity to network will also take place.

For more details and information on ‘Alphabet 12’ please feel free to contact Project Aspie on 07802 658150 / 07821548904 or e-mail graeme@projectaspie.org.uk or margaret@projectaspie.org.uk


Spotlight on Sandwell Advocacy

1) Tell us what you do
We are an independent charity offering advocacy, established in 1993, to ensure people are listened to and have a voice, that peoples rights are taken into account and that prejudice and discrimination are challenged. We work to safeguard and protect people’s rights.

Advocacy for Young Carers- we have advocates to bridge short and long-term support needs of young people who take on a caring role. We look to support them and their families in any number of ways. We ensure that the young people are at the heart of the decision making process and that their voices are heard and their needs are taken into account.

2) What is your proudest achievement?
We have been operating in Sandwell for over 24 years. I am sure you will agree this is quite an achievement for a small charity.
I’m proud to be part of an organisation like Sandwell Advocacy, working towards making a difference. All of our staff have worked in Sandwell for many years and have a wealth of knowledge and experience across the voluntary and public sector.

3) What is your experience of support received from SCVO?
We are proud to be SCVO members and we’ve got value for money for our membership.

In recent months we have secured small pots of money which have enabled us to add value to the service we provide by offering services to the people we support. We were made aware of these through SCVO emails and meetings.

More generally, SCVO is there pulling people together so we’re stronger.

4) What is the most valuable lesson you have learnt about working with people in Sandwell?
Our staff and volunteer workforce and advocacy partners work well together. Despite what we are told in the national media we have found that Sandwell residents are willing to pull together and support each other. People are proud of their culture and history and have a strong sense of belonging within the six towns.

5) What are your plans for the future and some of the challenges you face?
We continue to look at offering advocacy in new areas using the models that we know work well. Additionally we are interested in creative and innovative ways of having voices heard. Our latest HLF project, Living Memory will be exploring and sharing unique photography collections and life stories from the diverse communities across the Black Country. We believe that heritage and arts projects are an ideal platform to advocate for the wider community.

6) How can SCVO help to support your organisation in the future?
Continue what you do best – keeping us up to date with relevant legislation, information, funding, training and networking.

For more information:
www.sandwelladvocacy.org
Contact: 0121 520 8070
Email: sandwelladvocacy@btconnect.com


New Charity Checklist Part 2

Following on from Charity Checklist Part 1 below is the final instalment designed to help you to establish your charity and some of the things you’ll need to consider.

6. Implement a communications strategy
Following on from creating a brand identity, it is now important to find your voice and use it effectively to communicate. In order to fundraise, raise awareness and make a difference you need to get your message out there. Any piece of communication, a photograph or an article, should be well considered and compelling.

 7. Get online
One of the best ways to get your charity and your message out there is by having an online presence. This means a website that can be accessed on a mobile phone, as well as social media accounts especially Twitter and Facebook.

 8. Invest in training
Investing in training for your staff is worthwhile and will see you reaping the rewards. Fundraising in particular is a skill that is hugely important for anyone working at a charity.

 9. Find trustees
You usually need at least three unrelated people with a range of skills to serve on a governing board. Their main role is to take general control of the decisions, direction and administration of the charity.

10. Register with the Charity Commission
If your charity’s income is at least £5,000 per year, you must apply to register with the Charity Commission. Find out more on their website.

Source: Directory of Social Change


FSI Spotlight on Governance and Compliance

FSI released their full Essential Trustee Series last November to support trustees to meet their responsibilities. This month they have released a spotlight on Governance and Compliance.

Good governance will help steer a charity to best reach its mission, use its resources most effectively and to set its direction.

Watch FSI’s quick video to provide you with an overview by clicking here.

FSI recommends that their Essential Trustee Series  are used to refresh the knowledge of current trustees and that potential trustees could review these prior to making their decision to join the board as it will give them a real understanding of the responsibilities they are taking on.  They are also great tools to use in the Induction of new trustees.

To view the full FSI Essential Trustees Series click here.

Source: FSI


National Churches Trust

The National Churches Trust has announced that the next closing date for its new Maintenance Grant Scheme is the 23rd May 2018. The National Churches Trust, supports the repair and revitalisation of church buildings for the benefit of all the community.

This is a pilot programme, in partnership with the Pilgrim Trust, offering awards of between £1,000 and £3,000 to encourage churches to act on small, urgent maintenance issues and repairs to listed church buildings, as identified in a recent Quinquennial Inspection Report, condition survey or report by a gutter management contractor, and costed at between £2,000 and £10,000.

Proposed works must be to the main listed church building, and applicants must be able to show they have already raised 50% of the total repair costs, and to have obtained two quotes for the works.

More information


Architectural Heritage Fund

The Architectural Heritage Fund (AHF) which supports the conservation and regeneration of historic buildings, has announced that the next closing date for applications to its Project Development Grant scheme (up to £25,000) is the 11th May 2018.

Charities, not for profit companies, CICs, Parish and Town councils can apply for funding to assist with the costs of developing and coordinating a project which helps to find a sustainable use for an historic building and takes it towards the start of work on site.
The grants are intended to support project development costs only and not for on-site capital works.

The AHF also makes Project Viability Grants (PVG) of up to £7,500 to fund studies to look at potential uses for a building and at its current condition. Applications to the Project Viability grants as well as smaller Project Development grants of up to £7,500 can be submitted at any time and are considered on a quarterly basis.

More information


DM Thomas Foundation

The next deadline to apply to the DM Thomas Foundation Central Grants Programme is 8th May 2018. Grants of up to £30,000 are available to registered charities for projects that improve education and health for young people in three key areas:

Children and young people with disabilities
Children and young people who are sick in hospital
Children and young people who are life limited (requiring palliative care)

The Foundation is a small charity and generally will not make awards of over £30,000 (per year). Funding can be requested for one-off projects or for up to 2 years’ work.

