Local charity shortlisted for national award

York – based charity Older Citizens Advocacy York has been shortlisted for the UK-wide Charity Governance Awards 2020, it was announced this week. It is in the running for the Improving Impact award which comes with a £5,000 unrestricted grant. Older Citizens Advocacy York is one of 21 charities from across the UK that complete the full shortlist.

Older Citizens Advocacy York joins a shortlist of charities engaged in a diverse range of activities that include health care, support for victims of domestic abuse, and education access for those experiencing disadvantage. The professional judging panel has shortlisted the entries and will select a winner in each of the seven categories. The winners will be announced on 21 May 2020 via a special online presentation from the historic Clothworkers’ Hall in London, which will include a ‘keynote’ from Becca Bunce (Co-Director of the IC Change Convention, feminist and disability advocate).

Newly-elected chair of trustees, Susan Hannon, and outgoing chair, Rachel Totton said: ‘ We are so proud of the work of the whole team – volunteers and staff – involved in delivering OCAY’s advocacy service to older people in our York community. Over the last few years, we have worked hard to further strengthen the excellent work of this much needed charity to make it sustainable for the future. This work has really paid off in terms of being able to continue to offer a service during the Covid-19 crisis. To receive recognition of our work on effective governance through being shortlisted for the award is a tremendous boost to us all’

Ruth Potter, Charity Manager commented, ‘I am very proud to be working for a Charity that can demonstrate the beneficial impact we have on the older people who work with us. We continue to support people by staying open and providing our service over the phone. Our volunteers are truly amazing.’

Michael Jarvis, who chairs the Awards for the organisers The Clothworkers’ Company, said, “Congratulations to all our shortlisted candidates – we are continuing to hear such inspiring stories from the sector. Of course, we are celebrating these successes from what feels like a different era; before the current coronavirus crisis hit.

“This is a difficult time for us all, but charities, often at the frontline of support for the most vulnerable members of our society, are currently facing a set of unprecedented challenges. Not only in how they carry out their day-to-day work, some are experiencing first-hand the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, but for others it’s a fight for their very existence as we simultaneously face an immense economic challenge in the coming months.

“But the creative, courageous and generous work of the voluntary sector during recent weeks has been a great source of light and positivity during this dark time. I hope that the stories from our shortlisted entrants provide a reminder of what we can achieve together, now and in the future.”

The novel coronavirus pandemic is affecting everyone, everywhere. Respecting the difficulties this is presenting to charities, communities and individuals – as well as the importance of supporting the Government’s social distancing restrictions – the ceremony cannot go ahead. But award partners wish to take an opportunity to shine a spotlight on good governance across the UK and hope to inspire and support the sector in the process. Therefore, the online awards presentation will occur on 21 May as scheduled, and details will be released to charity representatives and the public via the awards website and social media profiles as the day approaches.

The expert judging panel boasts a wealth of experience in charity governance and the voluntary sector. Judges include Tesse Akpeki (Lead consultant, Onboard), Rita Chadha (CEO, Small Charities Coalition), Sara Llewellin (Chief Executive, Barrow Cadbury Trust), Vinay Nair (Co-founder, Lightful), Dan Corry (CEO, New Philanthropy Capital), David Gold (Executive Chairman, Prospectus) and Janet Thorne (CEO, Reach Volunteering) among many other notable names. (See www.charitygovernanceawards.co.uk/judges for a full list of judges).

For the Charity Governance Awards, The Clothworkers’ Company – a City of London livery company that supports trusteeship initiatives – is partnered with not-for-profit consultancy NPC (New Philanthropy Capital), third sector recruitment specialists Prospectus, and trustee-matching charity Reach Volunteering.

You can follow the awards on Twitter via @CharityGovAward or by using the hashtag #CharityGov20. Winners will be announced on the website following the virtual ceremony in May – visit www.charitygovernanceawards.co.uk.