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4 March 2011

VCS Assembly News Update 4 March (Issue 60)

In this issue:

1. News
2. Dates for Your Diary
3. Funding News
4. Consultations
5. Compact
6. Career Opportunities
7. Important Reminders

1. News

New Website Launched
A new website, designed to make a real difference to the retired community of Shropshire has just been launched. The website has 4 easy to navigate sections.
GETTING ONLINE - Details of free and paid for, computer coursers for the complete novice up to the experienced surfer.
ADVICE - Details of charities and support organisations to help with every aspect of being retired.
SOCIAL - A compilation of hobbies and social activities to help the silver Surfer community stay active and meet new friends. We would ask anyone who has an event or club to enter their details onto our site.
SERVICES - Here we encourage local business to provide discounts to our readers in the form of printable vouchers from our website. In return, we allow those businesses to advertise for free.
The website can be viewed here: http://www.silversurfersclub.org/ 
For further details or to find out how you can get involved (you may wish for your group or organisation to be listed on the website) please contact Bill Gilmour. Telephone 07817 565 170 or email bill@silversurfersclub.org.                            

New Opportunities with the National Trust
The National Trust wants to share its properties and knowledge to increase the diversity and skills base in the workforce - can you help? An exciting opportunity is to be based in Shropshire, at Attingham Park and at Dudmaston Hall.  The National Trust would like to reach out to Black and Minority Ethnic groups; Long Term unemployed and education under achievers in Shropshire to let them know about this exciting opportunity.  If you can help or would like more information, please contact clairepoulton@nationaltrust.org.uk. For further details please see the attached document.
pdfNational Trust Project Details (14.99KB)

Parent Partnership Service in
Shropshire and Telford & Wrekin
Parent Partnership Service in Shropshire and Telford & Wrekin is piloting a new monthly e-Bulletin to inform parents of children with special educational needs about local events and activities.  This is not intended to duplicate existing newsletters, but to flag up new sources of information and a diary.  It will not be including information about "short-breaks" activities as there are already very effective ways of letting people know about these, but it will let people know when there is a new newsletter.

I have attached the January/February edition. If you or any parents you are in contact with would like to have this e-mailed to them directly, please ask them to request a copy by emailing Alex Hiam: alex@pps-shropshireandtelford.org.uk
pdfBulletin Jan Feb (400.35KB)

The Green Fingers Project
Do you enjoy gardening and growing flowers, plants and vegetables?
Do you have 3-5 hours free every fortnight?
Would you be interested in helping someone with learning and/or physical disability look after their own garden?
Do you live in Whitchurch, Oswestry or Ellesmere areas?
If you can answer 'yes' The Green Fingers Project run by Bethpage (a registered charity that provides support for people with disabilities) is looking for volunteers to help. Call John on 07516 743 317 or email jburns@bethpage.co.uk

Volunteers Needed for Digital Switchover
The Digital Switchover Lead for our area is hoping to hold information stands on the two switchover dates plus the day after each (so four days in total) in Ludlow.  However, to do this they need to find volunteers.  A team leader and three others on each day (dates 6, 7, 20 and 21 April). Training for the volunteers will be provided ahead of time, and the team leader will need to be willing to set up on the day and give a briefing to the volunteers on the morning. Any help would be much appreciated! Contact:
Clare Huckett
DOL Lead Organisation Project Manager
Gloucestershire Rural Community Council
15 College Green
Telephone: 01452 528491

Enid Smith Announces her Retirement
Enid Smith, Founder and Chief Executive Officer of IMPACT Alcohol & Addictions Services has announced her retirement after 11 years with the organisation. Enid will retire at the end of April but will continue to work part time. If you know of any opportunities coming up then give Enid a shout. Enid hopes to continue working in some form using her varied skills including Professional and Personal Life Coaching - specialising in pre & post redundancy/retirement, Counselling Supervision, Manager Support/Consultancy (especially CEO's in 3rd sector) etc. The CEO Post at IMPACT Alcohol & Addictions Services will be advertised shortly (look out for it in the newsletter). Email Enid at: enid@impactaas.co.uk and after 28 April enids1@tiscali.co.uk.

British Red Cross - Young Carers Project
The British Red Cross young carers' project was established in 2000.  The project supports young people aged 5 to 18 years who provide a caring role for a family member who is ill, disabled, suffers with mental health difficulties or has alcohol/ drug related issues.  It is estimated there are more than 900 young carers in Shropshire and their average age is 12.

