Chairs and Governance Roundup – September 2022

This Chairs and Governance Roundup is a collection of recent resources, news, and upcoming events for Board Members of local Age UKs.

Welcome to the latest edition of our Chairs and Governance Roundup, a collection of recent resources, news, and upcoming events for Board Members of local Age UKs. Read on for details of some useful webinars from the NCVO, the upcoming Live Longer Better event, as well as some learning and resources from the National Lottery Community Fund’s Ageing Better programme.


Trustees’ Week 7 to 11 November

Trustees’ Week celebrates the achievements of the 1 million charity trustees in the UK and this year’s theme is “making a difference in changing times”. Throughout the week you’ll have the chance to connect with other trustees to share your experiences. You’ll also be able to develop your skills through our wide range of events, training and guidance.

For more information and resources, please visit: www.trusteesweek.org.

During Trustees’ Week NCVO is running a series of webinars, find out more here.


Live Longer Better – face to face event 19th October

The Live Longer Better movement promotes the 4 R’s: reconditioning, rejuvenation, risk reduction and revolution with the aim of enabling people to do just that: live longer better.

All Age UKs are invited to join the first in-person Live Longer Better national event where the programme will reaffirm its collective mission.

Find out more about the event by clicking this link.

Learn more about Live Longer Better here.


Learning and Resources from the Ageing Better Programme

The National Lottery Community Fund’s Ageing Better programme was a seven-year, £87 million programme designed to test different ways of improving the lives of people over 50 by addressing social isolation and loneliness within local communities. The programme was delivered by 14 place-based partnerships across England.

In this article, Ruth Bamford, Learning Lead for Ageing Better at The National Lottery Community Fund, shares below some of the impact from their Ageing Better programme, as well as highlighting the importance of delivering a person-centred approach when addressing loneliness and social isolation.

Click here to view the full article.


Age UK Influencing Conference 2022 “Getting through a difficult winter”


You can now sign up here to attend this year’s Age UK Influencing Conference on Wednesday 12th October 2022! We are welcoming staff, volunteers and trustees from across the Age UK Network and multiple attendees from the same local Age UK are welcome and encouraged.

This year’s conference will be looking at the challenges older people (and the local Age UKs supporting them) face, and sharing ideas, evidence and practical ways to improve their lives. We’ll hear from local Age UKs and policy experts on topics such as the cost of living crisis, digital exclusion, tackling health inequalities through targeted approaches to black and minority ethnic older people, and working with ICSs, sharing tips from across the network. We will also consider the very difficult winter ahead for local Age UKs, as energy prices soar, and what we can do to help through our influencing activity.

Click here to book your place.


Building good governance – short online sessions for trustees

NCVO run a series of online training events specifically for trustees covering topics such as:

  • Trustee basics
  • Financial intelligence for trustees
  • Safeguarding for trustees
  • Quality, diversity and inclusion

To find out full details, please click here.


Association of Chairs Event “Rethinking Charity Closure”

The Association of Chairs is running an event on 15 November to explore the issues around deciding to close a charity. Although this is often viewed as a negative decision, it can sometimes be a normal part of a charity’s natural life span.

As CC3 ‘The Essential Trustee’ highlights: Acting in the charity’s best interests means always doing what the trustees decide will best enable the charity to carry out its purposes, both now and for the future.

It’s not about serving:

  • the interests of trustees or staff
  • the personal interests of members or beneficiaries
  • the personal interests of supporters, funders or donors
  • the charity as an institution in itself, or preserving it for its own sake

Sometimes trustees need to consider collaborating or merging with another charity, or even spending all of the charity’s resources and bringing it to a close.

The event brings together three people with insight and expertise on closing charities. They offer practical hands-on experience and will share their insights on how to open up conversations about closure, and if it is the right course, how to navigate it well.

Click here for full details, including how to book your place.

The Association of Chairs publishes a free monthly e-newsletter containing useful resources and support, including events like the one above. To register, please click here.


Resources to support Chairs and Trustees with good governance

Age UK provides a number of online resources aimed at supporting Chairs and trustees to deliver excellent governance of local Age UK charities.

