NCVO and the Association of Chief Executives of Voluntary Organisations (ACEVO) are passionate about the role that sector leaders, charities, and volunteers play in building a better society. However, we think this role has been undervalued in recent years.
Charities have been recognised as crucial to the pandemic response and addressing the cost of living crisis. The sector has received support from government as a result. Some charities have been welcomed into decision-making processes. But many haven’t had this opportunity.
We think government policy should involve the full range of civil society.
What we’re doing
The manifesto will present a range of ways the next government can work with charities to make a positive difference.
We don’t expect government to accept every policy recommendation made by a charity. It would also be impossible to represent everything that our sector can offer. However, we do want the next government to put engagement with civil society at the heart of policy development, and treat charities as a serious partner.
Our main goal is for political parties to involve more voices in the policymaking process. Parties should consider whether they’re listening to the people most impacted by the decisions and plans made by government. Particularly underrepresented and marginalised voices.
We believe this will lead to more informed and responsive approaches and better outcomes.
We’ve engaged NCVO and ACEVO members and the wider charity sector to develop five key manifesto themes. This paper outlines our thinking so far, our key asks, and some questions for feedback.
Charity sector policy achievements
Charities make a huge impact when they’re involved in policymaking. For example:
- A range of organisations joined the Local Trust to successfully campaign for a new Community Wealth Fund to be created through the use of dormant assets
- Sector bodies, including NCVO and ACEVO, worked together as part of the Civil Society Group to secure additional funding for charities during the pandemic and the cost of living crisis.
We want to see more charities involved in making policy. By involving charities, government can help make sure people with lived experience are involved in decision-making.
The process so far
To get to this stage we’ve consulted with our members, both online and in-person. You told us what you wanted us to include and whether we had the right themes.
Many of the ideas you suggested are in this paper. Now we want to hear more from you about whether we’ve got this right, and what you think is missing.