The week on the web

A chance to catch up on news from the past seven days. For the stories in full go to


- Charity leaders losing confidence in finances

Charity leaders' confidence in third sector finances has fallen sharply in the past three months, according to an NCVO survey. Results from the Charity Confidence Survey, a quarterly poll of 120 chief executives, show that confidence in the financial health of the voluntary sector has dropped by 21 percentage points - 78 per cent of respondents in the most recent survey said they thought that the sector economy would get worse in the coming year. Stuart Etherington, chief executive of the NCVO, said this pessimism was fed by concerns about the impact of government policies. Meanwhile, the NCVO has established a commission to look at the state of funding for the third sector after 2010.

- Milburn backs statutory powers for the Compact

Former Cabinet minister Alan Milburn has called for a Community Empowerment Act to give statutory force to the Compact and consolidate the sector's role in public service delivery. Milburn said the new law should give voluntary organisations the right to bid for any tendered public service, make three years the normal length of contracts and enshrine the right of the sector to campaign. Speaking at Acevo's Chief Executives Summit on 12 June, Milburn - who was health secretary in Tony Blair's government - said these changes would give substance to good intentions and put public service delivery and community regeneration on a sure footing.

- Media Trust awarded more funding for Community Channel

The Office of the Third Sector has given the Media Trust £2.4m to spend on its Community Channel. Speaking at the trust's annual reception on 11 June, chairman Andy Duncan announced the new funding, which comes alongside £300,000 from the Vodafone UK Foundation and voluntary charity v for the channel's youth programme, Change. Duncan also announced that the BBC had sent three members of staff to work on secondment for the trust: Daren Forsyth, Chloe Davies and Dominic Cotton.


- Sector prominent in honours list

Barbara Stocking, chief executive of Oxfam, Hilary Blume, founder of Card Aid, and Julia Cleverdon, vice president of Business in the Community, are among the 959 people to have been recognised in the Queen's Birthday Honours list this year. Of those honoured, 41 per cent were women - a record high.

- Scottish review of charitable status delayed

The Office of the Scottish Charity Regulator has delayed until October the latest stage of its 'rolling review' of charitable status. It says it needs more time to consider contentious issues such as the levels of fees charities should be allowed to charge.

- Comic Relief sets up comms department

Comic Relief has created a new communications department to provide all of the charity's creative output. The division, described by Comic Relief as an "in-house ideas lab", will cover broadcast, print, digital and experience-based communications.

- UnLtd's Dodds killed in cycling accident

Sarah Dodds, director of ventures at social entrepreneurship support organisation UnLtd, has died as a result of injuries sustained in a cycling accident while on holiday in France. Before joining UnLtd, Dodds worked at homelessness charity Crisis and before that at management consultancy firm Accenture.


A social enterprise is inviting consumers to take the Tap Challenge and see if they can tell the difference between tap water and "£5-a-bottle imported Himalayan rainwater". Tap, launched last week, is also marketing a do-it-yourself bottled water kit, complete with stickers, in a bid to challenge bottled water companies and encourage people to refill their bottles.

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