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Volunteering and sector news

GLV features in Evening Standard

On Monday 27 January 2014 the Evening Standard published a charity special on the London volunteering scene.

The article highlights the benefits of volunteering, gives advice on how to volunteer and showcases the invaluable contribution of London’s Volunteer Centres.

To read the full article please click here

GLV Network events and AGM 2014

Thursday 16th January 2013,  Voluntary Action Islington, N1 9JP

We are inviting all our members to our first network event of 2014, incorporating our AGM. This will be a chance to share news, views and ideas.

The morning session is open to members of our Quality Network where there will be a chance to hear about the GLV’s latest best practice materials for youth volunteering.

This will be followed by Lunch, Networking and our Annual General Meeting which will be held from 1.45pm-2pm.

The afternoon session will be for our Strategic Managers Network and will include a talk from our special guest speaker Jamie Ward-Smith on the future of Do-it.

GLV Business plan and Christmas drinks

Wednesday 18th December 2013, 3 – 5.30pm, SE1

We’re inviting all our members to a consultation meeting to discuss our plans for 2014, and ensure your views inform the work we undertake in the year ahead.

Feedback from the meeting will shape our business plan for 2014, and mean that we continue to deliver the services you need.

To reward you for contributing your thoughts to our plans the meeting will end with Christmas drinks and a chance to network with colleagues from across the network.

Let us know that you’re coming by emailing David and we’ll send you a briefing note before the day.

Team London Awards: shortlisted nominees announced

Thank you to everyone who nominated a volunteer superstar for a Team London Award. The Awards celebrate not only the excellence of volunteers, but also the amazing things that we can accomplish when we work together to make London the best city it can be.

The Awards ceremony will take place at City Hall on Monday 25 November, with awards presented by the Mayor of London and host of special guests.

The shortlisted nominees have now been announced and further details about the awards can be found on our Team London 2013 Achievement Awards page.

Accredited Learning for Volunteer Managers

Commencing January 2014, Volunteer Centre Greenwich are offering Institute of Learning & Management (ILM) accredited training with a Level 3 Certificate in Management of Volunteers.

The course runs over ten weeks, each weekly session lasting 4-5 hours, and includes one to one support throughout.

Two briefing sessions are being held, where you can find out more – 12 November and 3 December 2013.

Download more detail below.

VC Greenwich ILM training – page 1

VC Greenwich ILM training – page 2

The Big Volunteering Network Event

Join us on 26 September 2013 for our biggest network event ever.

A mammoth must-go day of workshops, speakers and networking for any volunteering involving organisation.

Don’t miss out!

See the full programme and book now.

Team London 2013 Achievement Awards

Just announced – the nomination period for the second Team London Achievement Awards is now open.

The Mayor of London will once again give well deserved recognition to London volunteers and their contribution to the community and spirit of the capital city.

Nominations close on 20 September with the presentation ceremony taking place at City Hall on the afternoon of 25 November.

Find out who’s eligible and nominate the outstanding individuals and organisations in your local area on our Team London 2013 Achievement Awards page now.

Love Food Hate Waste Report

Earlier this year, GLV and members of our Volunteer Centre network helped to successfully deliver the Love Food Hate Waste message in partnership with WRAP (Waste and Resources Action Programme).

Our funder’s final report on the work is a very positive read on our activity and achievements – congratulations and thanks to everyone that was involved!

Download and take a look at the report below.

Love Food Hate Waste Volunteer Coordinator Final Report (doc)

VCQA Survey Report

Following the national survey of Volunteer Centres completed in May, and as promised at our recent network event, NCVO have produced and shared their final report.

A working group will submit a business case to NCVO this Autumn with roll out to follow in 2014.

Take a look at the findings from the responses given by downloading the report below.

IVR Review of VCQA – Final Report (pdf)

GLV Network Events Notes

Nothing but positive words from all those that attended and fed back to us on our latest events in June – thank you!

A training session on the Experts in Evaluation Toolkit, updates from GLV and our guest, John Carlin from NCVO, presentations and discussions on options for Accredited Learning for Volunteers plus plenty of lunch and networking opportunities for all.