The resources include:

  • Pointers to the key Charity Commission guidance
  • A link to the Association of Chairs, an independent membership group which supports Chairs from all charities
  • Ideas on recruiting and retaining trustees
  • Guidance on CEO appraisals
  • Information on Age UK network quality standards
  • A briefing on the Charity Governance Code
  • Sources of support for local Age UKs relating to service development, funding, finance and more
  • Template governing documents for local Age UKs – useful when reviewing your constitution

These resources can be found on the loop – the intranet for the Age UK network – by clicking here.

If you do not have access to ‘the loop’ then please contact theloop@ageuk.org.uk


Hempsons’ Free Trustee Training Webinars – November 2022

Hempsons are delighted to announce that their annual trustee training will now be held online. They will be joined by haysmacintyre, charity accountants, who have supported the trustee training for a number of years.

The course will share experiences of some of the governance lessons that charities have learnt through the pandemic and as they re-focus strategy afterwards. These include an acceleration in decision-making and implementation. Organisational speed of response has been enabled by streamlined, focused delegation and greater board entrustment of staff and volunteers. Other efficiencies can include proportionate reporting to the board on the core areas they need to measure.

The programme has been split into three separate sessions, which can be attended as a full programme, or individually – the sessions are interlinked and build on each other. It has been designed for charity Trustees and Chief Executives, and is suitable for those new in post as well as the more experienced who are wanting a refresher. 

Click here for full details, including how to book your place.

October 2022 Finance Network Meeting – “The Importance of Good Financial Governance”

The next Finance Network Meeting will take place on Wednesday 26th October from 11:00 to 12:30 and will focus on the topic “The Importance of Good Financial Governance”.

The next Finance Network Meeting will take place on Wednesday 26th October 2022 from 11:00 to 12:30. The meeting will cover the very topical subject of ‘The Importance of Good Financial Governance’ which will be presented by Judith Miller, a Partner in Sayer Vincent, leading auditors and advisers to charities and social purpose organisations. (Financial Governance here includes relevant financial controls and also good reporting practices, for trustee boards and for SMT use.) Find out full details below, including how to book your place.

We will also be joined on the day by Angela Croucher, Finance Director at Age UK West Sussex, Brighton & Hove, who will share some of her perspectives on Good Financial Reporting for the trustee board.

Both topics are very relevant because we are all living in very uncertain times right now – having come through the worst of the pandemic, we are now facing unprecedented challenges in the form of the cost-of-living crisis, spiralling energy costs (albeit now thankfully capped, but for how long?), inflation, staff recruitment and retention issues and radical changes in the funding landscape. If ever there was a time for trustees to ensure good financial governance in their organisations and to be receiving clear and informative financial reports, that time is surely now.

The pandemic impacted on the Network in varying ways and to different degrees. Many Brand Partners have found new ways to reach clients, adapting working practices to address new circumstances – in particular, by making greater use of technology. This will bring its own set of challenges and it is important that local Age UKs ensure their financial controls and governance processes are fit for purpose and have kept pace with these changes.

According to the Charity Code of Governance, a charity is best-placed to achieve its ambitions and aims if it has effective governance and the right leadership structures. ‘Skilled and capable trustees will help a charity attract resources and put them to best use.’

But effective financial governance carries more challenges because many trustees won’t have been recruited for their financial skills and may not feel confident about finance. Some may be over-reliant on others who have more experience to take the lead on financial matters, or they may engage in an inappropriate level of detail when effective financial management means looking at the bigger picture and longer-term sustainability of the charity.

This can be helped or hindered by the financial information with which trustees are presented. Do reports help them to understand the drivers of financial sustainability and explain, in simple terms, the charity’s position on results, cash, and reserves?

So as a trustee, or a member of the SMT, are you sufficiently up to speed with the present financial position of your charity? Are you able to consider the best way forward for the charity at this time of huge financial and economic challenge? Are you able to show the leadership which good governance demands of trustees?

Book your place

To book your place at the meeting, or if unable to attend on the day, to request a copy of the slides and the recording, please click here.

You will receive a brief confirmation once you have submitted your registration form. The Teams Meeting Link and Joining Instructions will be sent to you directly by the Financial Governance Team nearer the time of the event in the usual way. So please fill in the form using the above link, book out the time in your diary and watch out for the Teams Meeting Link email – thank you.

Webinar on 27 October – join us as we share lessons from 10 years of holistic advice projects

Learning is a key part of our culture at Age UK and we use it to better shape our programmes with the Age UK Network. Pulling together 10 years of learning, evaluation and feedback from four holistic information and advice projects that many of you have worked with us on, we’ve produced a report which we hope will influence potential funders to support this crucial work.

