Finance: Funding seminars hit the road

The Finance Hub is launching a set of briefings and holding seminars around the UK in a bid to help public sector funders understand how to work better with third sector organisations.

The briefing documents have been written by staff at Acevo, who contributed papers on full cost recovery and surer funding, and representatives from the Development Trusts Association, who wrote about the clawback of funds, asset transfer and state aid restrictions.

Hard copies of the briefings are being sent to a selected list of 2,300 funders in local government and quangos.

The UK's 100 top charitable foundations will also receive the mailings.

The one-day seminars, which are being held in York, Preston, London, Birmingham, Melton Mowbray and Taunton, will include speakers from the Treasury, the Home Office, the Department for Communities and Local Government and various UK regional development agencies.

David Hunter, policy officer at Acevo, described the scheme as "a good, practical initiative that aims to get down to the grass-roots level with local funders.

"Helping charities to achieve something like full cost recovery is a two-way process, and it doesn't work if the funders don't understand it. These briefings are short, concise and user-friendly, and are all about targeting a very particular audience and improving understanding."

Tony Rich, asset development adviser at the DTA, explained the need for an asset transfer briefing. "There is enormous potential for land and property that is owned by local authorities to be donated to the third sector, so they can develop independent income streams and move away from grant funding," he said.

"We need to tackle the barriers to handing over assets - there are a few examples of asset transfer we can point to at the moment, but there is also a lot of untapped potential."

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