30/05/13 – Moving Forward

This week, we have news of a challenge on dementia from the NHS and the Department of Education’s new Strategic Partner, as well as a range of useful resources, including a guide to getting started with social media.


Daniel Singleton will be in Leeds on the afternoon of Thursday the 20th of June. If you would like to meet with Daniel, please contact Hannah Walker at [email protected]. We would love to have an opportunity to meet with you.



NHS Challenge prize for improving dementia care and support

NHS England, in partnership with Janssen Healthcare Innovation, are inviting applications to the NHS Innovation Challenge Prize for Dementia. The prize is open to health, care and support organisations that work in partnerships, such as with voluntary organisations and local authorities, to provide innovative services that make marked differences to the lives of those affected by dementia.

Applications to the challenge are open until the 4th of September, with winners receiving up to £150,000 funding.

NHS England’s National Clinical Director for Dementia, Alistair Burns, said the goal of the challenge was to “find innovative and novel approaches which can have a measurable impact on outcomes for people with dementia, and which can be replicated nationally.”

Full information on the Challenge Prize is available on the website.


New Dept. for Education strategic partner is voluntary sector consortium

CPYNow reports that the Department for Education will be providing £1.2m over two years to a consortium of voluntary sector organisations as its new strategic partner, replacing the five separate organisations from before.. Specific projects run by the group will also be eligible for extra funding of up to £1m a year. The consortium includes 4Children, the National Children’s Bureau, The National Council for Voluntary Youth Services, Barnardo’s, the NSPCC, and the Family and Childcare Trust. The organisations will focus on different areas, with 4Children leading on early years and childcare, and the NCB and Barnardo’s covering adoption and children in care.

NCB chief executive, Hilary Emery, said they would act as ‘the voice for the voluntary sector’.

CYPNow’s full article can be found here.


Half a million people forced to rely on food banks

The Guardian writes of a report, entitled ‘Walking the Breadline’, published by Church Action on Poverty and Oxfam, that warns of changes to benefits and Jobcentre errors that have led to over half a million people in Britain having to use food banks to make it through the week. The charities behind the report have called for a parliamentary inquiry, calling the situation ‘unacceptable’.

The report highlights issues including welfare changes, un- and under-employment, falling incomes and rising costs as the causes for the increased pressure on food banks. Welfare changes were singled out as one of the most common reasons, due to delays, questionable sanctions and changes to eligibility rules.

Church Action on Poverty chief executive, Niall Cooper, said that food banks “should not replace the normal safety net provided by the state in the form of welfare support”.

The Guardian’s full article can be found here.


Government project watchdog warns over welfare reforms

In its annual report, the Cabinet Office’s projects watchdog, the Major Projects Authority, has given the second-lowest possible mark to two of the Department for Work and Pensions major reform projects. Alongside other DWP projects, including new disability payment scheme Personal Independence Payments and changes to child maintenance, Universal Credit and the benefit cap were rated ‘amber/red’ for their Delivery Confidence Assessments.

According to the Guardian, a spokesman for the DWP challenged the warning, saying that the figures used for the report were eight months out of the date and that the system was ‘on course’ for its October launch. However, as the Guardian notes, the DWP had claimed the scheme was meeting its targets back in September, the same period it claims the report’s figures are from.

The Major Projects Authority oversees 191 projects across all governmental departments. Of these, 32 were rated green, 49 amber/green, 58 amber, 23 amber/red, and 8 red.

The MPA’s report in full is available here.

The Guardian’s article on the report can be found here.




Men’s Health Week

10 – 16 June

Led by the Men’s Health Forum, Men’s Health Week aims to tackle the stigma surrounding men’s mental health, promoting wellbeing and allowing men to seek help. The Week will feature hundreds of events, run by public health groups, professionals and organisations, including sport events and health checks.

For more information in Men’s Health Week and to take part, please visit the Men’s Health Forum.



Compact Voice have opened their third annual survey, seeking views and information regarding the state of local Compacts across England, as well policy developments that affect voluntary groups.



Locality have produced a ‘social media toolkit’, a guide for community and voluntary organisations into using social media such as Twitter and Facebook.


The Charity Commission have launched a new design for their website, making it easier to find or register a charity, as well as providing a wealth of information on running a charity.


The Charity Financial Group and the Small Charities Coalition have published a report on the role of financial management in small charities. They are also seeking feedback regarding financial management standards.


The Disclosure and Barring Service (the replacement for CRB checks) will be launching its Update Service on the 17th June, allowing DBS certificates to be reused by way of yearly updates for a small annual fee.


The Resolution Foundation has published a report on the effects, positive and negative, that Universal Credit will have on older workers,


The Department for Work and Pensions have produced a toolkit for organisations regarding the new disability payment scheme, Personal Independence Payments.