A selection of news relevant to all areas of the sector – business grants, Government White Paper on Local Recovery and Devolution, Domestic Abuse resources, suggestions to increase donations to your organisation, and resources to run your VCSE organisation, including how to close it down, if the worst happens.

Business support grants

Cornwall Council has been allocated £24m by the Government to support local businesses, with a Local Restrictions Support Grant scheme, to support businesses registered for business rates that have been forced to close as a result of the second coronavirus lockdown.    Details are on the Council’s website.

We have been told that charities are eligible, if they meet the criteria. You can get funding if;

  • If you are a business which is business rated, (even if you don’t have to pay business rates)
  • If your main business has face to face dealings with other people. For example, this could include non-essential retail, leisure, personal care, sports facilities and hospitality businesses. It could also include businesses that operate primarily as an in-person venue, but which have been forced to close those services and provide a takeaway-only service instead.
  • If you been forced to close due to the national lockdown.

You can see the full details on the Council’s website above.

A second set of grants are currently being finalised by the Council for which the criteria are being set by Cornwall Council, rather than the Government. The announcement on the details for this is expected this week – and this page will be updated as soon as we hear what the criteria are.

Renewing Neighbourhood Democracy

Ministers must make full use of the forthcoming Local Recovery and Devolution White Paper to give communities the power and resources they need to build back a better society, a report by the think-tank Localis has advised.

In a study issued today entitled ‘Renewing Neighbourhood  Democracy – Creating Powerful Communities’ the think-tank calls on central government to facilitate a clear pathway for communities to take control over local services, assets and social infrastructure.

The paper argues government should enshrine the rights of communities to self-organise by creating ‘pop up parishes’ and set local spending choices at neighbourhood level through ‘people’s budgets’.

You can read the press statement here, or download the full report above.

Domestic Abuse information

Because Domestic Abuse and Sexual Violence are situations which anyone could come across in their dealings with the public, we’re raising the profile again of the Council’s DA information. The Safer Cornwall Facebook page is going to be sharing a series of messages over the rest of Lockdown, to help ensure that people know that there is help available if they need it. Please share widely.

Tip 1: You can still access services during Lockdown

Tip 2: Preparation increases safety

Increasing donations to your organisation

After the rescheduled London Marathon in October, the Guardian ran an article looking at ways organisations can increase giving at this time. These include

  • Payroll giving
  • Encourage Gift Aid on donations
  • Encourage giving shares instead of money
  • Encourage people to consider leaving money in their wills
  • Encourage donations in kind

The Guardian article is written to the people potentially donating, rather than to the charities, but is interesting reading.

Charity Digital has produced a useful article about the best digital fundraising platforms here. They allow you to read 3 free articles on their website without signing up to register (which is also free).

Running your charity or voluntary organisation

Policies and procedures templates

The Directory of Social Change (DSC) has a policies and procedures template package available to download with 32 templates for £99, covering everything from the big issues like bullying and disciplinary action down to the nitty gritty of fire procedures, and the details of every possible kind of leave. You can find out more, and purchase them, from the DSO website.

Redundancies in your organisation?

HR Specialists Croner have produced a useful pair of checklists – Working from home, and Alternatives to redundancy, some template letters around reducing working hours, and a guide to employment law on redundancy. You can download them all from their online newsletter. All are free to use, but we hope you don’t need them.

Closing down your organisation

If the worst comes to the worst, and your charity or voluntary organisation can no longer continue, the NCVO has created a useful resource to help you take all the necessary actions. These include informing your team, as well as the official actions needed. We sincerely hope you never have to use it.