To help bring the report to life and share some of those key lessons with you, we’ll be running a webinar on 27 October from 10-11am for the Age UK Network. You’ll have a chance to hear from the team managing these projects, a local partner or two about their experiences, and share your thoughts and experiences of this type of work.

You can use the following link to join the Teams webinar directly on the day.

Please email justin.butler@ageuk.org.uk for more information.

PIR for Q2 of 2022/23 now available for completion!

The form for the second Quarterly PIR of 2022/23 is now available for you to complete ahead of the 2nd November deadline.

This is to let you know that the latest Partner Information Return (PIR) is now available for completion here. This covers the period between 1st July and 30th September 2022, Quarter 2 of 2022/2023. The deadline for completion is the 2nd November 2022. Find out full details below, including the link to the data report from Q1 of 2022/23.

The reference copy and the data transparency statement for this PIR can be viewed below:

Word Doc Reference Copy:

Data Transparency Statement:

Data Report for Q1 2022/23

A big thank you to all 99 Partners who completed the PIR for Quarter 1 of 2022/23 – this is the most returns we have received for the last five quarters!

You can find the full data report of your responses here.

Why the Partner Information Return Matters

The PIR is used to enhance Age UK’s knowledge of the Network, so that we can display our collective strength in media, fundraising, and influencing opportunities.

The more returns we receive, the more powerful and useful the data we can display when talking to funders over the winter, demonstrating the breadth of the Age UK Network’s work with older people.

If you have any questions or feedback please email localstatistics@ageuk.org.uk. Thank you as always for taking the time to complete the Partner Information Return.

Registration for the Age UK Influencing Conference closes on Wednesday 5th October!

Make sure to sign up for this year’s Influencing Conference before the October 5th cut-off date! The event is open to all Staff, volunteers and trustees from across the Age UK Network.

This is a quick reminder that you can still sign up here to attend this year’s Age UK Influencing Conference on Wednesday 12th October 2022! We are welcoming staff, volunteers and trustees from across the Age UK Network and multiple attendees from the same local Age UK are welcome and encouraged. Registration closes on Wednesday 5th October, so please register today to avoid disappointment.

This year’s conference will be looking at the challenges older people (and the local Age UKs supporting them) face, and sharing ideas, evidence and practical ways to improve their lives. We’ll hear from local Age UKs and policy experts on topics such as the cost of living crisis, digital exclusion, tackling health inequalities through targeted approaches to black and minority ethnic older people, and working with ICSs, sharing tips from across the network. We will also consider the very difficult winter ahead for local Age UKs, as energy prices soar, and what we can do to help through our influencing activity.

This year’s agenda will include external speakers from The Kings Fund, Resolution Foundation and National Energy Action, as well as presentations from both Age UK and local Age UKs.

The conference will take place online from 10am to 3pm on Wednesday 12th October 2022 but you can choose which sessions you’d like to tune into if your capacity is restricted. However, specific workshops have limited capacity, so please sign up now to avoid disappointment.

Please contact isabel.bailey@ageuk.org.uk with any queries about sign ups and mbalu.bah@ageuk.org.uk with any queries about the event.

Reminder: Book your place at the Age UK Influencing Conference 2022!

The sign-up page for this year’s Influencing Conference is now live! The event is open to all Staff, volunteers and trustees from across the Age UK Network.

This is a quick reminder that you can now sign up here to attend this year’s Age UK Influencing Conference on Wednesday 12th October 2022! We are welcoming staff, volunteers and trustees from across the Age UK Network and multiple attendees from the same local Age UK are welcome and encouraged. Over half of the available places have been booked already, so please register today to avoid disappointment.

This year’s conference will be looking at the challenges older people (and the local Age UKs supporting them) face, and sharing ideas, evidence and practical ways to improve their lives. We’ll hear from local Age UKs and policy experts on topics such as the cost of living crisis, digital exclusion, tackling health inequalities through targeted approaches to black and minority ethnic older people, and working with ICSs, sharing tips from across the network. We will also consider the very difficult winter ahead for local Age UKs, as energy prices soar, and what we can do to help through our influencing activity.

This year’s agenda will include external speakers from The Kings Fund, Resolution Foundation and National Energy Action, as well as presentations from both Age UK and local Age UKs.