If you couldn’t make it, you can get a good flavour of the day by downloading the documents below.

GLV Update – 26 June 2013

NCVO Update – 26 June 2013

Accredited learning for volunteers – GLV Presentation

Accredited Learning Discussion – 26 June 2013

Please go to our Projects page for information and resources from the Experts in Evaluation Toolkit along with upcoming training dates around London.

Volunteers Week Logo Web - Compact version

A big thank you to all our trustees and volunteers over the past year and beyond – an invaluable fount of enthusiasm, knowledge and experience that we couldnt’ do without !

Volunteers’ Week is an annual celebration of the fantastic contribution millions of volunteers make across the UK.

See what’s going on around the country, or add your own words and events, at the new Volunteers Week website.

Disclosure & Barring Service Update

Need to see at a glance how the Disclosure & Barring Service (DBS) has been updated and simplified?

Download the DBS presentation that clearly shows the background to the key changes, the process and the benefits of the new online checks.

DBS Update Service – Stakeholder Presentation 23 May 13

In Praise of Volunteer Centres

In response to recent comments from Justin Davis Smith, an interesting blog counters much of what was suggested in his words and highlights some very innovative, tech savvy, forward thinking by the Volunteer Centre network.

Jamie Ward-Smith has some very encouraging and positive thoughts that are well worth sharing.

Read his blog post at the ivo website.

VCQA Consultation

With the third wave of VCQA complete, a national working group has been put in place to look at how NVCO moves forward with it.

All Volunteer Centres are urged to complete the national survey, which closes 31 May 2013, and the group next meet on 13 June.  They are keen to look at the following areas:

Any London Volunteer Centres that would like to feed into the consultation and meeting, should get in touch with Clive (Chief Executive, Volunteer Centre Southwark), who has been asked to sit on the working group.

You can find the Working Group’s Terms of Reference below, along with a link to the survey.

VCQA Working Group Terms of Reference

Take the survey now

Do-It Transfer Update

Following the announcement in March that YouthNet was seeking to transfer Do-it to a new owner, the specification for bidders, which includes selection criteria and funding eligibility information has been published. The document also includes details about the information sessions that prospective bidders will be able to attend.

The application form has also been published, with a closing date of midday, Monday 8 July 2013.

An Expression of Interest form is also available which includes an option to share details with other interested parties.

Find the full details and download the documents from the Do-It website.

Volunteers Week 2013

The new Volunteers Week website is up and running and would love you to add any activities or thank-you’s going on in your area.

Take a look at the Volunteers Week website here.

NCVO / Serco Code of Practice

After extensive consultation, NCVO and Serco have published a new Code of Practice, aimed at improving working relationships between the private sector and the Voluntary and Community Sector (VCS).

We hope this will help discussions for anyone that’s experienced problems with Work Programme Providers.

See the NCVO / Serco Code of Practice here

Welfare Reforms

With changes to the benefit and tax credit system, and the introduction of Universal Credit, NCVO has produced a paper highlighting new challenges that the voluntary sector will be faced with.

Download and read the report below.

NCVO Welfare Reforms and Voluntary Organisations – April 2013

New Health & Care Reports

Two new pieces of work have recently been issued in relation to volunteering and health and care.

The King’s Fund research suggests volunteers’ full potential is far from being reached and outlines several challenges to volunteering, including financial pressures leading to volunteers ‘substituting’ for paid workers.

Separately, Health and Wellbeing Boards are now responsible for developing the Joint Strategic Needs Assessment (JSNA), Joint Health and Wellbeing Strategy and commissioning priorities for local areas. Regional Voices has produced a guide for such boards.

Take a look at the reports below.

The Kings Fund – Volunteering Health and Care

Regional Voices – Guide for Health and Well Being Boards

Nesta Volunteer Centre Funding

Eight Volunteer Centre in the Midlands, North and Scotland have received funding from the Innovation Fund administered by Nesta.

Projects include setting up a Volunteer Centre in a prison, developing volunteer roles alongside a local police force and text messaging to promote volunteer opportunities.

