Posts Categorized: Third Sector

And what about the newspaper fat cats?

In recent days, both the Daily Mail and the Daily Telegraph have been on their high horses about charities paying their chief executives more than a £100,000 a year. One Mail columnist worked himself up into a fervour, putting the boot into the “hideous hypocrisy” of the charity fat cats.

But I can’t help noticing a bit of  hypocrisy on the part of the papers too. They don’t like charities spending money on staff, but they don’t seem to mind their own chief executives trousering some eye-watering sums. Read more on And what about the newspaper fat cats?…

Open season on the ‘charito-crats’

It might partly be the time of year, but everyone’s jumping on the bandwagon of the Daily Telegraph’s survey of the salaries of chief executives of the big aid charities.

First William Shawcross, chair of the Charity Commission, chose to throw fuel on the fire with his remarks about risk to reputation; this brought an equally inflammatory riposte from Sir Stephen Bubb, and then the international development secretary Justine Greening started talking about transparency in charities (which is a different, though arguably related, subject.)

Read more on Open season on the ‘charito-crats’…

Latest NCS impact measurement doesn’t go far enough

Last week’s report into impact measurement by Third Sector Research Centre made interesting reading.

The Third Sector Research Centre study concludes that there are growing concerns that funders and commissioners are shaping and dominating approaches to impact measurement in the third sector and expresses concern about a lack of comparability between sectors and “selective presentation” of results by organisations. Read more on Latest NCS impact measurement doesn’t go far enough…

A Fundraising Defence Council? It depends what you want to defend

Do we need a Fundraising Defence Council to defend the sector’s “right to ask”, as Mark Astarita, the chair of the Institute of Fundraising, proposed at the IoF convention a few weeks ago?

We certainly would if some Guardian commentators got their way. One was quoted last year by Conservative MP Charlie Elphicke as saying we should “arm the unemployed with AK47s and allow them to shoot down chuggers like dogs”. Read more on A Fundraising Defence Council? It depends what you want to defend…

ATM giving is far too clunky

Our analysis in Third Sector earlier this year indicated that ATM giving is struggling to get off the ground, not least because people fail to understand that the contribution is coming from them and not the bank. How naïve can you get?

But leaving that aside in the hope that people will wise up, I have been road-testing the system recently and I’m left feeling that the banks have misjudged the psychology and the sequencing of the giving process. The way they’ve done it is very clunky. Read more on ATM giving is far too clunky…

Opt-out monthly direct debits are a new one on me

It’s been well documented in this blog that I can be a sucker for a good cause, especially ones of the four-legged variety.

But this week I was tempted to sign up to another direct debit for a cause I’m not particularly moved by, because of an enticing new proposition I hadn’t come across before.  Read more on Opt-out monthly direct debits are a new one on me…

A discount, for charity?

My grandmother, who is in her mid-80s, has for the last 20 years volunteered with the Sue Ryder hospice near her home. Once a month the hospice holds a sale of goods donated by the public in its expansive grounds. People queue for nearly an hour before the doors open to get in. It’s so popular because you can buy pretty much anything at this sale (within reason), for ridiculously reasonable prices. Read more on A discount, for charity?…

You can live or die by a soundbite

So what’s the difference, really, between eating cows and eating horses? And what about dogs and cats? And the more you think about it, the more likely it is you might want to eat less meat or even stop eating meat altogether. Read more on You can live or die by a soundbite…

Is business rate relief worth the risk?

In the past fortnight, I have written two stories about charities that have come a cropper over unpaid business rates to local authorities.

The stories go like this: charity leases premises in ‘hard-to-let’ area for peppercorn rent on flexible terms and then claims the mandatory 80 per cent discount on business rates from the local authority. The landlord, in some cases, also pays the charity an annual donation that reflects a proportion of the discount on the full business rates they would otherwise have paid to the local authority, even if the property had remained unoccupied.  Read more on Is business rate relief worth the risk?…

Why I wish I’d run for charity

I ran the Bupa 10k in London on Monday. It was the second time I have taken part in the race but the first time I actually did any prior preparation. Having struggled to run the whole route last year, I set myself the goal of running the whole course and have, over the past few months, dragged myself out in the evenings to run at least a few miles.

And the training paid off. Although it doesn’t sound like a huge achievement, this year I ran the whole way without walking, and I’m proud of myself.  Read more on Why I wish I’d run for charity…