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Even some charities are behaving abominably

Ed Selley

AVF Reviewer
From the 'article'

This is perverse decision. A charity robbing its staff to prop up profits and boost expansion.

At no stage in that diatribe does UNITE even mention that those 'profits' and 'expansion' would be furthering the scope and reach of a CHARITY (I'm not sure how much more obvious I can make this) to actually help people.
 

kav

Distinguished Member
It being a charity, who benefits from a situation like this?

(Edit: oops, had the window open for a while before replying, didn't see Ed's post)
 

la gran siete

Distinguished Member
From the 'article'



At no stage in that diatribe does UNITE even mention that those 'profits' and 'expansion' would be furthering the scope and reach of a CHARITY (I'm not sure how much more obvious I can make this) to actually help people.

thats right, dramatically cut staff wages and employment rights to boost profits.Time for a strike me thinks.I am all in favour of TP doing the work it does but NOT at the expense of its own staff who will simply lack the incentive to go about their work if their pay and conditions are being undermined
 
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Ed Selley

AVF Reviewer
thats right, dramatically cut staff wages and employment rights to boost profits.Time for a strike me thinks

What does a charity do with profits?

A union is upset that a charity is focussing (in terrible economic times remember- you keep telling us this) on helping people rather than maintaining overtime rates. I know your ability to digest information from the internet remains poor but come on- you really can't see the other side of this one?
 

Jamezinho

Distinguished Member
Simple stuff, this.
 

karkus30

Banned
Ed Selley said:
From the 'article'

At no stage in that diatribe does UNITE even mention that those 'profits' and 'expansion' would be furthering the scope and reach of a CHARITY (I'm not sure how much more obvious I can make this) to actually help people.

I don't think its that at all. They are just one more, mostly tax funded business that is having to restructure in the recession. The country is full of these third sector companies that rely on state handouts.

What is interesting is that a charity has resorted to this. Its an unusual step, but no doubt funding cuts, a down turn in donations and general cost increases have forced them to abandon the operational style of public sector organisations. They have the same terms and conditions as public sector organisations but are effectively private sector companies and have to be managed like private sector companies. There are no bail outs for them, if they fail to manage their budgets the company goes bust. It might be they now need to change their entire business model.
 
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Deleted member 293381

Guest
Gone are the days of charities being run by volunteers for the good of the unfortunate.

These days charities are run on business lines. Charity directors and senior staff do very nicely - big fat salaries, expensive cars and holidays. Nice one if you can get it.

Down every high street in every town there they are - no boarding-up or empty run-down offices for these businesses. The coffers are full.

The unions are right to try and get their fingers in the pie and a slice of the action.
 

karkus30

Banned
la gran siete said:
thats right, dramatically cut staff wages and employment rights to boost profits.Time for a strike me thinks.I am all in favour of TP doing the work it does but NOT at the expense of its own staff who will simply lack the incentive to go about their work if their pay and conditions are being undermined

Actually your half right. After several years working amongst the third sector I know there are always people at the top that do remarkably well running that style of business. Make no mistake, it is a business. They won't make 'more profits' as such, but they will be protecting the business in order to keep themselves employed. They will have been forced to this point by circumstances. It might be that they are not considered big enough for future contracts and have had to figure a way of restructuring in order to encompass a wider area in order to comply with new funding rules.
 

la gran siete

Distinguished Member
Gone are the days of charities being run by volunteers for the good of the unfortunate.

These days charities are run on business lines. Charity directors and senior staff do very nicely - big fat salaries, expensive cars and holidays. Nice one if you can get it.

Down every high street in every town there they are - no boarding-up or empty run-down offices for these businesses. The coffers are full.

The unions are right to try and get their fingers in the pie and a slice of the action.

is it no wonder that people are less reluctant to make donations.They should never be businesses in the accepted sense
 

karkus30

Banned
Alan CD said:
Gone are the days of charities being run by volunteers for the good of the unfortunate.

