Posts By: David Ainsworth

“Every penny goes to beneficiaries” no longer rings true

Among the revelations that Comic Relief had been misleading people over its investment policy, another revelation went almost unnoticed – that it has been  misleading people over how much money goes directly to the cause. Comic Relief has always pledged that every penny donors give goes directly to frontline organisations. It manages to do this,… Read more »

A baffling session on the value of Gift Aid

The Public Accounts Committee convened with its normal seriousness on Monday. The top bods of HM Revenue & Customs on one side; some political heavyweights on the other. The plan for the early part of the meeting was to conduct an investigation into whether Gift Aid had been effective at incentivising giving to charity. Unfortunately,… Read more »

If you tell the public the truth, they’ll get it

The latest edition of the Charity Brand Index, our annual publication looking at the best-recognised charities in the UK, reveals the depressing statistic that a quarter of the general public think that only around 40-59 pence in every pound given to charity “reaches or helps the cause”. A further 17 per cent think it’s less… Read more »

The sector should fight for the right to judicial review

As reported previously by Third Sector, the government appears keen to limit severely the right of voluntary sector organisations to bring judicial reviews. A consultation that closed last week outlines its proposals.

Have you measured the impact of your impact measurement?

I was pleasantly surprised by the Third Sector impact conference. That’s not something you’re really supposed to admit about a conference organised by your own organisation, but there we go: impact measurement encourages honesty. I went along wondering if it would prove to be one for the wonks – full of technical jargon and impact-speak,… Read more »

Tory Conference proved Hurd is the only minister listening

There wasn’t much good news for charities at the Conservative Party conference. They weren’t high on the agenda, that’s for sure – even at the fringe they were a fringe, so to speak. And as far as the sector was concerned, it seemed a pretty policy-free zone. There was certainly no evidence of a new… Read more »

Boozing, schmoozing and some Labour policies

The Labour Party conference kicked off on Monday morning with an ego-deflating moment for a couple of sector leaders when Paul Hackett of the Smith Institute stood up and introduced the speakers at the Social Investment Forum fringe event.

Encouraging signs for the sector at the Labour Conference

Arriving at the conference centre for the Labour conference, I make my way into a lobby filled mostly with sleek young men in good suits, large older men with aggressive facial hair, bald heads and bad suits, and young women looking slightly uncomfortable in power heels. I pass through security directly behind two elderly patrician… Read more »

What trustees should be saying over chief executive pay

After my first two blogs about the newspaper-driven debate over chief executive pay, I’ve received a lot of feedback. Most has been support from charity workers, but there has been a fair bit of opposition, too, from charity workers and others. It’s clear that this debate is far from won, even within the sector. As… Read more »

Why isn’t the sector defending chief executive pay?

In the last week or two, emergency relief charities have been pummelled by national news outlets over their payment of chief executives. But they haven’t exactly come out swinging in their own defence. Instead, they’ve put their gloves up, leaned on the ropes, and taken the punches.