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The Cabinet Office and Directory of Social Change (DSC) today announced plans for the future of the Government Funding Portal, governmentfunding.org.uk.
From the 1 April 2008 organisations with a turnover in excess of £500k will be required to pay a subscription of £75 to access governmentfunding.org.uk. Support from the Cabinet Office will enable organisations below the threshold to access the site for free.
Cabinet Office will be commissioning a new and additional service over the coming year to meet their specific needs and objectives as outlined in the Third Sector Review.
Campbell Robb, Director General of the Office of the Third Sector, said:
“We are really pleased that this service will remain free for small and medium sized third sector organisations. We are committed to providing a facility which offers the best and most comprehensive service possible, while ensuring good value and accountability for the taxpayer. The tender will offer a fantastic opportunity for an organisation to manage this important service that continues to enhance the third sector’s ability to transform people’s lives with the help of government funding.
“The initial grant funding of the portal was an investment in developing a service that is responsive to its users needs. I thank DSC for building a solid foundation that has helped many in the third sector get the funding they need.”
Ben Wittenberg, Director of Policy & Research at DSC said:
“I appreciate the irony at a superficial level of us having our government funding cut however this is a joint decision between ourselves and the Office of the Third Sector. We have delivered everything possible under the existing agreement and feel that this is the best way to enable us to meet the changing needs of the sector.
“This represents a really positive outcome for our subscribers. The objectives were agreed with the Home Office four years ago and have now changed, but the critical need as far as the sector is concerned has not changed – accessible information on government funding. This agreement means that we can be more flexible about the information we provide, and ensure that the smallest organisations are still able to access that information for free.”
Existing subscribers will be asked over the next few weeks to visit the site and declare their turnover in their user profiles in order that free access for organisations below the threshold can be ensured.
Notes to Editors
1. The Government funding portal is at: www.governmentfunding.org.uk
2. The Directory of Social Change (DSC) is an independent charity which campaigns for an independent voluntary sector. As well as publishing its well respected reference guides and handbooks, it provides practical training courses, and runs conferences on fundraising, management, personnel, campaigning, volunteering and many other topics, engaging with over 35,000 voluntary sector organisations each year. For further information please see: http://www.dsc.org.uk/
3. The Office of the Third Sector in the Cabinet Office leads on the Governments commitment to create the conditions for a thriving third sector. For further information see: http://www.cabinetoffice.gov.uk/third_sector.aspx
4. DSC’s original funding to develop the Portal came from the Active Community Unit of the Home Office in 2003.
5. Responsibility for the funding relationship passed to the Office of the Third Sector in 2006.