Applications from schools and hospitals are welcomed if they are made through an appropriate registered charity.

If favoured, grant applications for up to £5,000 can be approved by the Director, up to £10,000 can be approved by the Grants Committee, and applications for more than £10,000 are recommended to the Trustees for final approval.

More information


Local Giving: Don’t be an April Fool; be a Local Hero!

Localgiving’s annual Local Hero campaign launches on 1st April and runs until 30th April 2018.

Local Hero highlights the incredible ideas and feats of local charity fundraisers. During the campaign individuals raising funds through Localgiving fundraising pages will compete with other runners, riders, and gliders for a top prize of £1,000.

All active fundraisers will be automatically added to the campaign and ranked on the Local Hero leaderboard according to the number of unique donors who sponsor their page (10 unique donors equals 10 points, 15 unique donors equals 15 points, etc). The leaderboard will be available on this page once the campaign is launched.

At the end of the campaign £5,000 in prizes will be distributed among the causes supported by the top 20 fundraisers. Prizes will be awarded as follows:

1st: £1,000
2nd – 5th: £500 each
6th – 10th: £200 each
11th – 20th: £100 each

Whether you’re a runner, a painter or an abstainer this is an amazing chance to help a local charity or community group near you raise their profile and raise some extra funding. All you have to do is set up a fundraising page and persuade as many people as possible to donate between the 1st and 30th of April 2018.

If your charity or community group is already a member of Localgiving, now is the perfect time to get your community, supporters and local press involved in raising money for your cause. You can access template newsletters, press releases and banners by logging into you account and going to the Local Hero section of your fundraising toolkit.  You can also send your press release or story directly to your local paper through Localgiving.

Ahead of Local Hero, we are  running a series of free webinars to help you make the most of the campaign. All webinars start at 1.30pm and everyone is welcome.  Register today!


Friends Provident Foundation

The next deadline for applications to the Friends Provident Foundation – Building Resilient Economies programme is the 8th May 2018.

The programme aims to build a more resilient, fairer and sustainable economic system. Organisations working within the UK who want to help transform financial systems into ‘engines for social benefit’ can apply for grants through the Foundation. Grants in the past have been up to £200,000 to cover capital or revenue funding, core costs or project costs.

Activities funded will fit closely with the aims of the Foundation and deliver one of two key outcomes. These are:

“System Change”
“Local Economic Resilience”.

Under ‘Systems Change’ the Foundation will be looking to support projects that develop and demonstrate methods that will effectively change policy and corporate behaviours in pursuit of wider social objectives.

Under ‘Local economic resilience’ the Foundation is looking to support projects that share learning about effective ways for communities to create more sustainable economic systems and retain more of the value generated. This might include creating community assets or new approaches to local finance.

More information


Donations to Charity Hit £10.3bn in 2017

Charities in the UK received more than £10bn worth of donations during 2017, despite the fact that the number of people giving actually fell, according to the Charities Aid Foundation.

The UK Giving report, published today by CAF, showed that the total amount given to charity during 2017 was £10.3bn, an increase of over £600m from the previous year. The report showed that the total amount donated to charity during 2017 increased, despite the fact that the number of people donating to charity actually decreased.

The report, compiled from data taken from surveys of over 12,000 people conducted by YouGov during 2017, found that 60 per cent of respondents said they had donated to charity at some point during 2017, compared to 61 per cent of respondents the previous year. The number of people sponsoring someone for charity also fell from 37 per cent to 35 per cent in 2017.

In terms of age demographics, the report said that “older people continue to give the most” to charity but found a strong increase in donations from so-called “millennials” – with the 16-24-year-old age bracket giving more money to charity than those aged 25-34 for the first time.

Over a quarter of survey respondents said they had donated to a medical research charity at some point during 2017, making such charities the most popular in terms of donations. A further 24 per cent of donors gave to animal welfare charities, while 23 per cent of those surveyed said they had donated to a children’s charity, hospital and hospice or an overseas aid organisation at some point.

Trust in charities ‘stable’
CAF said that overall trust in charities “remained stable” in 2017, with 51 per cent of respondents still believing most charities to be “trustworthy”. Respondents aged 16-24 were the most trusting of charity, with 57 per cent of total respondents saying charities were trustworthy. Slightly less than half of both the 45-64 and 65+ age groups responded in the same way.

The report also found that women are more likely to donate money to charity than men in general, and more likely to support just about every kind of charity cause except for sports and recreation. The report said that “young people are the most likely to give to physical and mental health care, homeless people and educational institutions” while the oldest age group are more likely to give to “hospitals and hospices, religious organisations” and charities looking after the elderly.

However, while men are less likely to give to charity than women, those who do continue to give more per person. The report showed that the average man donated £46 a month to charity, compared to £42 per woman. However, average monthly donations by women have increased from £35 a month to £42 since 2016.

John Low, chief executive of the Charities Aid Foundation, said: “Although total donations are slightly up, the number of people giving has fallen. It’s far too soon to tell if that represents a trend, but we need to be careful if giving becomes concentrated in fewer, larger donations.

“It is telling that men are less likely to give money than women, although those who do on average give more, men are also less likely to volunteer. But the good news is that young millennials seem to be giving more than in previous years and that bodes well for the future.

“Crucially, we note that trust in charities remains stable. While we in charities must always strive for the best and never be complacent about the high standards expected of us, the enduring trust people have in our country’s voluntary sector should be a source of pride, and something precious we need to protect.”

Source: Civil Society


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