Monthly Archives: December 2011

Charities should be more confident in their deals with corporates

The story in yesterday’s Guardian, which said the charity Variety Club was receiving less than £4.50 per year from each of the shoe recycling banks emblazoned with its name, will have surprised members of the public – many of whom are already wary about the proportion of their charitable donations that make it to the… Read more »

What price training for charity shop volunteers?

The last time I took a donation to a charity shop, it was a great experience. I took an unwanted jewellery box, full of costume jewellery, to a Cancer Research UK shop. The volunteer behind the desk could not have been more excited or grateful for my gift. I left with the warm glow you… Read more »

A big society minister would need a huge amount of power and influence within government

One of the main recommendations in yesterday’s Public Administration Select Committee report on the big society was that the government should appoint a big society minister. The new appointee, the report says, would have “a cross-cutting brief to help other ministers to drive through this agenda”. Judging by the initial reactions, the voluntary sector is… Read more »

If you strike gold, you need the infrastructure to cash in

There was a reminder for everyone of an important lesson in charity fundraising yesterday. When the Big Give Christmas Challenge charity match funding scheme was launched in the morning, so many people tried to access the site to make a donation that it crashed, leaving would-be-donors with a message that told them the appeal had… Read more »

Pre-school charity’s request for payment left me enraged

My son turns three over the Christmas period. It’s a significant milestone for families these days because it’s the age at which all children receive up to 15 hours of government-funded childcare each week. Potentially, it should save my household around £200 a month – or so I thought.

Dunsfold hearing does not bode well for villagers’ school plans

Earlier this week I went to the charity tribunal to watch a day-long hearing on a case brought against the Charity Commission by a group of four local residents from the Surrey village of Dunsfold. It was a textbook example of how charity law can complicate what seem to be the most straightforward of matters…. Read more »