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VAS id: news, events & information from
Swindon's voluntary & community sector
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VAS information digest

11th March 2016
In this week's VAS id:
Training in online fundraising and being an effective trustee, room hire at VAS, funding opportunities from the Burden Trust, Children's Health Fund and Discovery Grants, a vacancy at Community First, an online course introducing the voluntary sector, and more information about the Community Fair at TWIGS.

Latest News


Community Fair: 16th March at TWIGS

This year's Community Fair will be held at TWIGS Community Gardens on 16th March 2016 from 11am to 3pm. The fair will present a great opportunity to meet a wide range of groups in Swindon all of which provide key services to support both individuals and families.

Groups attending include:

The Cinnamon Trust which seeks to relieve the anxieties, problems, and sometimes injustices, faced by elderly and terminally ill people and their pets, thereby saving a great deal of human sadness and animal suffering.

Reach Inclusive Arts which aims to develop and nurture an arts culture involving disabled people in artistic and cultural life through accessible activities.

Developing Health & Independence which help people out of the cycle of homelessness, social isolation and drug or alcohol abuse, offering them a wide range of services that help them gain control of their lives again and live independently.

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Room Hire at VAS

If you are looking for space to hire in the town centre - for meetings, conferences, training courses or workshops - get in touch with us. VAS can offer a range of meeting spaces, from large conference rooms to one-to-one meeting rooms and hot desk facilities, at both our John Street and Sanford Street locations. Email info@vas-swindon.org or call us on 01793 538 398.

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Introducing the Voluntary Sector

A new short online course, ‘Introducing the Voluntary Sector,’ has been produced by the Open University and can be undertaken at no charge via OpenLearn. It covers the context and features of voluntary and community organisations, with topics such as sector structure and history, funding issues, understanding stakeholders and beneficiaries. A second course, ‘Working in the Voluntary Sector,’ will be available later this year.

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Upcoming Training


The Effective Trustee

This course will help attendees understand the framework within which charities operate, examine the responsibilities of trustees individually and collectively, look at charity constitutions and how they affect the Board, and explore relationships on the Board and with the charity’s staff and volunteers. The course takes the form of a presentation by Jane Butler from Voluntary Action Swindon and exercises, with plenty of time for questions.

When: Tuesday 12th April, 9:30am - 1pm
Where: Voluntary Action Swindon, 1 John Street, SN1 1RT

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Improve Your Success at Online Fundraising

On one hand, crowdfunding is as old an idea as rattling a tin in the marketplace. Today, however, the word has assumed a new meaning. The term is now more usually associated with the activity of raising funds online.

This training course from GlobalGiving UK will help you to understand the basic mechanics of fundraising online, develop a precise strategy and action plan, and expand your donor base.

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Purchase Tickets

Sector Vacancies


Head of Finance at Community First

Community First are looking to appoint a highly experienced and dynamic finance professional to support the Chief Executive and the Board through the next phase of growth and development of the organisation. The Head of Finance is a key post within the organisation and is also the Company Secretary.

The ideal candidate will be a qualified accountant, good team player committed to the charity sector. You will have the ability to bring strategic financial management to multiple and complex areas of work. A recent working knowledge of charity finance is essential.

Job Title: Head of Finance
Hours: 22.5 Hours per week
Salary: circa £35,000 – £40,000 per annum pro rata, depending on experience plus 7% pension contribution
Location: Devizes
Closing Date: Friday 1st April

Apply Now

Funding Opportunities


The Burden Trust

The Burden Trust is a South West (Bristol) based charitable trust that offers grants to voluntary and community organisations in the UK.

Funding is intended to support agencies undertaking projects to benefit those in need, including: schools and training institutions; homes and care for the young; medical research; hospitals; retirement homes; and other charitable work which helps people in need.

Grants are usually awarded up to £5,000. Larger grants are occasionally awarded. Applications should be received by 31 March to be considered at the annual Trustees meeting each June.

Apply Now


Children's Health Fund

Do you have an idea for how drinking water in public spaces could be made more accessible for children and young people? The Children’s Health Fund is offering grant funding for grants between £500 to £5,000 to projects that have innovative ideas that will promote or provide access to drinking water in public spaces that children and young people gather to learn, play or congregate.

Apply Now


Discovery Grants

Discovery Grants of up to £5,000 are available to fund an activity which supports one or more of these three priority themes: improving knowledge and insight; developing skills and experience; and innovative solutions to social challenges.

Grants must directly benefit disadvantaged people in the UK and must be for something that is wholly charitable. Funding is available to cover part time salaries, equipment or materials but is for one year and must deliver a local project.

Apply Now

Do you have something to share? Let us know what your charity or community group is up to and we'll feature it in VAS id. Send through news items, upcoming events, training courses, funding opportunities and vacancies to vasid@vas-swindon.org
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Voluntary Action Swindon is registered charity no. 287732.