Scotland’s charity regulator is warning trustees of their “legal duties” in wake of the Oxfam sex abuse scandal.

New information posted on the Office of the Scottish Charity Regulator’s (OSCR) website says the Oxfam situation is particularly shocking “because the individuals involved have ultimately let down the very people the charity was meant to be helping and at one of the very worst times for that country.”

They have also let down the vast majority of individuals working in humanitarian relief who do so with “great passion and integrity”, OSCR said.

“The legal duty of all charity trustees is to act in the best interests of their charity and, in particular, to act with due care and diligence,” it states.

“For all charities, this means making sure that where they are working with vulnerable children and adults, they have the appropriate policies and procedures in place to make sure that everyone is kept safe. 

“Trustees should make sure that the policies are reviewed and kept up to date as organisations grow and change.”

OSCR also issued guidance to trustees to highlight, at their next meeting, the importance of safeguarding - keeping vulnerable beneficiaries, volunteers and staff safe - and keeping records of notifiable events.

 

Charities and other not-for-profit organisations with projects in Great Britain that improve health and wellbeing have until the end of February to submit their initial application.

The People’s Postcode Community Trust was established in 2014 to support marginalised groups in obtaining the skills and resources to effect change in their own communities. The Trust operates its own society lottery and receives all of its funding from players of People's Postcode Lottery.

The Trust provides short-term, designated funding for new projects, or significant expansions of existing projects, in Great Britain.

This year, the Trust will consider projects which improve health and wellbeing through:

  • Grassroots sports, arts and recreation projects that improve health and wellbeing.
  • Projects that improve the health of communities, through, for example, first aid courses, befriending, counselling or reducing isolation.Grants range from £500 to £20,000. Only registered charities can apply for grants of up to £20,000. The maximum grant for groups that are not formally registered as a charity is £2,000.
  • There is a two-stage application process.
  • The projects can be up to 12 months in length.

For further information follow: http://www.postcodetrust.org.uk/applying-for-a-grant

Charities and other not-for-profit organisations with projects in Great Britain that improve biodiversity and outdoor spaces have until the end of February to submit their initial application.

Established in 2015, the Postcode Local Trust provides grants to projects that are beneficial to local areas. It offers funding for outdoor projects related to play areas, green spaces, sustainable energy and conservation. Postcode Local Trust operates its own society lottery and receives all of its funding from players of People's Postcode Lottery.

This year the Postcode Local Trust is offering grants for local projects which support improve biodiversity and outdoor spaces such as:

  • Community gardens and play areas using sustainable materials.
  • Outdoor education and heritage.
  • Green energy projects and flood prevention.There is a two-step application process.Dealine for applications is 28th of February 

Grants range from £500 to £20,000. Only registered charities can apply for grants of up to £20,000. The maximum grant for groups that are not formally registered as a charity is £2,000.

For further information follow: http://www.postcodelocaltrust.org.uk/

I am pleased to inform you that the Scottish Government has launched a public consultation to explore electoral reforms which Scottish citizens may wish to see taken forward in future.

The Scottish Government is committed to increasing participation in elections both in terms of voter turnout and encouraging citizens to stand for election. Democratic participation for all challenges the inequalities of power and influence that exist in society, and an electoral system that supports and empowers the engagement of the Scottish people in their own elections plays a crucial role in this. The 2016-2017 Programme for Government included a commitment to take forward a consultation exercise to find out what electoral reforms Scottish citizens would like to see taken forward in future legislation.

We are keen to elicit views on a number of issues related to Local Government and Scottish Parliament elections, including: how often these elections should be held; who runs these and how they are run; who can register and vote; and who may stand for election.

We would welcome your comments as part of our consultation exercise. The consultation paper and online response system can be accessed using the following link: https://consult.gov.scot/elections/electoral-reform

If you wish to respond then please return the online questionnaire template by 12 March 2018.

If you have any questions, please feel free to get in touch with the Elections policy team at ElectionsTeam@gov.scot

We want to help bring about positive change for community and voluntary organisations involved with heritage in Scotland.

You may belong to a group or organisation that connects heritage with people – independent museums, historical societies, development or buildings trusts, community archaeology groups, clan societies and so forth. Or you may be an individual working on your own heritage-related project.

We are starting from the beginning. At the moment, there is no clear picture of who is doing what, and where, in Scotland. Finding this out will be the first step to deciding where to go next.

One outcome of this project could be to create the first community heritage network for Scotland.

We would like to hear from you, so please take a few minutes to fill out this survey, and sign up to join our database.

http://bit.ly/communityheritage

We appreciate that people engage with their heritage in many different ways, other than through formal community heritage groups, and we’d like to hear from all of you. Your information will be safe and we won’t share it with anyone else without your permission.
 We will be able to share the early outcomes of the survey at our discussion day:

Community Heritage Scotland – Going Forward on 3rd March in Perth. Please save the date in your diary!

You can find out more and register for this FREE event at:

https://communityheritagescotland.eventbrite.co.uk

We are a group of people and organisations connected in various ways to heritage in communities. Our initial steering group includes representatives from four community heritage organisations plus our funders and strategic supporters:

- Historic Environment Scotland
- Museums Galleries Scotland
- University of St Andrews 
- Association for Independent Museums 
- Archaeology Scotland
 

The project is being run by a combined team from Ergadia Museums &Heritage and Northlight Heritage, all specialists in community heritage projects.

Contact Robin Patel at info@ergadiaheritage.com for all queries about the survey.

 

 

 

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