Personal Blog

JAN 3 2016

Ghost town...

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Ghost Town

The establishment of the Health Lottery, a competitor for the National Lottery has caused a bit of a stir. At 20.4%, the health lottery distributes a smaller share of revenue to good causes than both the for-profit National Lottery (28%) and fundraising lotteries run by hospices themselves (50-60%).

Contrary to the public perception, not all charities appeal for donations. Only around a third of the money charities receive every year comes from donations and legacies from members of the public. I think a nice way of illustrating the sheer range of activities is to provide some quirkier examples from the register.

1. The estate agent.


Photo credit:digallager / flickr

CSO
Civil Society Organisations
TSO
Third Sector Organisation
VCO
Voluntary and Community Organisation
CSE
Charities and Social Enterprises
VCS
Voluntary and Community Sector
VCFS
Voluntary, Community and Faith Sector
VCSE
Voluntary, community and social enterprise organisations. Particularly popular with the Coalition government.

I mean, just off the top of my head, I can name several supermarket chains who have asked me to buy my shopping from them. And that is not even counting the many smaller, local shops who also want to sell me stuff. Wouldn't the world be a better place if only Tesco was allowed to sell things?

I'm currently working on the NCVO Foresight website, editing and updating their strategic drivers - forces or trends that will shape the future. This afternoon's topic: the housing market. The trouble is - the drivers are text only, so I can't include any charts.

I attended a workshop this morning at the NCVO annual conference entitled "Is Philanthropy the solution to funding the Big Society? ". With my researcher hat on, I spend plenty of time comparing various ways of measuring the level of giving, but perhaps not enough time thinking about why people are giving. Why do people give to charity?

There are 170,000 charities in England and Wales, but what do they all do, and what is the best way of classifying them? Some questions are too long to answer by tweet, so this is a rapid blog on demand for the wonderful @katherinehudson

I spend a lot of time looking at the annual accounts and reports of charities, so I wonder what insight could be had from a quick comparison of the annual accounts of the recently axed Audit Commission with the annual accounts of a private sector financial services firm.

Will we be living in a Conservative utopia of public services being delivered by charities funded by philanthropists and service users? Or will the cuts programme decimate civil society as we know it?

What about the wider world? Will capital letters be so-ooo last century? Will newspapers and magazines only be available on devices made by Apple, or will they still be available in dead-tree format?

spoof of third sector magazine, circa 2020

We live in interesting times.

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Pete's tweets (@prbass)

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