In the news last week...

Weekly roundup of sector news from the DSC research team.

Calls for the government to commit £2bn from dormant assets to civil society

Umbrella bodies including NCVO, Acevo and the Charity Finance Group have sent a letter to Philip Hammond, the Chancellor of the Exchequer, telling him that the £2bn from dormant accounts should be used for long-term strategic funding. The letter says civil society organisations are working in an ‘increasingly tough environment, with severe pressures on local authority funding hitting the people and places facing disadvantage the hardest’. This dormant assets funding could be used to support the long-term vision of the government’s Civil Society Strategy – the letter has been sent out in advance of this month’s budget which is taking place on 29 October – read the full article here.


Six months to Brexit – cliff edge, rocky road, or sunny uplands for charities?

A report by 360Giving and Young Foundation shows correlations between philanthropy, public spending and people’s tendency to vote ‘leave’ in certain areas. It found that, alongside other factors, ‘a lack of philanthropic funding is also a strong predictor for local authority areas voting to leave the EU. Remain areas not only tend to be less deprived but on average, they have also benefited from more funding and expenditure from philanthropic and public bodies.’ DSC summarises what we know so far, and what might be to come for charities in the run up to the Withdrawal Agreement between the UK and the EU: ‘It’s possible that leave-supporting areas may ironically face greater challenges because of Brexit, but with less support – including from the charity sector.’ – read the full article here.


***Big Lottery Fund to change its name and re-brand

The Big Lottery Fund was called the Community Fund for a time when I worked there. It changed its name from the snazzy ‘National Lottery Charities Board’ to Community Fund for the same reason its giving now, although they’re proposing the words ‘National Lottery’ will be in the title this time. I think it’s quite confusing as there are so many community funds, those held by local authorities, those held by community foundations etc. It seems almost a retrograde step. My point is, if it didn’t work last time, will it work this time and where’s the money for the massive re-branding coming from…?