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Charity Times by ProGroup

Here is your weekly round-up of the latest news and issues affecting the charities and the wider Not-for-Profit sector.

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Tuesday, 13th August 2019




Funding call to help charities prepare for no-deal Brexit

NCVO chief executive Sir Stuart Etherington has written to new civil society minister Baroness Barran and urged her to ensure that charities are not overlooked when no-deal Brexit preparation funding is distributed. “A funding package should . . . be set up specifically for charities that can help support communities with a range of needs in the event of a no-deal EU exit. This should provide grants that are easily accessible and require minimum administration, in order to ensure a swift distribution that can support the services that they will need to provide,” Sir Stuart wrote. His letter also called for the establishment of a “resilient communities fund” for local charities. Meanwhile, writing in The Guardian, David Brindle says Lady Barran has "a tough job to ensure charities don’t fall off a cliff" in the post-Brexit era. He notes that charities are increasingly anxious about the loss of European Union funding after Brexit and a lack of plans from government to replace it.

Civil Sector Third Sector Charity Update The Guardian





Families allowed to make tax decisions for incapacitated relatives

A judge has ruled that a family may make tax exempt gifts on behalf of a wealthy relative who has been in a coma for several years. District judge Sarah Ellington ruled in the Court of Protection that millions of pounds of gifts to family, charities and political organisations, which would reduce tax payable on death, were in the best interests of the man, who is in a persistent vegetative state. Lynne Rowland, a private client tax partner at Kingston Smith, called the ruling "ground-breaking," saying it sets a precedent for carers to cut tax bills, and has “huge implications for inheritance tax."

The Daily Telegraph





Share of charities not complying with suppression requests down 37%

The Fundraising Regulator says the number of charities failing to act on Fundraising Preference Service (FPS) requests has fallen by 37% since March. Thirty-seven charities have transgressed the right afforded by the Data Protection Act 2018 and reflected in the Code of Fundraising Practice that anyone can object to marketing using personal data. Twenty-four charities have acted on the suppression requests since their failure to do so was published in March. Charities are required to access the FPS within 21 days after a suppression request from a member of the public. A spokesperson for the regulator said: “The number of charities accessing their FPS requests has risen steadily. There are several reasons for this, including the decision to name charities not acting on their requests as well as greater awareness of FPS and charities’ obligations under data protection law and the Code of Fundraising Practice." The spokesperson added: “The numbers will always be relative to the number of people using the service, and a spike in demand may mean the list of charities grows.”

Third Sector Civil Society





Livestream gaming is an opportunity for charities

Livestreaming gaming platform Twitch is a great opportunity for charity fundraising, writes Chrissy Chiu for Charity Digital News. Twitch, which has more than 15m daily users, allows people to watch live video gaming and chat with other fans. More than $30m has to date been raised for charities on the platform by making use of popular games and the advocacy of gaming champions. Jeremy Wells, fundraising events manager at Médecins Sans Frontières, an experienced partner for charity livestream fundraising, says: “The impact is big and getting bigger. Summer Games Done Quick is our biggest fundraiser of the year – it brought in $2.1m last year out of $4.7m for our whole events program.”

Charity Digital News


Royal couple choose 15 charities to follow on Instagram

The Duke and Duchess of Sussex have chosen 15 charities and NGOs to follow on Instagram. The charities chosen by the royal couple for their Instagram account are: BeesCause, Pawsitive Change, Children International, BlinkNow Foundation, Love the Oceans, Art of Hope, Tiny Tickers, Global Wellness Day, Beyond Blue, Lion Guardians, Earth Day Network, Plan International UK, Free Wheelchair Mission, Waves For Change, and Rafiki Mwema. Simon Bishop, Plan International UK’s deputy chief executive, said: “We are delighted to be among their Forces for Change. We know the girls we work with want to see this kind of high-profile support for achieving gender equality, and we hope the Sussexes will continue to be champions for change.”

Civil Society Daily Mail


Concern about lack of 1p and 2p coin production

Shadow charities minister Vicky Foxcroft says she is concerned about the potential impact on donations of a halt in production of new 1p and 2p coins in the UK. No such coins were manufactured in the year to March 2019. Civil Society notes that this is the first time this has occurred in decades. Foxcroft said: "Donating loose change remains one of the easiest and most popular ways for people to donate to charities . . . These small, one-off donations add up for charities and ditching small coins will have a damaging knock on effect on small charities, and the causes they support.” A Treasury spokesperson said the halt in production does not signify a phasing out of the coins.

Civil Society





Survey will record BAME workers' experiences of racism

A survey to record Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic (BAME) charity workers' experiences of racism in the sector has been launched by ACEVO and Voice4Change England. Dr Sanjiv Lingayah, research lead on the 'Making Diversity Count' project, said: “[The survey] is an effort to centre the diversity debate around BAME voices and experiences . . . [it] is a response to an evident lack of a focus on race equality, diversity and inclusion in the charity sector.” A report will be published in spring 2020.

Civil Society





Charities Trust is now in the cloud

Donations management charity The Charities Trust has revamped its operations and customer service technology by adopting the cloud-based Appian Platform to improve its fund management systems. Lee Blackburn, Chief Technology Officer at Charities Trust, said: “Appian allows us the flexibility to remain unique in our business offerings, and the power to personalise our service for our clients and donors.”

Charity Digital News





Auditors must help charities manage risk

Charity auditors are well placed to help organisations in the sector manage risks, and not just financially but also around governance, safeguarding and regulation, writes Steve Harper, charities director at tax adviser Haysmacintyre.

Accountancy Daily





Premier League clubs criticised for living wage failures

Citizens UK has criticised several Premier League clubs for not paying their staff the living wage, despite spending some £ 1.41bn on player transfers this summer. Only four clubs - Liverpool, Everton, West Ham and Chelsea - pay their staff the living wage of £9 per hour UK-wide and £10.55 per hour in London, according to the Living Wage Foundation. The charity said that many cleaners, kiosk and ticketing staff and caterers to VIP boxes can earn as low as £7.50 an hour. A spokesperson for Citizens UK said: "Premier League clubs are huge profit-making global brands, but football clubs are supposed to be all about community. It can't be right that their pay policies leave workers struggling to stay afloat financially."

The Independent


BBC partners with charities for debt advice map

The BBC has launched an interactive map with details of almost 500 charity partners who can provide financial advice to people struggling to pay their television licence. Dennis Hussey, money adviser at National Debtline, said: “Many callers are often afraid or embarrassed to discuss debts with even their family or close friends – I am often the very first person they’ve confided in.”

Civil Society


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