The conference will take place online from 10am to 3pm on Wednesday 12th October 2022 but you can choose which sessions you’d like to tune into if your capacity is restricted. However, specific workshops have limited capacity, so please sign up now to avoid disappointment.

Please contact isabel.bailey@ageuk.org.uk with any queries about sign ups and mbalu.bah@ageuk.org.uk with any queries about the event.

Government outlines plans to help cut energy bills for charities

Find out about the new Government Energy Bill Relief Scheme, which will see discounts on wholesale gas and electricity prices for organisations, including charities.

The Government has announced details of their support for households, businesses and public sector organisations facing rising energy bills this winter. Through a new Energy Bill Relief Scheme, the Government will provide a discount on wholesale gas and electricity prices for all non-domestic customers (including the voluntary sector) whose current gas and electricity prices have been significantly inflated in light of global energy prices. Click here for more information.

Learning and Resources from the Ageing Better Programme

Ruth Bamford, Learning Lead for Ageing Better at The National Lottery Community Fund, shares some of the impact from their Ageing Better programme.

The National Lottery Community Fund’s Ageing Better programme was a seven-year, £87 million programme designed to test different ways of improving the lives of people over 50 by addressing social isolation and loneliness within local communities. The programme was delivered by 14 place-based partnerships across England.

In this article, Ruth Bamford, Learning Lead for Ageing Better at The National Lottery Community Fund, shares below some of the impact from their Ageing Better programme, as well as highlighting the importance of delivering a person-centred approach when addressing loneliness and social isolation.

Reach, key learning and impact

During the programme’s seven-year duration, more than 150,000 people over the age of 50 engaged in Ageing Better. It was especially effective at engaging groups particular risk of experiencing loneliness and social isolation, including older people from the LGBTQ+ community, as well as from ethnic minority backgrounds.

To ensure learnings and evaluation from across the programme is available, The National Lottery Community Fund recently published the Ageing Better Programme: Summative Report and the Ageing Better: Impact Evaluation Report.

The Summative Report provides a comprehensive overview of the programme and shares key learnings and recommendations. It highlights the importance and impact of involving people through co-production, adopting a ‘warm welcome’ approach, and working in partnership across sectors.

The programme’s Impact Report shows that Ageing Better had a measurable impact overall on participants’ wellbeing and levels of social contact. Our qualitative research also identified improvements in people’s confidence and in their sense of being in control of their lives, together with increased resilience. We found that being involved in Ageing Better and engaging in groups and activities enabled people to broaden their social networks, so “buffering” them from the impact of additional life events.

We talk about our Ageing Better national learning in terms of context, connections and ecosystem. These three interconnected segments build a picture of the macro and micro factors, services and support systems that help us to better understand loneliness and social isolation in people aged over 50. More information about this can be found in our Tenets of Ageing Better  paper, but here we will focus on the importance of building connections and delivering a person-centred approach.

The importance of connections and a person-centred support

We know that understanding someone’s unique situation is key to engaging with them as an individual because no “one size fits all”! By identifying the reasons why someone may be struggling to make connections, recognising their strengths, and taking a holistic person-centred approach, we can better understand a person’s specific situation and thereby tailor support accordingly. We learnt that where isolation was embedded and entrenched, people needed to be given some level of one-to-one support to help address their isolation.

Changing a person’s situation takes time, often involves skilled professionals and a broad network of multiple different agencies. Triage diagnosis and one-to-one support has been a key part of the work – identifying any priorities such as mental health support or financial issues before being able to go on and look at improving an individual’s social connections.

For example, Age Better in Sheffield and Ambition For Ageing in Greater Manchester provided one to one sessions in budgeting and financial coaching to improve people’s financial literacy. Ageless Thanet delivered a “Life Planning” service which not only included financial planning, but also wider “wrap around” support such as links with befriending services.

A key approach within Ageing Better has been to help to identify an individual’s barriers and then work with them towards achieving their personalised set of goals. Every person’s outcome will vary, with the journey out of social isolation and loneliness being different for everyone. For some, support results in improved wellbeing, but for others either their situation will not change fundamentally, or their physical decline will continue. Valuing and respecting these different end points is a crucial element of working in a person-centred way.

Creating a “Warm Welcome”

Through Ageing Better, we’ve learnt that you can’t engineer friendship, but that there is a lot you can do to facilitate or create an environment where connections and natural friendships can develop. A community that has a wide range of activities that people want to take part in creates an environment where people can feel connected. The activities themselves act as the “hook” for people wanting to get engaged and involved, which then builds confidence and allows people to make those vital natural friendships.

