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Cross Sector Working

  • Charities should be central to NHS decision-making and delivery, says new government-backed report

    Charities and social enterprises should be deeply involved at every level of the health and care system, according to a new report backed by Alistair Burt, Simon Stevens and Duncan Selbie.

  • Charity body launches UK’s first not-for-profit public affairs consultancy service

    Charity representative body the National Council for Voluntary Organisations (NCVO) has today launched the UK’s first not-for-profit public affairs consultancy service. Aimed at charities, the service will help organisations get a foothold in Westminster and Whitehall and help decision-makers better understand the needs of the people they support.

  • Conservative party manifesto – NCVO comment

    Commenting on the Conservative Party manifesto, Ruth Driscoll, head of policy and public services at NCVO, said:

    'It is positive that the manifesto reflects a continuing commitment to the principles of voluntarism and putting power in the hands of communities. Nevertheless, under the past government this desire has been hampered by public spending settlements which have been very challenging for many charities.

  • Conservative Party volunteering proposal – NCVO comment

    Commenting on David Cameron’s announcement, Sir Stuart Etherington, chief executive of NCVO, said:

    'This is an exciting proposal which would be good news for charities and for businesses.

    'Many charities urgently need more volunteers to support their work, while volunteering is an excellent way for employees to develop skills and confidence that will benefit their employers.

    'Anything that helps encourage our culture of volunteering is very welcome. We look forward to seeing the detail of the proposal.'

    Volunteering and employers – quick facts

    • An estimated 15 million people in the UK volunteer at least once a month (1).
    • In the last survey to examine the topic, 'work commitments' were the main reason given by people for not volunteering. (2)
    • Employer-supported volunteering, schemes where employers arrange volunteering opportunities for staff, have grown substantially in popularity in recent years. Employers benefit from staff developing skills and experience, and staff whose job satisfaction and connection with their communities increases. Around 1 in 12 employees took part in such a scheme in 2013/14, compared to fewer than 1 in 20 in 2008/9. (3)

    Read our analysis on volunteering and public policy: the big topics - the NHS, unemployment, localism, and austerity - where volunteers make a difference

    NCVO champions the voluntary sector and volunteering. We connect, represent and support voluntary organisations.

  • DWP seeks 200 charity job swaps to increase understanding of voluntary sector

    Nine government departments, including the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP), will be involved in a work shadowing programme giving one thousand civil servants the chance to spend a day in the life of a charity employee. The DWP has doubled the number of places it is offering from 100 to 200 after the popularity of last year’s scheme, with demand particularly high among front-line staff in Jobcentre Plus branches.

  • Labour party manifesto – NCVO comment

    Commenting on the Labour party general election manifesto published today, Nick Davies, public services manager at NCVO, said:

    'We're very pleased to see support for public service providers paying the Living Wage. In our manifesto we said organisations delivering public services ought to be able to pay their staff the Living Wage.

  • Minister for Civil Society move to DCMS

    Commenting on the transfer of the role of minister for civil society from the Cabinet Office to the Department for Culture, Media and Sport, Sir Stuart Etherington, chief executive of NCVO, which represents charities and volunteering, said:

    We have always championed charities and the remarkable things they do for our society to every part of government. Charitable giving, volunteering and social action are part of the social and cultural heritage of Britain. Charities contribute to economic growth and run high quality, user-oriented public services. They can play an important role in delivering the ambitious social justice programme that Theresa May set out in her first speech as prime minister.

  • NAO follow-up report on the Charity Commission: NCVO response

    Commenting on the NAO’s follow-up report into the Charity Commission, Sir Stuart Etherington, chief executive of NCVO, said:

    ‘This review reflects significant progress for which the Commission and its staff deserve much credit. The NAO identify a number of outstanding areas of concern. We are particularly keen to see the Commission return to a more conventional division between governance and executive. We look forward to seeing the results of the governance audit being carried out in the coming months.

  • NAO report on the Work Programme - NCVO comment

    Oliver Henman, head of partnerships and international at NCVO, said:

    ‘The Work Programme isn’t working well for anyone. Prime contractors have had their income hit because referrals to the programme have been lower than expected. They have squeezed their subcontractors, many of which are specialist voluntary organisations, whose income is now a quarter lower than expected.

