This is clearly a good week to be in Northern Ireland. The Northern Ireland Council for Voluntary Action's annual conference, Building Tomorrow's World, takes place in Belfast on 7 December. With a survey showing 81 per cent of households in Northern Ireland fairly or very concerned about the environment - key issues include climate change, waste and traffic fumes - the event has a green theme with transatlantic leanings. Al Gore's film An Inconvenient Truth will be shown, and the guests will include Jerry Greenfield of Ben & Jerry's ice cream. Nicva also has a range of training events this week, such as It's Better With The Lights Off and Bin There, Done That, on cutting energy costs and voluntary sector recycling. For more details, go to www.nicva.org.
Timely, fun, photogenic and doable - good lessons for any event. On 9 December, Londonderry hosts a fundraising world record attempt by four local charities - Macmillan Cancer Support, Foyle Hospice, Children in Crossfire and Inishowen Children's Autism Related Education - to have at least 10,001 Santas walk round the city walls. See www. 10001santas.com.
To cut costs and improve efficiency, Nicva developed its Community Buyer site, which lists firms wanting to do business with the voluntary sector and, crucially, encourages charities to give feedback and ratings on the companies. More details at www.communitybuyer.org.
In London, meanwhile, the big question is "how can we collaborate to transform our sector and our services so we are stronger, more successful and sustainable?" NCVO's Collaborative Working event on 10 December is a chance to explore the issues and learn more about sharing support services or the legal and financial implications of collaborating. See www. ncvo-vol.org.uk/events/latest for further details.
On Friday on BBC Radio 4 a new series of media-focused and often cause-concerned The Message begins, with presenter Jenni Murray. Items upcoming include the future of speech radio and - oft-debated in charity circles - who really benefits from reality TV.
- Contact Nick Cater at email@example.com.