Is Broadband a problem for you? ThinkingWISP could help
From Norfolk RCC
Monthly Project Update
May 2nd 2012
The Sustainable Funding Project provides tools and information to assist groups consider ways to diversify income and reduce overheads. It works with both frontline groups and those who support them. The project is led locally by Voluntary Norfolk and is delivered in partnership with Norfolk Rural Community Council and West Norfolk Voluntary and Community Action.
What’s been happening?• The Sustainable Sun Tool, an accessible and popular diagnostic tool to support business planning is being used by an increasing number of frontline groups. The project will be happy to facilitate the Sun Tool sessions which take on average one and a half hours to complete. Full feedback is then provided to enable action plans to be developed. Here is what one group said ~ “Many thanks for all this information. The evening was really useful and we thoroughly appreciated all that you both did.”• Copies of the Sun Tool are available electronically from the Sustainable Funding Project web pages on each of the partners’ websites. Hard copies can be obtained by contacting any of the project partners via SFP@voluntarynorfolk.org.uk, SFP@norfolkrcc.org.uk or SFP@westnorfolkvca.org.• This month we attach a brief note which sets out how, through experience, we have created a method of delivery for the Sun Tool which groups have found really beneficial.
What’s coming up?
• The project continues to meet directly with frontline groups and any group wishing to discuss issues around sustainability can contact the project via SFP@voluntarynorfolk.org.uk, SFP@norfolkrcc.org.uk or SFP@westnorfolkvca.org.
Sun Tool Explanation
The Needs Analysis Tool or Sun Tool exercise.
What is it all about?
The Needs Analysis Tool better known as “The Sun Tool” is used as an exercise which enables organisations to identify where they are now in each of six different areas which are integral to providing an effective operation.
The tool creates a visual snapshot of your organisations current levels of skill in six areas and thus can be used and revisited to identify and address any areas requiring development.
How is it best used?
Ideally, all of your board/committee/management team should take part in the exercise together, as the aim is to arrive at a consensus as to where your organisation has strengths and where development is required.
What form does the exercise take?
The Sun Tool focuses on six key areas and under each of the six areas provides five statements. Each statement carries a score and participants are asked to choose the statement which most closely reflects their personal view on the current position of their organisation. The score for each statement is then charted on the visual aid (a sun with a ray for each key area).
The score is higher the further away you are from the centre of the sun.
There is no strict format for the exercise, however as the intention is to firstly identify any differences in the perceptions of individual members of the board/committee/team and then secondly to discuss these differences to arrive at a consensus which can be used as the basis for development, the following format has proved successful:-
STEP 1: Participants are given their own sun tool to complete.
STEP 2: Addressing each of the six areas at a time, each participant is asked to state which statement/score they have chosen.
Once all the statements have been disclosed there then follows a constructive discussion between participants concerning any differences in their perceptions of the organisations current level of delivery for the area under review.
A consensus view will then be formed and charted on a “master sun tool”.
STEP 3: Repeat the process for each key area thus ending up with a completed sun tool which represents the consensus view of the whole group.
An action plan on how to develop the areas that need attention can then be based around this consensus master chart.
How long will this exercise take?
This depends on how large the group is but roughly speaking for a ten person group one and a half hours should be set aside.
Charitable Incorporated Organisations
The latest indicated timescale for implementation is March/April 2012. Initially it was suggested that groups with an income of less than £5000 could benefit from registration with the Charity Commission by becoming a CIO. However the Charity Commission has recently stated that it will not be able to consider applications from groups with incomes of less than £5000. At this stage and without further information this appears to be a matter of available resources at the Charity Commission.
Taking on the responsibilities of a building???
We have some guidance if you are thinking about getting more involved in your community facility get in touch with Tania at NRCC for a copy........ email@example.com
Full Cost Recovery
Voluntary organisations like their counterparts in the public and private sectors incur organisational overhead costs in addition to project costs. Full Cost Recovery means accounting for an organisation’s expenditure incorporating all costs incurred by the organisation, both overhead expenditure as well as project specific costs.
Full cost recovery is essential for ensuring that funding bids accurately cover all potential costs; contracts are negotiated for the full cost of delivering the service; and pricing for products and services fully reflect the cost to the organisation of producing or providing those goods.
Find out more about Full Cost Recovery by visiting <a href="http://www.fullcostrecovery.org.uk">www.fullcostrecovery.org.uk</a>
or <a href="http://www.ncvo-vol.org.uk/advice-support/funding-finance/financial-management/full-cost-recovery">www.ncvo-vol.org.uk/advice-support/funding-finance/financial-management/full-cost-recovery</a>
The Sustainable Sun Tool – a common sense approach to financial sustainability
The Sustainable Sun Tool is a quick, easy to use, helpful way to understand the things your organisation is already doing well - and which bits it could focus on to give it the best chances for success over the next few years.
With clear text and simple steps designed specially for small and medium sized groups, the Sustainable Sun Tool promotes focused, open debate about where your group has got to and where it wants to be.
Best used by the whole board and other key decision makers, the Sustainable Sun Tool is also useful to work through quietly on your own. The instructions are clear enough for it to work without any outside help at all. However, if you would prefer someone to help your group get to grips with it – that can be arranged too.
It is just one of the ways the Sustainable Funding Project can help to stave off those rainy days.
Hard copies are available from <a href="mailto:SFP@norfolkrcc.org.uk">SFP@norfolkrcc.org.uk</a> Copies can also be downloaded from: <a href="http://www.ncvo-vol.org.uk/advice-support/funding-finance/sustainable-funding/publications">www.ncvo-vol.org.uk/advice-support/funding-finance/sustainable-funding/publications</a>
The Sustainable Funding Project (Norfolk) is promoting tools developed by NCVO (National Council for Voluntary Organisations) and may be able to help with other development and training for your group.
Please contact the project using any of the three contact e-mail addresses below:-
<a href="mailto:SFP@norfolkrcc.org.uk">SFP@norfolkrcc.org.uk</a> <a href="mailto:SFP@westnorfolkvca.org">SFP@westnorfolkvca.org</a> <a href="mailto:SFP@voluntarynorfolk.org.uk">SFP@voluntarynorfolk.org.uk</a>
The Sustainable Funding Project (Norfolk) is a partnership between Voluntary Norfolk, Norfolk Rural Community Council, West Norfolk Voluntary & Community Action and NCVO. The project helps organisations to find new ways of raising money and to ensure resources are used effectively.