  • National Citizen Service should work more closely with local charities, says NCVO

    The National Council for Voluntary Organisations (NCVO), which represents charities and volunteering, has welcomed the government's announcement that the National Citizen Service (NCS) will be given a royal charter along with measures to enhance its accountability. NCS has provided positive experiences for many young people and helped them develop important skills.

    However, NCVO said that NCS could still do more to work with local charities to ensure it reaches its potential as a starting point for life-long volunteering.

  • NCVO comment on CLG Committee local procurement report

    ​Communities and Local Government Committee report calling on all councils to let contracts on the basis of wider social value rather than lowest price is a timely nudge, the National Council for Voluntary Organisations says.

  • NCVO comment on Help to Work launch

    Justin Davis Smith, executive director of volunteering and development, said:

    'Volunteering has the potential to transform people's employment prospects – but clearly it must be freely entered into. NCVO sought and received assurances from DWP last year that mandated Community Work Placements, and any other sanctions-backed placements, will not be conflated with volunteering. Nevertheless, we have suggested that charities consider carefully whether to be involved.

  • NCVO comment on NAO report on government grants

    Responding to the NAO report on government grants published today, the National Council for Voluntary Organisations noted that:

    • Grants to charities are a tiny proportion of the total grant funding the NAO report examines. The NAO report covers £292bn of government grants, of which £61bn goes to recipients outside the public sector. NCVO’s analysis shows UK charities received £2.56bn in government grant income in 2011/12.
    • There are clear advantages to grant funding – grants to voluntary organisations are a simple and efficient way for government to meet its objectives - avoiding the bureaucracy and costs of contracting
    • Grants from government are a rapidly declining part of the funding mix for charities – with contracts to deliver services now significantly more common than grants.
  • NCVO statement on independence referendum

    Commenting on the Scottish independence referendum result, Sir Stuart Etherington, chief executive of NCVO, said:

    ‘Despite the no vote, we can expect to see the political settlement in the UK shift at a rapid pace. As greater devolution takes shape in Scotland, the demand for devolution throughout England will inevitably pick up. This is likely to affect how any number of state services are run and governed. We have seen change in this area recently, such as the introduction of clinical commissioning groups and police and crime commissioners. Charities will need to be prepared to work with more and more different and new structures in order to represent the causes they work for.’ 

  • NCVO statement on probation reforms

    Commenting on today’s announcement by the Ministry of Justice on the providers of rehabilitation services across England and Wales, Sir Stuart Etherington said:

    “Specialist charities, many involving dedicated volunteers, can make all the difference to the lives of people leaving prison and help reduce reoffending. It’s pleasing to see that after consulting widely with the voluntary sector the Government has taken on board some of the lessons of the Work Programme – particularly in terms of programme structure and supply chain management.

  • NCVO: NAO report echoes charities' concerns on payment by results

    Commenting on the National Audit Office report on the government's use of payment-by-results schemes, Karl Wilding, policy director at the National Council for Voluntary Organisations, which represents charities, said:

    'Our own research found charities thought payment-by-results contracts were often being used because they were political 'flavour of the month' rather than because they were appropriate for the service being delivered.

  • NCVO: Next Work Programme must involve charities in design to succeed

    The poor performance of the Work Programme in getting harder-to-help jobseekers into work demonstrates there is a need for the government to work more closely with charities and service users when designing contracts, says a new report by the National Council for Voluntary Organisations (NCVO).

  • NCVO: Opening up public services to smaller charities will lead to better outcomes

    Commenting on today's announcement by the minister for civil society of a package of measures to help tackle the challenge of getting small charities into the public services supply chain, Sir Stuart Etherington, chief executive of the National Council for Voluntary Organisations, said:

    Opening up public services commissioning to smaller charities will lead to better outcomes for the people who depend on them. The expertise of charities helps create caring, responsive and efficient public services.

  • New report – Local commissioners should work more with arts and cultural organisations to solve social problems, but a bold new approach is needed

    Local government and local health commissioners are under growing pressure to solve social problems. Arts and culture organisations can play a much more central role in helping to address these problems, according to a new report published today. The NPC-authored report, produced as part of the Cultural Commissioning Programme, argues that commissioners and cultural organisations alike must be bold in seizing this opportunity.

  • New volunteering scheme will help anchor care homes in their communities

    A new programme to promote volunteering in care homes has launched this month with volunteers being recruited to support older people in both residential and nursing care homes in five Clinical Commissioning Group areas across England.

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