Fundraising, Management & leadership, Government and the Voluntary Sector

DSC policy update - week commencing 4 January 2021

DSC Researcher, Lauren Shaw, rounds up the policy news from around the sector.

Today marks the start of a third national lockdown, lasting a minimum of 6 weeks. I know it’s difficult to keep positive, but the prospect of widespread vaccinations in the coming months means that we’re not ‘back to square one’ – in fact, we’re nearing the end. Keep smiling and be kind to others around you.

Here’s the latest policy news:

Caron Bradshaw awarded OBE in New Year’s Honours list

This years’ New Year’s Honours List recognised the efforts of several voluntary sector leaders, including our very own Chair, Caron Bradshaw (now OBE)! Massive congratulations to you Caron, from all of us at DSC. Also amongst those recognised were Caroline Mason of Esmée Fairbairn Foundation, Peter Wanless of the NSPCC and Ian Lush, Chief Executive of the Imperial Health Charity which raises vital funds for hospitals across north-west London. You can read more about all the awards recipients here. The Cabinet Office calculated that 65% of all people in receipt of an award had ‘undertaken outstanding work in their communities either in a voluntary or paid capacity’. A lot can be said for last year, but these figures show community spirit remained strong in the face of adversity.

A Civil Society Forum is set to be established as part of the UK’s Brexit deal

The forum – made up of both UK and EU-founded civil society organisations, as well as domestic advisory groups such as NGOs – will meet at least once a year to ensure a continuing and prosperous relationship with European stakeholders. Rita Chadha of the Small Charities Coalition welcomed the news, but stressed that the forum must be representative of the sector as a whole. She said: “There is a real opportunity for the government to stand by small charities and enable them to play their part in the levelling-up agenda.”

Unicef receives backlash from Jacob Rees-Mogg

After news broke that Unicef would help fund emergency food aid in the UK for the first time in history, the charity received some backlash from Conservative MP, Jacob Rees-Mogg, who deemed the move ‘a political stunt’. The charity has since defended its decision, arguing that it was merely acting in response to an ‘unprecedented crisis’ of food poverty, largely driven by the current government’s reluctance to make provisions through the state. Unicef UK has already pledged over £700,000 in support of community groups across the country working with children and families at risk of food insecurity.