It’s always a good time, at the start of the New Year, to revisit your priorities, aims and ambitions. The links below are for charities and small organisations to use as free resources for conceptualising governance review or business re-appraisal activities.
They are not exhaustive, but they can help provide ideas and a framework for assessment, change and re-energising in the New Year. We hope that you find them useful?
Essential trustee videos – a series from The Foundation for Social Improvement:
These audio-visual short films can help you determine your thinking on…
Your purpose and pubic benefit.
Compliance and acting in the organisations’s best interest
Utilising your resources responsibly and acting with care and with responsibility
Supporting small charities – a collection of free resources from Lloyds Bank Foundation in England & Wales
”These toolkits have been developed in partnership with Lloyds Banking Group and our experts to provide practical support and guidelines on best practice for charities.”
We liked these resources a lot. They are comprehensive, often surprising in their content, and free to use. This is definitely a web site to explore. Whether you are planning something new, pondering change or looking to solidify your governance with confidence.
The organisation, UN Women, has just published a new report arguing for economic development in a new era, the purpose of which is to ‘…support the survival and flourishing of life, in all its forms’.
The quotation above comes from a web article by Jayati Ghosh, on the web pages of Social Europe, in which Ghosh argues that the world economy needs to rotate 180 degrees and become focused away from the notion of market forces. Forces which can bring riches or disaster according to some unseen lottery of life.
If we live in an economic and deterministic world all we need, Ghosh argues, is the will to restructure institutional forms into better, more humane and democratic models.
The chapters in the report are challenging and an informative read, providing not only argument, but examples of how economic change can be restructured in the post-Covid landscape.
The report is not, in itself, a social enterprise driven map for the future.
Rather, we would argue, that social business and community enterprise can play their full part in re-modelling of local and national economic agendas, in the feminist mirror the UN paper holds up to us all.
Post-Covid, the illustrations and challenges of the report are already the common currency of ideas in the re-build agenda. Ideas and directions of travel that will already be familiar to the SocEnt community.
Economics that support the livelihoods of women.
Putting Care, note the capital C, at the heart of economic and community change.
Making the instruments of finance and economics gender-just.
Creating a new feminist global politics for the post-Covid era.
Are you an established business that delivers social enterprise excellence? Want to find out more about how the Social Enterprise Gold Mark can help you build on what’s unique about your business and stand out as an excellent social enterprise?
”Join Social Enterprise Mark CIC at the next instalment of their virtual coffee morning sessions to hear from fellow social enterprises who will share their recent experiences of the Social Enterprise Gold Mark assessment process and how the accreditation has benefited their business.”
You will have the opportunity to ask any questions you may have, and also meet and connect with like-minded organisations, which are also interested in proving their social enterprise credentials.
Due to the interactive nature of the event, numbers will be restricted, so please do book now to secure your place:
The Charity Commission for England and Wales have just published revised guidance for trustees of faith charities.
The guidance tells us that ‘…places of worship such as churches, gurdwaras, mandirs, mosques, synagogues, temples and viharas are normally charities’. They normally exist with purposes that are entirely charitable. This includes…
advancement of religion
prevention or relief of poverty
advancement of education
The Commission also notes that there are ancillary organisations of faith that are also charitable in their endeavours, namely
religious supplementary schools
You must register your organisation as a charity if it has charitable purposes for the public benefit and (both of the following)…
it’s based in England or Wales
it has income over £5,000 (from all sources)
There are, however, some churches that are exempt from charitable registration. You can find advice and information about this here…
Faith community members, who are already trustees, or community members who are considering becoming trustees, will find this guidance, detailed, timely and helpful in making your full contribution to the work of your charity.
A full copy of this guidance can be found on the web pages of Gov.uk here…
In the sixties the economist J.K. Galbraith came to see suburbs as a sort of camp, or island, for the affluent. There is something of this perception in the BroadwayMalyan analysis.
‘However, existing villages do have their drawbacks. Villages are the most expensive places to live in the UK outside London…’
The report attempts to map existing constraints on village life, and overlay new opportunities, or issues, that might be grasped. For example…
• Rural villages, as bases of multi-faceted active economic output, have diminished capacity historically.
• UK villages tend to have an older, affluent demographic and this affects the utility of local village schools, for instance.
• As costs rise, and services need to adapt to new consumer demand, the village needs to be flexible and opportunist to take advantage of new markets. Many are not able without creative development thinking.
• The internet plays a key role in community and economic development, particularly post-Covid. The slow spread and lack of investment in high speed broadband hampers village development economically.