The aim of the British Red Cross young carers' project is to give young carers an opportunity to take a break from their caring responsibilities at home and have some time out to enjoy a variety of activities such as arts, crafts, music, sports activities and trips.  Young carers also have access to advice and support.  One to one support is offered to all young carers. The young carers' project is organised into five areas:
?         Bridgnorth
?         Ludlow
?         Oswestry
?         Market Drayton
?         Shrewsbury
Groups meet every month in a variety of settings. As well as supporting young people through groups, the project has developed a secondary school PSHE session that it plans to deliver to all secondary schools in Shropshire, and this year is writing a PSHE session plan for primary schools.  The service also offers advice and guidance to school staff and delivers training. For more information contact:
Vanessa Turner, Young Carers Project Manager, British Red Cross
Phone: 01743 280071
Email: VTurner@redcross.org.uk

SIP Newsletter
The latest newsletter from the Shropshire Intrastructure Partnership is attached.
pdf15th_February_SIP_newsletter_issue_9 (359.99KB)

Community Organisers Programme - News Update
Information from Locality (the merged DTA/bassac organisation) on its successful bid to run the government's community organisers programme is available using the following link. This includes an 'Expression of Interest' form to become a community organiser or host. http://www.dta.org.uk/whatsnew/hottopics/communityorganisers.

The three Rs of volunteer rights and management (from VolResource)
The Volunteer Rights Inquiry, set up by Volunteering England, is asking all volunteer involving organisations to sign up to the "3R promise", which they are putting forward as a way to raise standards of volunteer management. The three Rs are based on: getting it Right from the beginning, ways to achieve Reconciliation if things go wrong, and accepting Responsibility. More details, a list of current supporters and a form to sign up are at: http://www.volunteering.org.uk/WhatWeDo/Policy/Volunteer+Rights+Inquiry.

Government minister's reasonableness test for council cuts (from VolResource)
The government minister for Communities and Local Government stated at NCVO's Annual Conference this week that he expects local authorities to behave reasonably in the way they manage their relationship with voluntary and community groups. Three tests of reasonableness are: not passing on disproportionate cuts, talk to sector groups at a very early stage about how services need to change, and at least three months' notice of funding changes.

Learning from across the sectors
A new 'How To' guide from chief executives body ACEVO seeks to increase understanding between the voluntary, private and public sectors and broaden experience and skills. 'Pushing at Open Doors: A Guide to Building Cross Sector Learning Relationships' can be downloaded from:

Carers Hub aimed at Commissioners (from VolResource)
A website created by The Princess Royal Trust for Carers and Crossroads Care is designed to support health and social care commissioners develop and deliver support for unpaid carers. The Carers' Hub "aims to inspire creative, inventive and cost-effective ways to deliver local and personalised carer support services". See: http://www.carershub.org.

Online source of surplus goods
Charity Giving World Online is promoting its solution for companies with surplus goods to pass them on to charities and community groups:

The role of effective relationships in public services
Research from Community Links based on a literature review looks at the difference that high quality relationships between front line professionals and clients can make to the outcomes in public services and shows how the quality of these relationships is essential to effective public service reform.

Is your campaign making a difference?
NVCO's Campaigning Effectiveness project has published the report 'Campaigning for change: Learning from the US' which "outlines a novel, systematic approach to evaluating campaigning which has emerged in the United States" - the Theory of Change Model. The guide follows the step by step process and draws out key implications for UK campaigners. Available for download via: http://www.ncvo-vol.org.uk/learningfromUS

2. Dates for Your Diary

Shropshire Disability Network Meeting - 10th March
The Disability Network is delighted to welcome the Leader of Shropshire Council, Keith Barrow, to talk about the impact of the Big Society on Shropshire. This should be of interest to every one of us who uses Services in Shropshire. Ann Johnson, Chair of the Employment Working Group will also give a presentation. Ann is an expert on the 2010 Equality Act, and will explain what it means for people with disability in Shropshire. Again, this is something that it is essential for us all to know. This year, Shropshire Disability Network is launching a number of new initiatives. These include
Walk and Roll 2011 - 10 April at the Quarry    
Shropshire Disability Awareness Day - 16 October Shrewsbury Sports Village
Shropshire Disability Challenge
To find out more about the work of the Disability Forum email or to find out how to get involved, Dave Hewetson, Secretary of Shropshire Disability Network: davidhewetson@talktalk.net

"CUT OFF" - 21 March
A joint round table discussion hosted by RAWM and the PCS Trade Union (representing national government workers including private sector deliverers) is being held to explore the impact of both public spending cuts on jobs, and changes in how and by whom services will be delivered. The event is designed to support partnership working between the VCS and public sector.
Date: Monday 21st March 2011
Time: 0930 - 1300 hrs
Venue: PCS Regional Office, Birmingham city centre
This is a free half day event, lunch provided. To secure your place, email Kate Gordon: katherineg@rawm.co.uk

