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Volunteering

  • Big charities continue to grow as smaller charities struggle

    Young people’s volunteering levels show sharp increase

    The income of Britain’s biggest charities grew in 2013/14, while that of smaller and medium-sized charities’ decreased in real terms, new analysis shows, continuing a long-term trend.

  • Campaigning, volunteering and public trust among NCVO’s priorities in new five-year strategy

    Defending the rights of voluntary organisations to campaign and safeguarding public trust and confidence in charities are among the priorities outlined in NCVO’s new strategic plan, launched today.

    The five-year strategy follows a consultation with NCVO members last year, and will take NCVO to its centenary year, 2019.

  • Charities and volunteering are at the heart of our shared society

    Sir Stuart Etherington, chief executive of NCVO, said:

    I was very pleased to hear the prime minister’s speech today. She is entirely correct that the state alone cannot solve problems, and that different types of organisations share the responsibility for improving our society, but also that between us we have the skills to make it happen.

  • 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.

  • Free NCVO membership extended as merger with Volunteering England is confirmed

    The merger between NCVO and Volunteering England was finalised today, with the organisations set to formally come together on 1 January 2013.

  • Good practice in volunteer management

    What does good volunteer management look like and how do you put this into practice? Good practice in volunteer management is key to unlocking the potential of volunteering in your organisation. Based on NCVO’s UK wide quality standard, Investing in Volunteers, this course provides an introduction to the key principles of good practice in volunteer management and how to apply them to your organisation.

    Date 1 December 2017
    Time 09.30 - 16.30
    Location NCVO Conference Suite, London
  • Justin Davis Smith announced as NCVO executive director for volunteering

    Volunteering England chief executive, Justin Davis Smith, will lead NCVO’s new volunteering directorate under the organisation's merger proposals, NCVO announced today.

  • Micro-volunteering on the rise – new research

    More organisations are creating and advertising ‘micro-volunteering’ opportunities, according to new research from NCVO published today.

    Demand for such volunteering opportunities, often tasks that can be completed online or on smartphones, is also likely to grow, the research concludes, as it provides a more accessible form of volunteering which is increasingly sought after. Growth will also be driven by technological development.

  • 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.

  • National programme enables support to local VIOs

    A national programme enables Volunteer Centre Camden (VCC) to try out an innovative way of supporting resource strapped volunteer involving organisations and at the same time, helps increase the employability of individual volunteers.

  • National week of celebration to thank the UK’s volunteers

    Organisations across the country are holding events to thank volunteers for their dedication and contribution. Volunteers’ Week is an annual celebration of the millions of volunteers who give up their time in the service of others. Events are taking place across the UK from 1–12 June to mark Volunteers’ Week, which this year is running for an extra five days to coincide with the Patron’s Lunch on 12 June.

  • NCVO and Volunteering England merger talks

    Volunteering England and the National Council for Voluntary Organisations are commencing formal discussions with a view to merging.

  • NCVO annual conference to be replaced with new ‘super conference’ following Volunteering England merger

    A new charity ‘super conference’ will replace its annual conference this summer, NCVO announced today.

  • NCVO chair Martyn Lewis dedicates knighthood to voluntary sector

    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.

  • 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 LGA council tax discount for volunteers proposal

    Commenting on the LGA proposal for council tax discounts for volunteers, Justin Davis Smith, executive director for volunteering and development at the National Council for Voluntary Organisations, which represents charities in England, said:

    ‘We very much welcome any ideas for promoting volunteering, but this proposal raises both practical problems and questions of principle.

  • NCVO comment on the Chancellor’s Autumn Statement

    Charlotte Ravenscroft, head of policy and research at the National Council for Voluntary Organisations, said:

    ‘Many charities fear the new welfare cap will drive the government to make spending decisions that will lead to vulnerable people bearing the brunt of further cuts. Further details announced today do not resolve our concerns. We have called for a proper consultation on these proposals and also for any cap to have consultation mechanisms built into it.

  • NCVO comment on the National Citizen Service: Volunteering must not be compulsory

    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.'

  • NCVO reminds charities of the importance of historical archives

    The National Council for Voluntary Organisations (NCVO) is calling for charities to protect their historical records, as part of a new project to archive charity sector documents.

    The five-year scheme, funded by the British Academy, will reach across the UK and seeks to digitally preserve key voluntary sector records, particularly those dating back to the creation of the modern welfare state in 1945. It aims to ensure that records relating to welfare reform, which transformed the relationship between charities and the state, are not lost.

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