See the full list of awards on the Nesta website.

Transforming Local Infrastructure

NAVCA has published a report highlighting the work going on in the 74 areas receiving Transforming Local Infrastructure (TLI) investment.

It pulls together similar areas of work based on the original funding bids to enable sharing of information and ideas between the programmes and identifies issues to be addressed.

Download the NAVCA report.

Disclosure and Barring News

Changes announced by the Home Office mean that Disclosure and Barring checks will no longer include cautions/convictions for minor offences after six years for adults and two years for young offenders in England and Wales.

Read more at BBC News online.

Latest Network Events

March saw the first of GLV’s new style events, offering focussed sessions for distinct groups from our membership and networks – Strategic Volunteer Managers, Quality Volunteering (including brokerage) and Governance.

Community ID delivered excellent training in Deaf and Interpreter Awareness, including practical responses to questions relating to volunteering and outlining their services, including free training for charity and not for profit organisations.  See our notes below, links to their presentation to follow soon.

A whirlwind tour of Social Return on Investment (SROI) and how our network might use it was presented by nef consulting to our Strategic Volunteering Managers group.  Any Volunteer Centre Managers wishing to consider the potential for this in more detail should get in touch with us.  Take a look at the nef consulting presentation below.

Also below are notes on other key news and activity offered, including Experts in Evaluation and information given by Do-It on their forthcoming change of ownership.

GLV & Network News – March 2013

Community ID – Notes

nef consulting Presentation – March 2013

SROI Journey of Change

Social Value Act

The new Social Value Act came into force in early 2013 and is good news for charities and volunteer-involving organisations.  It means commissioners, within specified procurement parameters, are now legally obliged to take social and environmental benefits into account when making decisions about delivering public services.

Urban Forum has produced a new briefing on the Act, giving an overview and what it potentially offers, along with its limitations.  Take a look below.

Urban Forum Briefing on The Social Value Act 2012

Guide to EU Procurement

NCVO and NAVCA have produced a new free guide to EU procurement law - the only one specifically for the voluntary sector.  Pathway Through The Maze is described as an invaluable guide for anyone interested or involved in the commissioning and procurement of public services.  It offers organisations and public sector commissioners the knowledge to work together to create more intelligent commissioning processes.

Pathway Through The Maze (pdf)


As part of the Nesta funded project New Ways of Giving Time, the Institute of Volunteering Research (IVR) has published a review on micro-volunteering. It’s mostly viewed positively but perceived to have drawbacks. See the report below.

You can also feed into their research by completing their survey by 15 March 2013.

New Ways of Giving Time – Micro-Volunteering

Co-Producing With Communities

A new discussion report has been produced by Birmingham University’s Institute of Local Government Studies, titled ‘Beyond The State: Mobilising and Co-Producing With Communities’. It provides case studies and analysis of UK and US experience in community organising to solve problems and improve public services.

Read the report here.

Community Life

The findings of the Cabinet Office’s official survey show an increase in both volunteering and charitable giving. Volunteering is up from 65% in 2010/2011 to 71%, with an even bigger increase in the proportion of people volunteering regularly. Other responses showed a strong sense of community spirit and neighbourhood belonging.  See the detailed report below.

Community Life Survey

London 2012 Legacy

LOCOG has announced that it will hand its customer database to Sport England, working in partnership with UK Sport and London & Partners. From April, monthly newsletters will go out to 5.3 million people, which will including volunteering content from Join In and local opportunities within communities. See more information at the LOCOG website.

New Social Media Survey

Urban Forum have a new report on how people in the community sector are using online tools and social networking sites. Following a survey looking at how and what’s used, amongst the expected findings, it brought a few surprises to light also.  Browse their full findings and recommendations here.

An Expert’s View

We were fortunate to be joined by ex-NAVCA Chief Executive, Kevin Curley CBE, at our AGM in December.  He gave an insight into his experiences, alongside his views on the current sector and suggestions for how the we might respond to the challenges faced.  To see a summary of his words, download the summary notes below.

