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Friday, 24 February 2012

Friday Guest Blog

Catherine Stuart-Jervis, Chief Executive , The Charity Service

Following the GMCVO Membership Survey in 2010 which indicated that many charities and groups felt they were at risk during 2012/2013 due to public spending cuts and the scarcity of grants, The Charity Service reviewed our strategy with the aim of trying to offer as much help as possible to charitable groups working at the heart of their communities.

The Charity Service is a Manchester-based UK wide charity that enhances charitable giving. We have a wide range of services that support registered charities, governance checked voluntary and community groups, individual donors and businesses to “Make More Of Every Gift”. We help charities and businesses to raise, process and distribute funds to help sustain a diverse and thriving third sector.

Larger charities are increasingly utilising more aggressive fundraising techniques and technology to access donations. The UK is a generous society but donations over the last decade have been stable. We particularly want to help charities and groups to get online so they can improve their market position to receive electronic donations which has seen an 85% growth in activity during the last three years. We also want smaller groups to understand and access tax incentives to add value to any donations received. We know that smaller, under-resourced community groups can find technology and taxes difficult so we are here to help.

Our services include Payroll Giving, Charity Cheque Accounts, Online Donation Services, Donate Now Hyperlinks for websites, Trust Management and Grant Distribution, Governance Consultancy, Wills and Inheritance Services, Charity Accountancy Services, Corporate Social Responsibility Planning and Investment Expertise. As part owner of an established charity investment expert, we offer a full charity portfolio administration, co-trustee and financial advisory and management service.

We work with businesses large and small to help plan, deliver and measure the social impact of their Corporate Social Responsibility work. We can help with payroll giving schemes, partnership brokerage with local and national charities, Community Investment activity, media engagement and provide social impact reports as necessary for tender applications.

The Charity Service is one of the longest serving of Manchester’s charities with roots going back to 1924 and is well known and respected as an independent infrastructure organisation that can help charitable organisations and donors to ensure their finances and governance requirements are well managed, effective and fully compliant.
We are a “virtual” organisation so our own administration costs are efficient, we do not seek to accrue reserves – only to remain sustainable and our fee structure is flexible and competitive. As a charity ourselves all fees raised remain within the charitable sector and enable us to offer advice and support to smaller organisations at no direct cost.

For more information please visit our recently re-launched website and our online donations site unlike many online donation sites, we do not make a charge to register an appeal. Or you can call 0303 999 1212 for more information. Follow all our links to twitter, youtube, linkedin and flickr from the website.

I'd like to invite you to our “Strictly Funding” event co-hosted with Greater Manchester Centre for Voluntary Organisation (GMCVO) on Wednesday 18th April, where we will explore alternatives to traditional funding for third sector and not for profit organisations. This event is aimed at infrastructure and other third party organisations looking at alternatives to grants and to diversify and future proof their funding strategies. Come along to the event to get advice and explore various avenues of funding and finance resilience – after all, if you don’t, your beneficiaries could be at risk!

The keynote speaker will be Tom Latchford. You will learn about Action Planning, followed by a whistle stop tour of innovative options to explore for your organisation.

Stall Holders - including the Royal Bank of Scotland, Unity Trust Bank, Castlefield Investments, CCLA, CAF, Charity Bank and local accountancy firms – will offer expert advice on investments and other forms of social finance.

For further details, please contact Tanya Coutts, 0161 277 1002.
To book please register online via the link below.

Location: GMCVO, St Thomas Centre, Ardwick Green North, Manchester, M12 6FZ.

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