Monthly Archives: November 2012

The sector has got to face up to the unpopularity of chugging

The other day, I wrote a story about Charlie Elphicke, Conservative MP for Dover & Deal, who advocated a ban on face-to-face fundraising. Elphicke’s remarks were made in passing, as part of a larger debate which focused on other things, but they were made memorable by the level of hatred he displayed for chugging. Chugging,… Read more »

How Barnardo’s juggles with the figures

Recently, I had occasion to log onto Barnardo’s website, and I noticed that just about the most prominent thing on it is an announcement that 95 pence of every £1 the charity spends goes directly on front line services. But earlier this week, Barnardo’s published its annual accounts. These showed a total income of £245m,… Read more »

The thorny question of lobbying by charities

Should a charity be allowed to use charitable donations (and charitable tax reliefs) to try and change people’s minds? And should an organisation that dedicates itself mostly to campaigning be allowed to call itself a charity? These are the questions that came up recently in a Parliamentary select committee that dealt partly but not entirely… Read more »

Getting to know the Brethren

Last week, I met up with two members of the Plymouth Brethren, who came to talk to me about their religion. They are currently involved in a struggle with the Charity Commission to prove that their charities and meeting halls provide a public benefit, and were keen to show their usefulness to the community at… Read more »

Here’s some route one, Dorothy Donor fundraising

I recently spent some time in a part of East Anglia where a lot of elderly people live, and through the letterbox popped a piece of cold, unaddressed direct mail from the British Red Cross, a charity I admire a lot and have donated to at times of disaster. I was there at about the… Read more »

Are young trustees really such a good idea?

Trustee Week gets under way today, and there have been plenty of calls that we should sign up more young people as trustees. As a former young trustee, I’m not convinced this is the best idea. In my teenage years and early twenties I was a board member at my student union, and remained involved… Read more »