Digital toolkit for community workers - 22 March
A digital toolkit for community workers 1 day workshop to be held at Reviive CIC in Shrewsbury 22 March 2011. At the end of this workshop you will have:
?         an overview of the social media landscape, and the strengths and weaknesses of the key tools
?         an understanding of how communities can and do use online tools like blogs, facebook pages and flickr
?         the skills to support volunteers to make use of these tools themselves
?         an understanding of how to use these tools for personal and professional development
?         an overview of some of the risks and how to mitigate them
To find out more visit: http://digitaltoolkitmar11.eventbrite.com/

Getting in the Press - 29 March
A half-day workshop on Getting your charity, social enterprise or community group in the press to be held at Reviive CIC in Shrewsbury on 29 March 2011. At the end of this workshop you will have:
?         A good understanding of what journalists believe to be newsworthy and what they don't.
?         A good understanding of what makes a story interesting and gives it legs.
?         The ability to prepare a punchy press release and how to get a good angle on stories from your business.
?         Knowledge of how to raise your profile locally, regionally and even nationally.
?         The skills to prepare a punchy press release and how to get a good "angle" on stories from your business.
To find out more visit: http://pressreleasefeb11.eventbrite.com/

Placed Based Interventions - Workshops
VCS Assembly members and other local VCS groups and organisations are invited to partnership led Placed Based Intervention stakeholder workshops:
North East Shrewsbury workshop 1,Thursday 10th March, 12noon-4.30pm  (focus: Family Poverty) contact Barbara Stafford-Cairns for more details - 01743 252019
Oswestry workshop 2,  Monday 28th March, 1pm-4.30pm (focus: Substance Misuse) contact Arren Roberts for more details - 01743 252016
Market Drayton workshop 1, Monday 4th April, 1.45pm-4.30pm (focus: Worklessness and NEETS) contact Fiona Boak for more details - 01743 255151
A date for Ludlow workshop 1 has not yet been determined, but is likely to take place in May 2011 (focus: Health inequalities).  contact Fiona Boak for more details - 01743 255151

The Big Society Debate - 30 March
The Big Society Debate organised by Shropshire Infrastructure Partnership is being held on Thursday 30 March at the Shropshire Education and Conference Centre. A flyer detailing the issues that will be covered and how to book is attached. Alternatively visit: http://shropshirevcs.org.uk/site/home/events/
pdfShropshire Big Society Debate (380.28KB)

VCS Annual Assembly - 7 April
An invitation to the 2011 Shropshire Voluntary and Community Sector Annual Assembly is attached. If you are able to attend please complete, detach and return the slip by Friday 1 April to:  Ruth Turner, Shropshire Partnership, Shirehall, Abbey Foregate, Shrewsbury SY2 6ND or alternatively email ruth.turner@shropshire.gov.uk
pdfVCS Annual Assembly Invite 2011 (118.68KB)

Sustaining Disability Organisations
Developing a Plan for the Future - Friday 8 April
Regional Disability Infrastructure Support Service Training. This is a free event. Key themes will cover:

  • Finance
  • Income streams
  • Commissioning & procurement
  • Partnership & clustering
  • Impact measurement

The event will last from 10.00am - 3.00pm. It will take place at The Engine House Visitor and Education Centre, Station Road, Highley, Shropshire WV16 6NP. For more details please see the attached poster and contact Sue on: 01691 774368 or   e-mail Rachael at:  admin@disabledholidayinfo.org.uk
pdfRDISS Training Poster DHI (77.67KB)

- 19th April 2011 
Shropcamp is a conference bringing together people working to deliver public services at a local level across Shropshire, Staffordshire and the UK. It is part of the family of localgovcamps taking place across the UK. It will look at how service providers (police, health service, councils, social enterprises and charities) can use open data and social media to deliver better services together. Shropcamp will also consider the rural dimension to these issues. People who have already used social media or open data to deliver excellent services will offer a workshop. To find out more visit:

3. Funding News
Nothing this time
Funding news provided by Gary Spence, External Funding Officer and Joe Bubb, Team Leader Funding & Programmes.

4. Consultations

Consultation on the advancement of amateur sport as a charitable aim
The Charity Commission, the regulator for charities in England and Wales, has a new consultation on when it is appropriate for organisations to adopt the advancement of amateur sports or games as a charitable aim and what can be done by charities to advance that aim for the public benefit. A key question is what may be needed to show that regularly playing games of mental skill or exertion promotes health. Deadline 31st May. http://www.charitycommission.gov.uk/Charity_requirements_guidance/Charity_essentials/Public_benefit/pbaas.aspx

5. Compact

Compact Champions Network Meeting
The next meeting of the Compact Champions Network has been planned for 2pm on Wednesday 23 March 2011. The meeting will consider the new National Compact, Public Sector changes and spending cuts, the role of Compact Champions and local Compact delivery. To book your place at the meeting please contact me, Sarah Dodds (01743 252740 or email sarah.dodds@shropshire.gov.uk).