These days charities are run on business lines. Charity directors and senior staff do very nicely - big fat salaries, expensive cars and holidays. Nice one if you can get it.

Down every high street in every town there they are - no boarding-up or empty run-down offices for these businesses. The coffers are full.

The unions are right to try and get their fingers in the pie and a slice of the action.

Sort of. Just like any business it has to survive and that often means change and in the case of third sector companies the wind can change direction very quickly because of the reliance on very few funding sources. I doubt its being restructured to pay any more out to the owners and senior staff, probably just survival.
 

la gran siete

Distinguished Member
Actually your half right. After several years working amongst the third sector I know there are always people at the top that do remarkably well running that style of business. Make no mistake, it is a business. They won't make 'more profits' as such, but they will be protecting the business in order to keep themselves employed. They will have been forced to this point by circumstances. It might be that they are not considered big enough for future contracts and have had to figure a way of restructuring in order to encompass a wider area in order to comply with new funding rules.

oddly enough I feel 100% right, maybe its you who is 50% wrong
 

karkus30

Banned
la gran siete said:
is it no wonder that people are less reluctant to make donations.They should never be businesses in the accepted sense

No other way to do them. How do you operate a service if you have no money ? You make donations through the tax you pay, that's how they are generally funded. Public/private partnerships again. They generally just pay less than the public sector, but because they are budgeted through funding dependent on performance ( as are GP surgeries by the way ) they are trapped in a small pool of limited resource and with a very limited capacity to evolve as a real, private sector business would. Some of the staff at the charities I worked with were on £30K per year plus all the side benefits of a public sector organisation, but the funding is being cut back.
 

karkus30

Banned
la gran siete said:
oddly enough I feel 100% right, maybe its you who is 50% wrong

Nope, I worked in one and with many different third sector providers. I have intimate knowledge of how they work by having to run one as the chief exec.
 
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Deleted member 293381

Guest
Sort of. Just like any business it has to survive and that often means change and in the case of third sector companies the wind can change direction very quickly because of the reliance on very few funding sources. I doubt its being restructured to pay any more out to the owners and senior staff, probably just survival.

Don't get me wrong - charities do good work. I know because close friends worked for a charity for 7 years and many times I visited them in their plush air-conditioned and fully carpeted offices in the centre of town. They worked hard and did good things for their excellent salaries.

However, the cost of running these plush offices and well-paid staff much be huge compared to how it was in the 'old days', where a bunch of volunteers were organised from a single poorly-lit backstreet office with lino flooring and a coal fire.

I wonder what percentage of the donations go to the upkeep of the charity business these days?
 

Sonic67

Banned
If a charity strikes how is that going to affect the country?
 

BomoLad

Well-known Member
Don't get me wrong - charities do good work. I know because close friends worked for a charity for 7 years and many times I visited them in their plush air-conditioned and fully carpeted offices in the centre of town. They worked hard and did good things for their excellent salaries.

However, the cost of running these plush offices and well-paid staff much be huge compared to how it was in the 'old days', where a bunch of volunteers were organised from a single poorly-lit backstreet office with lino flooring and a coal fire.

I wonder what percentage of the donations go to the upkeep of the charity business these days?

Well, why would that be a problem. Just because it's a charity it doesn't exclude them from costs such as rent, staffing costs, electricty and utility bills, maintenance, stationary and all the rest of it.

How else do we think it works? Charities don't get all this for free. And how effective would charity work be if it relied solely on people volunteering in their spare time. There are many full-time professional charities run the same way as any other business in many ways.
 
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Deleted member 293381

Guest
Well, why would that be a problem. Just because it's a charity it doesn't exclude them from costs such as rent, staffing costs, electricty and utility bills, maintenance, stationary and all the rest of it.

How else do we think it works? Charities don't get all this for free. And how effective would charity work be if it relied solely on people volunteering in their spare time. There are many full-time professional charities run the same way as any other business in many ways.

