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NCVO announces Tumim Prize finalists

Four charities from across the country have been shortlisted for a national quality award. The Winifred Tumim Memorial Prize, awarded annually by the National Council for Voluntary Organisations (NCVO), rewards charities which have demonstrated an exceptionally high standard of governance.

The four finalists are The Spring Arts and Heritage Centre, based in Hampshire; Keech Hospice Care, Luton; Walsingham, a national disability charity; and Cumbria Action for Sustainability.

The shortlisted charities have all used NCVO’s Good Governance Tool to strengthen their board of trustees and deliver greater public benefit, including by filling skills gaps, improving understanding between staff and trustees, and increasing transparency.

The Spring Arts and Heritage Centre used the Good Governance Code to develop a new business plan, and has since created a new strand of outreach work, which engaged 8000 people in the arts in 2013/14. Roger Harrison, chair of the board of trustees, said:

‘To be nominated for this award demonstrates to the communities we serve and to our supporters that we deserve their trust and we are on the right track. Best of all, it says to us: "Well done but keep going!"’

Keech Hospice Care, which delivers palliative care to children and adults across Bedfordshire and Hertfordshire, used the Code to create a governance manual and ensure good communication across the organisation. Mike Keel, Chief Executive, said:

‘The NCVO Code of Governance and accompanying toolkit provides a perfect template and resource, which the trustee board at Keech Hospice Care has used to improve itself and become more effective. We are delighted to have reached the final stages of the Winifred Tumin Memorial Prize and see this as recognition of the hard work and forward thinking people who lead Keech Hospice Care.’

Walsingham supports people with disabilities to lead fulfilled lives by providing care for vulnerable individuals. The board used the Code to agree priorities and future direction for the charity, and feel that the profile of the charity has been raised. Paul Snell, Chief Executive, said:

‘The past year has seen our Board of Trustees go through considerable changes in our pursuit to attain best practice in charity governance. The Good Governance Code provided us with a clear framework to improve how our Board of Trustees governs Walsingham and identify areas for future development.’

Cumbria Action for Sustainability (CAfS) promotes low carbon living and energy saving throughout Cumbria. After receiving a grant for a three year programme, the charity used the Good Governance Code to clarify roles and dramatically widen their audience and reach. Hazel Graham, Charity Manager at CAfS, said:

‘We used the Good Governance Code to stay true to our aims during this period of growth, to honestly assess our strengths and weaknesses and to develop a clear range of projects. We are proud of everything we have achieved and it is fantastic to have our strengths and successes recognized in this way!’

The results will be announced at NCVO’s Trustee Conference on 10 November. The winning charity will be awarded £1000, plus free NCVO membership for a year and an invitation to participate in a Charity Commission podcast on good governance.

Sir Stuart Etherington, Chief Executive of NCVO:

‘It’s fantastic to see that charities and trustees are investing in good governance and making an even bigger difference. The standard of entries for the Winifred Tumim Prize this year was, as ever, extremely high, so it’s quite an achievement to be shortlisted.’



  1. The Winifred Tumim Memorial Prize was established by NCVO in honour of the work done by Lady Winifred Tumim, chair of NCVO from 1996-2001, to improve the quality of charity governance. Lady Tumim was instrumental in the formation of the 2006 Charities Act and, as chair of the Royal National Institute for the Deaf, helped to clarify the duties and liabilities of trustees.
  2. For more information please contact Helen Raftery, External Relations, NCVO, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. /020 7520 2424.
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