Kevin Curley CBE – December 2012

Nesta Innovation in Giving Fund

NCVO have run two workshops in Manchester and Birmingham, ahead of the deadline for applications to be submitted for the  Volunteer Centre programme.  The closing date for applications and videos is midday, Friday 8 February 2013.

Funding of £50,000 will be awarded to ten Volunteer Centres, along with access to practical support and resources over an 8-10 month period this year.

For any one who can’t make the remaining workshop, or who needs a refresher of the areas covered, download the presentation below.

Innovation in Giving VC Programme Workshop

Happy Holidays from GLV

Big thanks to everyone we’ve worked with in 2012, our members and especially all the volunteers that have helped us along the way, trustees and project support alike.

After a busy year of change and challenges, we close our offices Friday 21 December and will re-open on Tuesday 8 January 2013.

See you in the new year!

Free Training – Love Food Hate Waste

With Christmas round the corner, seasonal menus being prepared and purse strings being ever-stretched, what better time to  arm yourself with top tips and practical advice to help spend wisely, manage your food supplies and minimise waste?

The Love Food Hate Waste message is actively spreading through London with free information and training sessions in Croydon, Islington, Stratford, Tower Hamlets and Westminster in December.  Come alone or as a group, whether it’s with family, friends, neighbours or colleagues, and be surprised at just what you can do to help yourself, the environment and others around you.

Places are limited so email us now to book yours.

Love Food Hate Waste

Our latest project hits the ground running this week, as our London-wide Volunteer Co Ordinators are fully trained and on the look out for Food Waste Champions across the Capital.

Love Food Hate Waste is the national campaign to reduce our currently enormous food and drink waste.  In London, we have nine Volunteer Co Ordinators to help spread the message with the indispensable aid of local Food Waste Champions.  They offer information, advice and tips in local communities on how we can all do our bit and ultimately help ourselves and our environment.  You can find out more about being a Food Waste Champion by taking a look at the London Events Volunteering Calendar on our Volunteer page.

To find out about the campaign, take a look at the Love Food Hate Waste website.

GLV AGM & Network Event

Our next Network Event takes place on Wednesday 12 December, along with our Annual General Meeting and we are delighted to welcome ex-NAVCA Chief Executive, Kevin Curley, who will share his thoughts on the current sector and take questions from the floor.

We also hope to combine business with a little pleasure and look forward to raising a festive glass with members at the end of the day.

Download the agenda below for more details.  Invitations and registration (via Eventbrite) will be forwarded shortly.

GLV AGM 2012 Agenda

NCVO Appoint Executive Director for Volunteering

Volunteering England Chief Executive, Justin Davis Smith, will lead NCVO’s new Volunteering Directorate under the organisations’ merger proposals.  As Executive Director for Volunteering and Development, Dr Davis Smith will be NCVO’s senior ambassador for volunteering.

Dr Davis Smith said he is delighted to take on the role  and that he will ‘continue to advocate strengthening the contribution volunteers already make in voluntary, public and private sector organisations, and ensure the crucial roles volunteers play in our communities are recognised and supported.’

In his own statement, Sir Stuart Etherington, Chief Executive of NCVO, states he is ‘very pleased’ to have Justin on board and describes him as ‘an outstanding champion for volunteering.’

NCVO also announced the appointment of two Volunteering England trustees to the NCVO Board – Tessa Willow (Volunteer Centre Liverpool) and Chris Wade (Victim Support) and the appointment of Lynne Regan (Volunteer Centre Bexley) to the Nominations Committee which considers nominations to the NCVO Board.  Lynne steps down from the VE Board, after four years service.

Read more at at the Volunteering England and NCVO websites.

Join the £ood Waste Challenge

Recycle for London’s £ood Waste Challenge takes place from 17 – 30 November 2012. Over the two weeks, Londoners are asked to see how much food they throw away in a normal week, then given tips and information on how to reduce their waste. The challenge is to reduce your food waste by the maximum possible over a one week period.