Compact Representatives Needed
Are you interested in the Shropshire Compact? Would you be willing to act as a VCS Assembly representative on the Compact Implementation Group? The Compact Implementation Group is seeking two new VCS representatives to join the group and help take Compact implementation forward in 2011. The group meets approximately 5-6 times a year, with meetings lasting up to 2 hours at a venue in Shrewsbury. Travel expenses can be paid for volunteers. If you are willing to get involved please contact me Sarah Dodds (01743 252740 or email sarah.dodds@shropshire.gov.uk).

Compact Voice - 'Making Sense' Events
'Making Sense' are events designed to help you navigate what's happening at the intersection of government and the voluntary and community sector. The speaker list includes representatives from NAVCO, Voice for Change, NCVO, the Office for Civil Society, the Local Government Ombudsman, the National Audit Office as well as moderators from the Guardian, Third Sector and our Board. Plus local guest speakers. To find out more visit: www.compactvoice.org.uk/events

Compact Voice responds to Pickles
Compact Voice Chair, Simon Blake, has issued a statement following a speech by Secretary of State, Eric Pickles. See:



Compact Voice - Impact in 2010
Compact Voice has issued an impact report detailing the work that has taken place throughout 2010. To find out more and download a copy visit:
you would like to become a Compact Champion please email me, Sarah Dodds, sarah.dodds@shropshire.gov.uk or telephone 01743 252740.

Have you got a Compact story?
Email sarah.dodds@shropshire.gov.uk and share it with others.

6. Career Opportunities

Youth Association Vacancy
Youth Decide Participation Worker
JNC Pts 19 - 22 (£26,708 - £29,061) pa
Deadline: 11 March.
Please see the attached advert for full details.
pdfnew advert participation worker (23.56KB)

More career opportunities are advertised on the Shropshire Infrastructure Partnership website. Visit: www.ShropshireVCS.org.uk

7. Important Reminders

News Items

Pride of Shropshire Awards 2011

The search begins once again today for the "Pride of Shropshire" . . . people, communities or organisations that go the extra mile, without seeking reward, to make the county proud. This year, judges are again looking to crown an overall champion, who will be selected from the winners of nine individual categories. Please consider making a nomination. Visit the following web page for more information. http://pride.shropshirestar.com/

Oswestry and
Shropshire Citizen Advocacy - Volunteers needed
OSCA needs volunteers to support and represent people with learning difficulties throughout Shropshire. For more information please contact OSCA on 01691 671700 or e-mail admin@citizenadvocacyshropshire.org.uk.

Digital Switchover Grants Scheme

The Digital Switchover Help Scheme is available to support people who are:
?             are aged 75 or over; or
?             get or could get Disability Living Allowance, Attendance Allowance, Constant Attendance Allowance or mobility supplement; or
?             have lived in a care home for six months or more; or
?             are registered blind or partially sighted.
VCS groups and organisations in Shropshire interested in finding out more about the grants scheme can contact Clare Huckett at Gloucestershire Rural Community Council. Clare is the DOL Lead Organisation Project Manager. Email: clareh@grcc.org.uk. Phone: 01452 528491. There are a number of documents relating to the grants scheme so these will be made available on the VCS Assembly website from Tuesday 1st February see the latest news page at: www.2shrop.net/shropvcsassembly


Developing Your Brand and Image - 30 March, London
On the agenda:
* Bringing your brand and business strategy together
* When and how to re-brand
* Using brand to boost fundraising
* Checking the health of your brand
* Building brand communities online
* Using public perceptions to inform strategy
* Monitoring your brand online
* Crystallising your vision, mission and values
* Using mobile apps
* Getting staff onboard
Book a place at: http://www.charitycomms.org.uk/Brand_Conference

Knowledge and Nosh 2011
- FREE Breakfast Briefings
The Shropshire Infrastructure Partnership's Volunteering Team hosted by the Community Council of Shropshire have organised another programme of free breakfast briefings for 2011. The sessions run from 8.30 am - 10.30 am, breakfast is included and booking is essential. See details below:

Monitoring and Evaluation
Friday 11 March - Church Stretton, The Longmynd Hotel
Tuesday 15 March - Shrewsbury, Lord Hill Hotel
Contact: Lisa Darkin.
Telephone: 01743 342 177 or Email: lisa.darkin@shropshire-rcc.org.uk


Department for Communities and Local Government (CLG) Consultations
Proposals to introduce a Community Right to Challenge Closes 3 May 2011
Proposals to introduce a Community Right to Buy Closes 3 May 2011
Code of recommended practice for local authorities on data transparency  Closes 14 March

Please contact me if you have information you would like to share with Shropshire's voluntary and community groups and organisations.

 With best wishes

Sarah Dodds
VCS Assembly Coordinator
Telephone 01743 252740
Email: sarah.dodds@shropshire.gov.uk