The future of NCIA – special meeting April 17th


Listen to us cartoonIf you’ve visited our website recently you may have noticed that we have started a conversation about the future – both the future of NCIA and how the campaign issues that we stand for can best be carried forward ( .

As part of this process we are holding a special ‘Assembly’ … Continue reading

NCVO buys out its biggest critics

corruption 2NCVO is accused today of harming voluntary groups and the communities they serve. In a forensic examination of NCVO activities over the last decade or so, Les Huckfield shows how NCVO has made voluntary agencies subservient to Government policies and begging for crumbs from private corporations. As damaging to the reputation of NCVO is the claim that their … Continue reading

Sharks and corporate raiders – letter to Australia

corporate raiders

We are not alone. The UK scene of privatisation, corporate take-over and a fearful, if not, colluding voluntary sector is far advanced in Australia.  NCIA’s Penny Waterhouse has been talking to Colin Penter from her home town in Perth, Western Australia about how it looks to them at each end of the globe.

Letter to NCIA Greetings from Perth Western … Continue reading

19th March – Voluntary Groups and ‘Workfare’


Voluntary Groups, Workfare and Benefits Sanctions – the Perils of Participation

Wednesday 19th March 12.30pm-3pm

LIFT Islington, 45 White Lion Street, London N1 9PW

The ‘Help to Work Programme’ (introduced last April) is specifically designed to attract the involvement of charities and voluntary groups.

Has your voluntary group received offers of ‘too-good-to-be-true’ 6-month long ‘volunteer’ … Continue reading

Voluntary services face bleak future as ‘servants of the Government’

do-nothing-go-forward-pic-monkey2Launching the final report from their Inquiry into the Future of Voluntary Services, the National Coalition for Independent Action (NCIA) has today called on voluntary and community services to face up to a decisive moment in its history. In a blistering critique of the systemic threats posed to the values, work and freedom of the … Continue reading

Speaking out: why the voluntary sector needs to hold on to its campaign roots

megaphoneResponding to Mike Aiken’s report on campaigning and voluntary services, and with the General Election looming, Gavin Barker explores what we might actually do to counter our “hollowed out democracy hijacked by a corporate elite”. Linking the muzzling of dissent to the general weakening of democracy, Gavin argues that the election provides the opportunity to Continue reading

Charities told to keep quiet or lose government contracts

gaggingPRESS RELEASE: New research reveals that charities and other voluntary groups are often absent from campaigns to tackle the root causes of poverty. A report released today shows that voluntary groups, especially those under contract to government, face threats to remain silent about their experiences and many are fearful to speak out in case they … Continue reading

Campaigning in the spotlight

Dodo-nothing-go-forward-pic-monkey2 voluntary groups delivering services still campaign for the interests of their service users and communities? This is the question examined by the latest in our series of reports on the Future of Voluntary Services. “Saying Less and Doing More” by Mike Aiken reaches troubling conclusions. Though small informal groups and activists are still very much in evidence, local … Continue reading

Struggling to Survive… Independently – 5 stories from the frontline

do-nothing-go-forward-pic-monkey2Latest production from our Inquiry into the Future of Voluntary Services….five stories from locally-based Voluntary Services Groups struggling to survive in the environment of cuts to funding and moves to the use of contracting approaches by public bodies. They illustrate the difficulties and dilemmas experienced, and some of the responses being adopted, by groups operating within … Continue reading

One size does not fit all

imagesP2OJJNRCLeeds GATE was set up ten years ago to improve the quality of life for Gypsies and Travellers in Leeds, and West Yorkshire.  To achieve this it has set objectives focused on homes, health, education, employment, citizenship and social inclusion.  The organisation is structured as a charitable company limited by guarantee with the governing documents … Continue reading