What do participants need to do?  Simple - sign up & pledge to reduce your food waste, keep a diary of what food and drink you throw away at home, weigh it (tools can be provided to help) and ideally let others know about your experiences and efforts through media such as Facebook, blogs, photo blogs, video diaries, Tweets or printed media.  The Challenge culminates at City Hall on Friday 23 November where you can meet other participants face to face and share your results, ideas and learning.

Find out more and register at the Recycle for London website.

NCVO / VE Panel Discussion

GLV were delighted to be joined by Sir Stuart Etherington (Chief Executive, NCVO) and Dr Justin Davis Smith CBE (Chief Executive, Volunteering England) at our October network event, where they informed and updated us on the proposed merger of their two organisations.

Justin offered some background and context, referring to the current strange time of volunteerings profile riding high, whilst the case for investment and infrastructure is increasingly difficult. He is personally attached to Volunteering England but the driver for the merger is all about supporting Volunteer Centres and volunteer involving organisations. With rapidly decreasing government funding, Volunteering England entered challenging times and looked to diversify their funding streams. NCVO was amongst the organisations they opened dialogue with and ultimately offered the best fit.

Sir Stuart reiterated the good fit of the two organisations and how their merger was not about Volunteering England being a ‘bolt on’. It’s about putting volunteering at the heart of what they do and reimagining what NCVO represents. Volunteering should be an integral part of the Civil Society agenda and the joint skills of Volunteering England and NCVO will hopefully bring volunteering into the heart of citizenship. With individuals such as Martyn Lewis as Chair and Tanni Grey Thompson joining as President, Sir Stuart and NCVO are unlikely to be allowed to lose sight of their commitment to volunteering.

Amongst the plans for the new organisation’s governance are the inclusion of Volunteering England members on its Board, the creation of an assembly to include a volunteering college, regional support of volunteering institutions and a new directorate of volunteering to support local infrastructure.

The merger is due to be finalised on 1 January 2013 and formal announcements are imminent regarding governance and staffing.

The overriding message was that both organisations remain committed to volunteering and supporting volunteering.

The session ended with a brief question and answer session – take a look below at what the discussion prompted.

GLV Q&A with NCVO and Volunteering England (doc)

New GLV Chair

We are delighted to welcome Cameron Fitzwilliam-Grey as the new Chair of GLV.

Having joined the Board earlier this year, Cameron brings a breadth of sector experience with him and currently works on a number of projects at Volunteer Centre Camden.  In his formal announcement to members this week, he offered his thoughts on GLV’s future:

‘GLV has undergone considerable changes over recent times. Within the context of the challenges faced across the voluntary and community sector, we continue to work towards defining & strengthening our strategy, voice and reach. There will be further challenges, of course, but I am positive and optimistic about the opportunities that we will pursue and I come to the organisation unafraid to implement change.’

The announcement coincides with the news that GLV Director, Eithne Rynne, is to move on to a new position at LVSC. Discussions are in progress over the restructuring of the organisation and more detail will follow.  Watch this space!

2012 Volunteering Legacy

After an incredible Summer of not just sport, what will the longer term volunteering legacy be?  Has there been a sea change in attitudes to volunteering? A recent BBC Radio 4  ‘You & Yours’ programme took the time to focus discussions on this recurring topic and included contributions from Do-It CEO, Emma Thomas.

Take a listen to the programme here.

Latest Funding Cuts Report

The voluntary and community sector continues to deliver in spite of the impact of the recession and economic climate.

LVSC’s latest funding cuts report details those impacts, including the sad news that two London voluntary and community sector employment skills providers have closed, at the same time as London Civic Forum announces its closure.

The report is a working document showing cuts at a London-wide level or by borough or sub-sector since April 2010 and complements the Big Squeeze 2012 report  - an analysis of  their annual survey on the impact of the recession and public funding cuts on the voluntary and community sector in London.  Download the updated report below.

LVSC London Cuts – August 2012

Funding Central

Good news – the Cabinet Office announced it will extend NCVO’s contract to manage Funding Central until March 2014. Approximately £500k will be invested in the service which has helped charitites access around £100m funding.

Read more and see how Funding Central might help you at the NVCO website.


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