Small Charities Dialogue Day

Event Date

Thursday, 30th May 2019

9:30 am

Duration: Registration at 09:30 and proceedings between 09:45- 15:00 (with a lunch break 12:30-13:30)

Location: Main Hall, City of Edinburgh Methodist Church 

Topic: The successes and challenges of being a small charity working internationally in Scotland 

Invited speakers:  

  1. Ian Nicol, Malawi Development Programme Manager and Nicola Cogan, Malawi Development Officer, International Development Team, Scottish Government 

  1. Jennifer Ruddick, Deputy Programme & Policy Manager – Civil Society Team, Inclusive Societies Department, Department for International Development (DFID) 

  1. Sanjay Singh, Senior Programmes Manager – International Development and Environment, Peoples’ Postcode Lottery 

Why attend 

Join the Alliance for our first ever Small Charities Day on Thursday 30 May to discuss the successes and challenges of working internationally in Scotland. As a small charity working internationally in Scotland, what keeps you up at night? How can donors and potential funders make their policies and programmes more accessible and appropriate for small charities? How can the Alliance help you to find solutions to the problems you face with the ever-changing operating environment for charities working internationally? 

The day will be an opportunity to share your good news stories and hear about the experiences of three small charities who will give presentations about their organisations’ work. It will also be an opportunity to input your views into an open and facilitated dialogue with key donors including the Scottish Government, DFID and the People's Postcode Lottery, and to share with the Alliance your views on the challenges of the current operating environment. Finally, it will be an opportunity to network with other small charities across Scotland, learn from your peers about their practices and broker new connections with potential partners working in different contexts or countries. 

The challenges small charities face 

Scotland has more charities per head of the population than any other UK region. Small charities make up the greater part of the international development sector in Scotland. 70% of the Alliance’s current members have a turnover of under £500,000. Many small charities have no paid staff, or office, and are entirely run by volunteers.  Many of these charities were established to tackle just one cause or issue, often in one geographical area, and they work with little public awareness of these objectives.   

Small charities working internationally in Scotland face a challenging operating environment.  The 2018 OSCR report on Charities, Public Trust and Regulation reported that only 16% of the public trusted international charities completely, compared to 49% of the public who trust local charities completely. The same report stated that funding remains the single biggest issue for charities across Scotland, but small charities cited volunteer recruitment most often as a challenge.

Moreover, the widespread impacts of the safeguarding scandals which broke in February 2018 are still being felt across the sector, the new requirements of GDPR are time consuming for small staff or voluntary teams and Brexit has the potential to decrease charitable giving, reduce large funding streams available to Scottish charities and deplete reserves if inflation or exchange rates fluctuate.

Who is it for 

Please note that this event is designed for Alliance members who are charities across categories A-C and attendee numbers will be limited to ensure that we maximise the opportunities to have a meaningful discussion in an accessible space. 

This event is free for Alliance members. Not yet a Member? Find out how to join The Alliance or contact Catherine if you have any questions about membership. Non-members may join the event for a fee of £50.

Register For Event