NCVO pledges to be more outspoken for the sector and less London-centric

The National Council for Voluntary Organisations has pledged to be less “London-centric” and will “focus on banging the drum” for charities and volunteering. 

In a blog post, Karl Wilding, the charity’s chief executive, said the umbrella body had spent the past year gathering views from members to come up with a new strategic direction. 

He said more than 1,000 organisations had shared their thoughts on the future for charity and volunteering and almost all of them had said the sector’s role was being overlooked. 

“We want to change that,” he wrote. “Working alongside our members, NCVO will have a much clearer focus on banging the drum about the huge difference made by charities and volunteering. 

“This will require a sustained push to begin a more substantive national conversation. 

“We’ll work tirelessly to make sure that both the public and decision-makers value the essential role that charities and volunteers play – and the potential to achieve more.”

Wilding said the organisation wanted to develop a new relationship with members that would redefine its role in the sector. 

“We are proud of our leading role in the sector, but we want to shift the power dynamic that is implicit in this,” he said. 

“The insider-outsider debate has run throughout NCVO’s history, but we recognise that insider approaches are not inclusive of all voices.  

“NCVO can and should play a role in amplifying voices, as well as opening the door for others to take seats at the decision-making table.

Wilding said influence and connection should not just be for people working in large organisations or those based in London. 

“We are determined to match our national reach with local engagement – and be less London-centric,” he said. 

He said members had told the consultation they wanted the NCVO to work closely with other sector bodies, which he promised to work on. 

“During Covid-19 we have worked together like never before, with a common interest of putting frontline charities and volunteering first,” he said. “We want to build on this.”

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