‘Liverpool charity and voluntary services’ held its annual ‘Big Event’ on Wednesday 23rd April. The event features the work of volunteers, community and social enterprise organisations, within Liverpool.
LCVS is a registered charity that helps bring organisations and people together to help improve the communities across Liverpool in lasting and memorable ways. The charity dates back to 1909, since then they have been the strategic support organisation for donors and the non-profit sector of Liverpool.
In the last year, the organisation has worked with over 500 charities and their community donors gave over £6.4 million to good causes in the UK and overseas. Their CEO, Tony Okotie, has worked in the voluntary sector for over 10 years and since becoming CEO he has noticed footfall within the organisation due to money cuts from the Government.
“Unlike most other charities we don’t provide direct services to people, we support other charities. We’re an infrastructural organisation, so we will provide business planning and fundraising events, to help charities we work with make more money and help more people.
“We do lots of events throughout the year, but this is our big one. We have network meetings where we meet with groups of organisations and we will have a small meeting talking about what is directly affecting them as organisations. In the course of a year we will run eight or nine meetings then one or two big events.
“This event is very much about giving charities information, giving them skills and informing them of things they may not have thought about, from workshops about leadership – to teamwork.
“We now work better as an organisation because we have the right team of people and an equal amount of leadership. Working in better and more meaningful ways means that we can help the charities that need it, the most.
“It was important to have key note speakers such as the deputy mayor (of Liverpool) because it sets the scene for charities to see what sector they are actually working in and how much the sector is struggling. However, the financial situation is very poor, so it was key to have Anne (O’Byrne) help organisations understand where the money comes from” explained Tony.
Keynote speaker, Sir Stephen Bubb, CEO of ACEVO (Association of chief executives of voluntary organisations) one of the UK’s representative bodies for charities across the country, discussed the challenges charities face. With the UK becoming more dominated by parliamentary powers in London, running programs within ACEVO shows how companies are challenging the issues they face and pioneering for charities who need a voice:
“LCVS is a shining light in a bleak time where funding has become difficult, yet the demand is still growing.
“Our country needs charities and social organisations, such as LCVS, to defend and promote the charity sector.
“The work LCVS does means that making our voices heard by the highest people in the land is vital when supporting the most vulnerable people.”