Fundraising, Management & leadership, Government and the Voluntary Sector

DSC policy update - week commencing 7 December 2020

DSC Researcher, Rebecca Eddington, rounds up the policy news from around the sector.

It’s nearly Christmas, yay! So, my tip for the week – if you’re coping with pre-crimbo deadlines, just visualise the mountain of chocolate, wine and festive movies that await you and feel all that stress drop away! (If this doesn’t work just consume all the chocolate and wine now, but don’t hold me accountable for any outcomes!)

Here’s this week’s round up of news:

Open letter sent to PM from MP’s regarding Community Wealth Fund

An open letter has been addressed to the Prime Minister from a group of over 40 cross-party MP’s backing the creation of a Community Wealth Fund to invest in ‘left behind’ neighbourhoods. The group is asking the government to commit funds of £2 billion from the next wave of dormant assets to help rebuild communities which have been hardest hit by the loss of local infrastructure and give them more control over funding. This follows the publication of Danny Kruger’s report (which Jay wrote about here, if you need a refresh) and the announcement of £4 billion ‘Levelling Up Fund’ in last week’s Spending Review. The creation of a Community Wealth Fund is aligned with ideas that the #NeverMoreNeeded campaign has been calling for since the start of the pandemic.

The New Charity Governance Code

The new Charity Governance Code was published today after a consultation was launched in February this year. Two of the seven principles, the Equality, Diversity and Inclusion Principle and the Integrity Principle, have been refined over the last few months. An overview of the changes is explained in this Civil Society article.

Barnardo’s receive further backlash for ‘white privilege’ piece

After Barnardo’s published a blogpost about white privilege a couple of weeks ago, they received backlash from both the public and a group of Tory MP’s, who wrote a letter to the charity expressing their disappointment about the piece. The Guardian have reported the vice-president’s reaction to the letter saying the charity was “as committed as ever to representing and advocating for all vulnerable children” but could not be “colour blind”. In response to the criticism that Barnardo’s has received and the racism that the Barnardo’s CEO Javed Kahn has faced recently, 226 Civil Society leaders have signed a letter headed by ACEVO to stand together against racism.

New civil action report published

Pro Bono Economics published a paper last week, called Civil Action, which marked the start of its ‘Law Family Commission on Civil Society’ a two-year initiative that aims to examine how the potential of civil society can be unleashed in the UK. The Civil Action report concluded that the voluntary sector was undervalued by official figures by an estimated £160 billion! The culture secretary, Oliver Dowden, spoke at the launch of the commission about how to tackle the sector’s “digital deficit”, how to build up his department’s knowledge of civil society, and unlock more resources.

Results from public poll regarding opinion surround the pandemic and charities released

nfpSynergy have been carrying out a series of polls to understand public opinion around the pandemic and charity responses. They have reported on the key findings, which are worth a quick read. They include: ‘Satisfaction with the government response to the pandemic is at a low since we started tracking’ (unsurprising!); ‘Belief that the government is doing enough to support charities is extremely low’; and ‘Charity visibility is low with nearly 60% unable to name a charity responding to the pandemic more than seven months in’.

Charities and Culture Wars by Andrew Purkis

And last but not least, if you missed Andrew Purkis’s blog ‘Charities and Culture Wars’ give it a read! Our trustee explains why it is necessary for charities to engage in culture wars to do their job, following a comment from Baroness Stowell saying that to help those in need ‘you need to leave party politics and the culture wars out of it’.

I thought this was lovely too – a week on from #GivingTuesday the UK Team have rounded up a few social media successes while they wait to see exactly how much was raised.