Press releases

Commenting on the Public Administration and Constitutional Affairs Committee report into Kids Company, Sir Stuart Etherington, chief executive of NCVO, said:

I’m pleased the committee recognise that Kids Company was an aberration among charities, and that its poor practices should not tarnish charities as a whole.

Commenting on the Public Administration and Constitutional Affairs Committee report, 'The 2015 charity fundraising controversy: lessons for trustees, the Charity Commission, and regulators', Sir Stuart Etherington, chief executive of NCVO, and chair of the review of fundraising self-regulation, said:

I am pleased the committee have backed the proposals we made in the review of fundraising self-regulation. I believe they are a proportionate and effective way to give the public confidence that charities are taking their responsibility to operate to high standards seriously.

The National Council for Voluntary Organisations (NCVO) and PhotoVoice, a charity promoting the ethical use of photography for positive change, are inviting entries to their annual charity photo competition. Now in its sixth year, the competition is open to all staff, volunteers, and beneficiaries of NCVO members.

With a theme of connections, entries to the competition should depict a form of connection that charities make – from connections between people, to a cause, or to an activity. The competition will be open until 18 March.

Research carried out by the National Council for Voluntary Organisations (NCVO) has found that voluntary organisations such as cancer charities, homeless shelters and advice services have experienced greater demand for their services as a result of welfare reforms.

The report reflects on the experiences of voluntary organisations and the extent to which the government’s objectives of simplifying the benefits system, protecting the most vulnerable and incentivising work are being met.

Martyn Lewis, NCVO’s chair of trustees, has been awarded a knighthood for services to the voluntary sector, particularly the hospice movement, in the 2016 new year's honours.

Martyn Lewis, chair of NCVO, said:

NCVO’s board believe the fundraising self-regulation review is an important step forward for the sector and are keen to see its recommendations put into practice. To that end, we have asked NCVO staff to provide secretariat support to the fundraising preference service working group.

Commenting for today’s Times story, Martyn Lewis, chair of NCVO, said:

Britain’s best-loved charities are serious, professional organisations responsible for raising and prudently spending hundreds of millions a year on their good work. For an average household name charity, less than one per cent of its spending goes on senior staff pay, which is a sensible amount in order to ensure the charity is well-run and effective. Their executive salaries are typically much smaller than for comparable roles in other sectors.

Following a call in today's Telegraph to make the National Citizen Service compulsory for 16-year-olds, NCVO's executive director of volunteering and development, Justin Davis Smith, commented:

'The National Citizen Service has the potential to make a significant positive contribution to young people's lives, and NCVO has broadly welcomed plans to expand it over the next few years.

'However, we are concerned about the impact compulsion could have on young people's attitudes towards volunteering and what this might mean for their engagement in the longer term. The programme is increasingly being positioned as a staging post on a journey of social engagement for young people; it would be short-sighted to assume that making it compulsory would be an improvement and it could mean that young people miss out on the unique experience of volunteering and the benefits it can bring. Volunteering by its very nature has to be undertaken freely and any attempt to compel people to take part would fundamentally undermine this core principle. Rather than mandating people to take part we should be working to make the programme even more appealing, and to help young people design and develop a range of high-quality volunteering opportunities which will set them up for a lifetime of social action.

'Finally, the claim that charities would be 'unpatriotic' for not taking part in a compulsory scheme is nonsense. Charities are not political organisations; they have the right to defend the fundamental principle of volunteering without being accused of ulterior motives.'

Sir Stuart Etherington, chief executive of NCVO:

We know that charities deliver effective and efficient public services. Even though public service spending cuts are less than expected, if current trends continue, cuts to voluntary sector delivery will be deeper than cuts overall. It's time for a major review of how public service markets work so that the expertise and skills of charities can be better used to benefit the public.

65% of workers would choose employers that support volunteering, but businesses and charities aren’t working together

The National Council for Voluntary Organisations (NCVO) and the CIPD, the professional body for HR and people development, have today launched new research into employer-supported volunteering (ESV). The research found a lack of understanding between charities and companies about the costs and benefits involved in ESV, with some companies unwilling to contribute to the costs involved in hosting volunteers. Similarly, some of the businesses interviewed reported that charities often overlooked the additional benefits of a one-off placement, including the potential of sponsorship or support from the company in the future.

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