I wonder what percentage of the donations go to the upkeep of the charity business these days?
 

karkus30

Banned
Alan CD said:
Don't get me wrong - charities do good work. I know because close friends worked for a charity for 7 years and many times I visited them in their plush air-conditioned and fully carpeted offices in the centre of town. They worked hard and did good things for their excellent salaries.

However, the cost of running these plush offices and well-paid staff much be huge compared to how it was in the 'old days', where a bunch of volunteers were organised from a single poorly-lit backstreet office with lino flooring and a coal fire.

I wonder what percentage of the donations go to the upkeep of the charity business these days?

It depends on the charity. Its a business so everyone is different. They are also in competition with other charities. What's more, when you realise that the staff actually have to have the skills to do the job, it suddenly looks less like a few people handing out some soup and far more like a quasi-professional business. You need transport, phones, laptops. You have to record and file every intervention and prepare detailed reports, bids and spreadsheets for your benefactors. The skills needed say for business support are usually those of an ex company director or high level manager. Those for mental health will often be medical. Both need high level soft skills. To run that you need good people in HR, Financial, Sales, Marketing. All of those people want good working conditions and a reasonable salary.

Running a large charity is no different to running any other large business.

Really they are just more crony capitalist business depending on tax payer hand outs plus any other contributions they can scrape in. They function for a purpose and that purpose defines the look of feel of the business. So you can still get your one room charities, but they don't work when the intention is to work intensely with thousands of clients spread around a wide area with the necessity of conforming to all the quality standards, recording and data protection etc. its big business and as such the offices often announce how big it is.
 

BomoLad

Well-known Member
I wonder what percentage of the donations go to the upkeep of the charity business these days?

Well that'd depend on the charity, how big they are, how many people they employ, which part of the country they're based in and many other things. May as well ask how soon after purchasing a bunch of bananas does a family eat them all. It would depend on how ripe they are, how many they bought, how many members of the family they are and how hungry those in the family might be.
 

karkus30

Banned
Alan CD said:
I wonder what percentage of the donations go to the upkeep of the charity business these days?

Often there isn't any donations. Maybe a patron. Different models, different structures, different emphasis. Try and get money out of the Government if you are running a tin pot outfit from a garden shed. Its often about image. The Government look for a strong, well run business that exudes their aspirations just like you or I do. If you take your car to a garage that turns out to be a lean too in a run down area with a couple of screwdrivers and a hammer lying on the floor, then you are probably going to be less than confident that the job will be done to your satisfaction. A plush garage with professional technicians and a well lit workshop bulging with diagnostic equipment and neat tool chests is far more inspiring.
 
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Deleted member 13294

Guest
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BomoLad

Well-known Member
Ooh this is going to be fun. It will be a fantastic PR coup for the unions if they manage to bring down a charity.... :rolleyes:

Not sure what you think they are supposed to do LGS. Charities are struggling, and are set to continue to have problems with their finances.

26% of donors expect to reduce giving this year, says CAF survey | UK Fundraising

But then, you always were a fan of the magic money tree.

It's the union's job to promote the interest of the workers. Why would this change because the organisation is a charity?
 
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Deleted member 13294

Guest
It's the union's job to promote the interest of the workers. Why would this change because the organisation is a charity?

So the union would best serve its purpose by bringing down a charity, or curtailing its ability to meet its charitable aims?
 
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Deleted member 293381

Guest
This might be of interest:

BBC News - Charity donations down 20%, says UK Giving 2012 report

This gives some idea of percentage:

What percentage of donations go to charity?

There are some sites which suggest, in real terms, that about 90% of donations are spent on the business (programs, adverts, admin, fund raising etc) and about 10% actually went towards the people in need.

Many charities give no money at all, all the funds incoming feed well-qualified staff who provide helpful advice.

I notice that charity sites provide no clear indication of input/output breakdown. Lots of flowery prose but very little info.
 

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