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The nfpSynergy Blog

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2017 predictions

Four predictions for how the outside world will buffet charities in 2017

As one of the most tumultuous years in recent history draws to a close, we've been thinking about what charities should expect in 2017. What will Brexit, Trump, rising oil prices and various domestic issues mean for the sector? Discover our predictions in this week's blog.

6 December 2016
Random control trial

Random Control Trials for charities - another false dawn for evaluation?

The RCT is often considered the gold standard for a clinical trial - but can this methodology be applied successfully in the charity sector for impact and evaluation measurement? Joe Saxton explores the challenges and complexities of trying to replicate this method.

30 November 2016
disabled access

Campaigns that are challenging public perceptions about disability

With the support of charities, disabled people have gained legislative successes over the last two decades; but misinformed and problematic perception of disability persists. We reflect on campaigns shaking things up and challenging the way able-bodied people might think about disability in this week's blog.

23 November 2016
Brexit Trump

How should charities respond to Brexit and Trump-in?

2016 has been a year of political and social upheaval on an unprecedented scale. What do Brexit and the election of Donald Trump say about the divisions in our society? And most importantly - what can we learn, and how can charities help to heal the divide?

16 November 2016
National Trustee Survey nfpSynergy

Twenty things we learned from our National Trustee Survey

We carried out our national trustee survey in September this year working with Third Sector magazine and the Charity Futures programme. We got nearly 550 responses and some preliminary results were published last month. Here are twenty nuggets of information we gleaned from the survey.

9 November 2016
Gift Aid

What’s doing a Gift Aid claim for a small charity really like? Eight nuggets from the frontline

From trying to obtain an HMRC Gift Aid reference to getting your head around which donations are eligible - claiming Gift Aid can be a daunting and time consuming process, especially for small volunteer run organisations. Joe Saxton shares his experience of the process, complete with useful insights, tips and tricks (some with varying results!)

1 November 2016
Charity Shopping Online

Charity shops: Is the future online?

The success of online shopping cannot be contested - a fifth of all non-food items and over a quarter of all clothes are sold online in the UK, and the worth of our e-commerce market has increased significantly every year since 2014. This week's blog asks - where do charities come in to this, and what can they learn from online retailers? Is the future of charity shopping online?

26 October 2016
Alpha Bravo Charlie

As easy as Alpha, Bravo, Charlie… How to communicate better with your supporters

The majority of the British public who currently give to charity plan on giving the same amount (or more) over the next 12 months; but will this always be the case? And how can charities ensure they remain on good terms with supporters amidst looming change in the world of charity fundraising?

19 October 2016
Donald Trump rally

Donald Trump and the problem with celebrity foundations

It's not unusual for people to loathe politicians; it is remarkable, however, that this year's US presidential race has managed to cause reputational harm to the charity sector, and celebrity charitable foundations in particular. This week's blog asks - how many more celebrity charitable foundations do we need? Is it time for celebrities to resist the trend of starting their own foundations, and simply donate to trusted established charities instead?

12 October 2016
nfpSynergy facts and figures free report

Facts and Figures - Public's Favourite Causes 2016

  • What is the most popular cause in the UK?
  • Which cause attracts the largest proportion of individual donations?
  • Which causes are gaining in popularity, and which are going down?

Discover answers to these and more questions in this free report

7 October 2016
Making a Difference

Is it my job to change the world, and who is going to help?

This week's blog explores how responsibility for social and environmental issues is distributed between citizens, government and business; whose job is it to make a positive difference in a problematic society?

29 September 2016
Westminster Parliament

Working in constituencies is the key to influencing MPs

Westminster has become a crowded environment for charities, with numerous organisations campaigning and competing for MPs' time. Compounding this, our latest research reveals that just under 1/4 of Conservative MPs state that charities should not campaign in parliament. So how can charities best navigate this difficult landscape and get their voices heard by key decision makers?

20 September 2016

All for one and one for all - why should charities engage families?

Families are a valuable pool of support, but they are often neglected when charities are looking for potential supporters. Find out how and why your charity could benefit from engaging this valuable support group.

13 September 2016

5 ways to make the most of online community research

We’re constantly developing and refining the research methods we use in order to continue to deliver high quality insight for charities. In December last year, we piloted the use of online communities for market research in the not-for-profit sector; now we reflect on what we've learned and explore different ways charities can use online communities to optimum effect.

6 September 2016
Toy car

It's not you, it's me: the decline in popularity of the children's sector

The children and young people charity sector has seen a marked decline in popularity over the past few years. Our latest blog explores contextual factors and public perceptions affecting this sector; what, if anything, can individual charity brands do to restore a favourable view? 

1 September 2016

Too much of a good thing? The challenges of leveraging one-off donations

Volunteering in 2013 for the UK office of an overseas health charity operating in Haiti, I couldn’t have imagined that the experience was going to be so thought provoking!

25 August 2016

Micro-volunteering: worth the hype?

Micro-volunteering has been heralded as a way to benefit a worthy cause on your own terms to suit your lifestyle with ‘absolutely no commitment’. I decided to try this out and see if I could make a difference micro-volunteering at short notice, without leaving the comfort of my own home.

12 August 2016
your image here

It’s time for the Olympics to have official charity partners

In the words of the International Olympic Committee (IOC), “The goal of the Olympic Movement is to contribute to building a peaceful and better world”.

Indeed, in many ways last week’s opening ceremony for the Rio 2016 Olympic Games was a great celebration of humanity.

10 August 2016

How can small charities fundraise in a world dominated by the big fish?

Individual giving is the largest source of fundraising income for charities.

3 August 2016
young people pier

What can Young People Bring to the (Board) Table?

Young people are the most likely to volunteer, yet they make up only 0.5% of trustees. How can charities address this?


The age gap on trustee boards

27 July 2016

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