• Low density of population mitigates away from the delivery of core direct health and well- being support. Another factor hampered by the reach of the internet, as above.
• With older age cohorts in villages, the use of the car is a necessity to many, which contributes to poor distribution of joined up community transport and environmental harm, for example.
This document, The Reimagined Village from BroadwayMalyan, offers a number of new perceptions and objectives for a creative and effective socio-economic housing cluster – the UK village. Their view ahead is not all pessimistic…
‘If new villages are to become an effective antidote to
the housing crisis, they need to be reimagined to better accommodate the needs of modern society – both now and into the future – all while retaining the identity and charm that makes them an attractive prospect, and an integral part of Britain’s cultural fabric.’
Within the pages of the report lies an acknowledgement of difference and a recognition that each community, wherever it lies in the rural landscape, has a unique and particular tradition, and perhaps, a different view on the thorny political questions of economic development and new infrastructure.
We subscribe to the Strong Towns Movement news-feed in the USA – they are currently publishing a set of articles on strategies and structures necessary for community development in the widest sense.
It is interesting, we think, how in the final analysis from the U.S./capitalist point of view, that public funding should be seen as the key catalyst for sustainable development in communities, of whatever size.
The future, post-Covid and all the economic and social change that lies ahead, will need to bring with it a commitment to both training and re-skill for many, but also a distinct, hardy and tenacious set of practical and soft skills for the enduring entrepreneur.
This is the message contained in a useful and perceptive series of articles to come from Pioneers Post. It is a landscape of compassion, certainly, given the context of the work, but also a landscape of uncertainty that will be managed through endurance, creativity and a survival ethos.
List of skills updated: 6th June 2021 – see below…
A heady cocktail of needs for the social entrepreneur looking to the future.
‘Experts have warned that half the world’s employees will need to be reskilled by 2025. But with which skills? In our new series, Emerald Works’ Kevin Dunne and Social Enterprise Academy’s Claire Wilson set out seven critical, “no regrets” skills that social enterprise leaders will need to flourish in the post-Covid-19 landscape.’
The seven key skills, promoted by the authors of this thinking are sound and relevant – especially if you are on the brink of leading your new SocEnt project up the enterprise foothills to sustainability.
We were worried, diving into the article, that this was a promotional pivot for a hardened, corporatist lean-into enterprise for good. We should not have worried. Vigorous commitment to the seven principles espoused can, we see, develop individuals with strong technical skills.
Skills that allied with the compassion that got them into the sector in the first place, may well be the key to all our survival.
This brief article provides information about a University of Derby free event for Social Enterprise organisations, which provides a detailed and reflective focus on the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals 2030.
SocEntEastMids is a proud supporter of the event, and we are completely aligned with the aims of the day – and in supporting participants and partners beyond the confines of this single event too.
Creating a more sustainable, compassionate world.
Date and time
Thursday, 17 June 2021
10.00 – 13.00
‘This free event is aimed at social enterprises, to engage them with the sustainable development goals (SDGs), the targets identified by the United Nations to achieve global peace and prosperity.
The event includes a series of talks from academics, policy experts and social enterprises in the field. It will also feature a learning activity, where social enterprises can learn about mapping their social impact and identifying untapped future potential using the SDGs, by reflecting on how these link to forms of wealth that a social enterprise can generate.’
Source: University of Derby
Some key web links to inform your decision to attend:
We are relocating our business base to rural Norfolk.
Our commitment to the support of SocEnt seedbed development, with individuals and partners across the UK, remains undimmed and unfaltering.
All our usual webmail, phone numbers and e-contacts remain as before.
We are now situated on the outskirts of Swaffham, Norfolk UK. We are two minutes away from the the local Waitrose store and the town wind turbine blades cast a shadow across our access road. (Easy to spot…Ed).
Swaffham is an ancient market town, and from the 14thC was a centre for the wool trade in Norfolk. Now the town has a wealth of local entrepreneurship and businesses to support the rural hinterland.
EcoTech Business Centre, Offices of SmithMartin LLP, Unit 27d, Turbine Way, Swaffham, Norfolk, UK.
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From the Office of the Regulator of Community Interest Companies
Sign up to our “All you need to know about submitting a successful application ” webinar taking place on 25th February 11am-12pm here
‘This is your chance to get some tips on how to complete a successful application of incorporation or conversion to a community interest company, and to acquire further information on what the Regulator looks at when considering an application and solutions to the common errors that we see.’