Third Sector Blog

A collection of non-profit, charity, social enterprise & third sector blogs focussing on technology, social media & more

Ask the expert: How should our charity’s accounts reflect uncertainties over local authority funding?

Disclose your position but prove you will survive for the next 12 months, says Helena Wilkinson from accountancy firm Chantrey Vellacott DFK Q. The majority of our funding, some 80%, will be retendered by the local authority and we will only know the outcome by December. Our accounts are due to be signed in September. How do we deal with this? Helena says: With regard to the accounts themselves, the issue here relates to the going concern concept and a useful guide is available from the Financial Reporting Council on going concern and liquidity risk – written for directors of UK companies but equally useful to all types of entities. Read the Rest

Isn’t all community development asset-based?

Kevin Lewis wonders whether asset based community development risks being just another coat of gloss on community development Among the exhibits at yesterday’s People Powered Change meeting was a picture of Jim Diers and Cormac Russell at the door of No 10 Downing Street. Does this mean community development has come of age? Here are two respected representatives of community development practice, poised at the threshold to influence British government at its heart. Has community development finally made it to respectability, ready to play a consistent role in social policy? They complement each other as speakers. Jim, from Seattle and elsewhere, delivers his experience of involving local people in creative Read the Rest

Jim Diers presentation from the People Powered Change event, 20 June 2011

US community development expert Jim Diers’ presentations from the People Powered Change Event A group of over 80 community activists and other professionals attended the People Powered Change event, organised by the Big Lottery Fund, to discuss all aspects of asset based community development. Here are Jim Diers’ presentations. You can also read our live coverage of the event, or watch interviews with the main speakers here. In his first presentation, Jim Diers explains what asset based community development is, and the latent power of communities. In his second presentation, Jim focuses on the power and role of agencies in community development. This content is brought to you by Guardian Read the Rest

Live Q&A: Cutting and controlling costs – Tuesday 28 June, 1-3pm

Our live Q&A will help you cope with financial challenges by giving expert advice on managing your costs effectively Controlling costs is an important part of management at any time. But cuts in public spending are forcing charities to work even harder to extract value from their expenditure. As a result, as Saba Salman writes, “charities are being forced to think more creatively about cost-cutting, with a combination of good advice, shopping around and negotiation leading to potential savings”. Our latest live Q&A will explore how charities can continue to provide and expand their services despite the lack of funds, including • Making savings when there’s very little left to Read the Rest

The Guardian Charity Awards 2011

Are you a small or medium-sized charity delivering real solutions to problems, but struggling for profile? The Guardian Charity Awards 2011 aim to recognise smaller charities which make an essential contribution to social welfare in the UK. For 19 years, the Awards have showcased excellence and given a much-needed boost to organisations struggling to get the profile and funding they need to move forward. You can find out about the successes of our past winners here. If you are a small charity making a big difference and believe your achievements could inspire others, then we want to hear from you. Entering the awards is free and you could win £6,000, Read the Rest

Volunteer workers are more than just free labour

Supporting volunteers means organisations increasing talent and boosting morale, says Volunteering England The Crown Centre is a lifeline for vulnerable people in the deprived area of Stonehouse, Plymouth. As well as managing the Plymouth Foodbank project, ensuring those in crisis do not go hungry, the scheme runs a cafe, lunch club, job club and coffee mornings. But like many grassroots charities, it has scant resources and only four paid staff; it is only able to support those in need thanks to its 47-strong band of regular volunteers who cook, do administrative work and support centre users. Earlier this month, the centre won an Investing in Volunteers award from volunteering support Read the Rest

Voluntary sector responds to Philanthropy Review

Thomas Hughes-Hallet’s review has received a warm welcome from voluntary sector bodies The Philanthropy Review, chaired by Marie Curie Cancer Care chief executive Thomas Hughes-Hallett, has issued a “call-to-action” to increase charitable donations by £2bn by 2015. The review proposes a number of measures to increase charitable giving, including: • Banks and building societies to offer charity bank accounts to their customers • Simpler tax incentives for charitable donations • An increase in the amount of cash on which Gift Aid can be claimed from £5,000 to £50,000 • Asking businesses to adopt payroll giving •The introduction of living legacies Hughes-Hallett said: “We are particularly keen to see more being Read the Rest

Poll: Does company structure matter to you?

Is your company structure a red herring? Or is it essential to your social enterprise’s success? David Mills