ACO day of action will highlight members’ work
The Association of Charitable Organisations (ACO) has announced a national day of action on October 16th to highlight the support its member charities provide to thousands of people. The One Day Changes Lives campaign will highlight the work done by member charities including Macmillan Cancer Support, Retail Trust, and Vetlife. ACO chief executive Dominic Fox said: “It is important that we highlight the organisations providing ongoing support for its beneficiaries and the help they can give to people who really need it . . . We hope this day will highlight how sometimes small acts of kindness can make a big difference to people’s lives and also encourage people who may need support to get in touch and see how our charity members can help them.”
Oxfam simplifies digital fundraising approach
Oxfam is simplifying its digital fundraising approach as the charity seeks to combat a decline in fundraising income. Nicola Tallett, Oxfam’s director of engagement, said of a strategy to make fundraising efforts more audience-friendly: "Supporters were being put off by the complexity of the Oxfam offer, sometimes receiving mixed messages and communications about campaigns, shopping and giving . . . So we changed our strategy to become audience-centric, to ensure that it made sense from a supporter’s perspective. This has resulted in greater engagement, especially with digital.” The Oxfam App, the launched of Oxfam's own lottery and its engagement with the People’s Postcode Lottery, and the Oxfam Online Shop all signal the new strategy, Tallett said.
More than £100m raised from dormant accounts in 2018
The Reclaim Fund's annual report and accounts for 2018 show that over £100m was raised from dormant accounts in the year and, as of the beginning of January, £620m was potentially available to distribute to good causes. The organisation collects money from bank accounts that have been inactive for more than 15 years. Meanwhile, Legacy Foresight reports that legacy income increased by 1.8% in the year up to March 2019 - although growth has slowed year-on-year since 2013.
Scottish charities report more than 300 serious incidents
Charities in Scotland have reported over 300 serious incidents to the Scottish Charity Regulator (OSCR) in the three years since a system of self-reporting was introduced. Jude Turbyne, the regulator's head of engagement, said the figures were indicative of awareness of the system increasing among charities. "The regime is still fairly new, and it is still developing. We are pleased with the progress we are making," she said. ButThird Force News notes the figures have led to debate about whether organisations should be required by law to report concerns. Alastair Keatinge, head of charities at Lindsays solicitors, says charities should be under legal obligation to report notifiable events. "The current set-up leaves the door open for trustees, who are perhaps embarrassed or worried about the reputational damage to their organisation, to try to keep the issue in-house," he said.
CFG warns on no-deal Brexit
The chief executive of the Charity Finance Group (CFG) has told attendees at the organisation’s annual conference that a no-deal Brexit would be ruinous for the sector. Caron Bradshaw said that the only aspect of Brexit that the CFG had taken a position on "is that a WTO or a no-deal Brexit would be catastrophic for the sector." She observed that the areas that had voted most heavily for Brexit in 2016 were those which had a “gap for charitable support”. She said: “What that says to me is there is huge need being unmet and we need to find out where those places are and take our services into those places.”
360Giving announces a new strategy to improve data use
Online grant tracking platform 360Giving has launched a strategy which aims to improve the use of data amongst charities. It includes the development of resources such as free technical advice, workshops and peer networks in a bid to encourage open data sharing, improve data quality, increase data use and data literacy, and help shared learning. “For charitable giving to strategically address society’s problems we need to build on [recent] momentum. That’s why we are applying the learning and infrastructure we have developed over the past three years to enable more grantmakers to use the data in their day to day work, and for others to demonstrate its relevance,” said Fran Perrin, founder and chair of 360Giving.
Charities told to set 'clear targets' on diversity
A panel discussion on diversity in the sector has heard a call for the setting of "clear targets" and accountability to accelerate progress. The audience for the discussion at the Charity Finance Group’s annual conference heard Cordelia Osewa-Ediae, senior consultant at Green Park, say: “Umbrella organisations like the NCVO need to step up and actually be the guardians going forward.” She also noted the importance of inclusion to ethnic minority charity staff - who would leave if they did not feel “part of the organisation.”
Charity unveils new logo to mark 175 years
YMCA Scotland has rebranded to mark its 175th anniversary this year. As part of the rebranding process, the charity engaged with young people and staff using focus groups to shape the new brand. YMCA Scotland chief executive Kerry Reilly said of the thinking behind the charity's new logo: “One of the challenges we faced was that our brand was very fragmented across the country. Local YMCAs used widely different logos and colours. This often made them look like small local charities when they are, in fact, part of a national and international movement.”
PE losing out on curriculum time
Curriculum time devoted to physical education has been cut more than almost any subject, according to new analysis. The government’s school workforce data shows that there were 282,200 hours of PE taught in 2017 – the most recent year for which figures are available – down from 333,800 hours in 2010, meaning that 51,600 hours of PE have been lost in just seven years. According to the Youth Sport Trust, the only subject which has had its curriculum time cut more since 2012 is ICT and the charity is calling for more time in the curriculum for PE in every school.
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Scottish schools get new sex education guidance
Charities have welcomed the publication of new guidelines to help teachers in Scotland talk "confidently and sensitively" to young people about relationships and consent. Described as the country’s first national guidance on issues such as consent, it has been drawn up to help teachers, youth workers and other professionals who might have to speak to children aged 11 and upwards about relationships. Cara Spence, chief executive of LGBT Youth Scotland, said " it's great to see that the messages are inclusive of all sexual orientations and gender identities.” Kathryn Dawson, sexual violence prevention coordinator at Rape Crisis Scotland, said that "Young people are ready to talk and it's so important to provide safe spaces for them to learn about consensual and healthy relationships.”
Co-op donates to anti-knife campaign
Co-op has pledged a multi-million-pound investment to anti-knife crime charity Steel Warriors. The charity melts down knives taken off the streets and turns them into outdoor gym equipment. Co-op chief executive Steve Murrells said: “This will give access to free outdoor fitness equipment to those youngsters who can't afford gyms with costly fees. It's what we should do as a responsible retailer.”