The Ageing Better Camden partnership, led by Age UK Camden, developed the “Warm Welcome” approach, building on what local older people were telling them about how to make community groups as welcoming as possible and how important it was. A range of factors were identified through this, including meeting and greeting, ensuring opportunities for social interaction and relationship building, facilitation and fostering a sense of community. The resulting Warm Welcome toolkit and guide is a great resource.

Legacy of Ageing Better

Since it launched in 2015, the programme has contributed a wealth of learning, evidence and practical guidance to support organisations interested in addressing loneliness and social isolation among people over 50. We’re continuing to support our partnerships to share their learning and expertise by funding Good Practice Mentors in all Ageing Better partnerships, and a full suite of evidence and learnings taken from the programme can be found on the Ageing Better page on The National Lottery Community Fund’s website.

If you’d like to hear more about our work, or link up with a Good Practice Mentor, please get in touch with Ruth at ruth.bamford@tnlcommunityfund.org.uk.

Age UK Influencing Conference 2022 “Getting through a difficult winter” – Book your place!

The sign-up page for this year’s Influencing Conference is now live! The event is open to all Staff, volunteers and trustees from across the Age UK Network.

You can now sign up here to attend this year’s Age UK Influencing Conference on Wednesday 12th October 2022! We are welcoming staff, volunteers and trustees from across the Age UK Network and multiple attendees from the same local Age UK are welcome and encouraged.

This year’s conference will be looking at the challenges older people (and the local Age UKs supporting them) face, and sharing ideas, evidence and practical ways to improve their lives. We’ll hear from local Age UKs and policy experts on topics such as the cost of living crisis, digital exclusion, tackling health inequalities through targeted approaches to black and minority ethnic older people, and working with ICSs, sharing tips from across the network. We will also consider the very difficult winter ahead for local Age UKs, as energy prices soar, and what we can do to help through our influencing activity.

This year’s agenda will include external speakers from The Kings Fund, Resolution Foundation and National Energy Action, as well as presentations from both Age UK and local Age UKs.

The conference will take place online from 10am to 3pm on Wednesday 12th October 2022 but you can choose which sessions you’d like to tune into if your capacity is restricted. However, specific workshops have limited capacity, so please sign up now to avoid disappointment.

Please contact isabel.bailey@ageuk.org.uk with any queries about sign ups and mbalu.bah@ageuk.org.uk with any queries about the event.

TV Licensing announces dispensation for local communities

TV Licensing and the BBC are granting local communities a TV Licence dispensation for displaying the funeral of the late Queen in communal settings. Find out full details here.

TV Licensing have contacted us to let us know that they are providing local communities a TV Licence dispensation for screening the funeral of the late Queen. The dispensation will allow any communal setting where TV is not usually watched, such as town halls, community centres and libraries across the UK, to screen the live programmes without needing to purchase a licence. You can read the full message from the BBC below.

“We offer our deepest condolences to the Royal Family following the death of Her Majesty The Queen. Her Majesty was the embodiment of public service.

We know that many communities may wish to come together and observe the funeral of Her Majesty The Queen and so the BBC is providing local communities a TV Licence dispensation. The dispensation will allow any communal setting where TV is not usually watched, such as town halls, community centres and libraries across the UK, to screen the live programmes without needing to purchase a licence. 

We want to reach out to communities and those who are making arrangements to let them know that the dispensation is in place and therefore we welcome your support in making your service users aware.

By law, if live television or BBC iPlayer is viewed on any premises, those premises must be covered by a valid TV Licence. However, in exceptional circumstances, the BBC can grant a dispensation for the temporary viewing of television, so long as the viewing is for the sole purpose of screening an event which is judged by the BBC to be of national importance.

As the BBC Board has said, Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II was a unifying figure across generations, communities and borders, who represented the very best of our nation. We are grateful at the BBC to have witnessed, recorded and shared so many of the special moments in her long life and reign. She will always be remembered with the greatest affection and admiration.

If you need any further information to help you to support your clients, if you have any queries or if you would like to know more please contact me on the details below:

Dan Cooper
Senior Communications Specialist | TV Licensing
Mobile: 07756 215298
Email: daniel.cooper@bbc.co.uk

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