VONNE is the regional support body for the voluntary and community sector in the North East.
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Stronger charities for a stronger society

The House of Lords has produced a wide-ranging report with many welcome recommendations following a year-long enquiry into the voluntary sector.

Our CEO Jane Hartley contributed by speaking on a panel at the All-Party Parliamentary Group on Charities and Volunteering to discuss voluntary sector involvement in devolution from a North East perspective. 

The resulting report runs to 156 pages and 100 conclusions and recommendations. Civil Society has pulled out the key recommendations which can be read on their website.

Sector responses

Responses from the sector have been mixed, with some welcoming the positives contained within the report, but some felt it did not go far enough. There is also some doubt about what actions will follow from the report.

Barney Mynott, Head of Public Affairs at NAVCA, said;

“This weighty publication shows the Select Committee has done a thorough job. We are delighted to see support for grant funding, a re-commitment to not paying trustees, recognition that charity campaigning is a ‘sign of a healthy democracy’ and the timely expression of concern about the Charity Commission introducing charging.”...“The acid test is what difference this will make. Rob Wilson and OCS have to take up the challenge of this report and turn these words into real support for charities.”

Andy Hillier, editor of Third Sector, says the report from the House of Lords Select Committee on Charities is more pragmatic than revolutionary.

Sir Stuart Etherington, chief executive of the National Council for Voluntary Organisations, said that "any move to charging should go hand in hand with an overhaul of the commission’s governance" to ensure its independence from government.

The charity leaders body Acevo and the Charity Finance Group welcomed the committee’s comments, and Andrew O’Brien, head of policy and engagement at the CFG, talking specifically about the Charity Commission’s plans to charge charities for regulation, warned that rushing into charging could lead to long-term damage to public trust in the sector.

Jay Kennedy, director of policy and research at the Directory of Social Change, said it was unfortunate the committee had stopped short of recommending against the idea completely.

The full report can be viewed and downloaded from www.parliament.uk.

Voluntary Sector is vitally important for economic growth

VONNE continues to make the case for the importance of the voluntary sector to the region’s economic growth.

Carol Botten, Deputy CEO of VONNE, sits on the North East LEP Employment and Skills Board and played a leading role in refreshing the employability and social inclusion section of the LEP’s new Strategic Economic Plan (SEP).  

VONNE’s contributions are outlined in Andrew Hodgson’s, (Chair of the North East LEP) recent column for the Journal, reproduced by kind permission on our website.  

Guide for supporting children and families of prisoners

A local charity which supports prisoners and their families has launched a guide for health and social care professionals. Nepacs has produced a handy booklet and pocket guide, to provide information and guidance for anyone working in health and social care so that they can better support children and families of prisoners in the area. 

For full details, and how to access the guide, please visit the Nepacs website.

Nepacs Guide

New network - Positive Behavioural Support North East and Cumbria

The North East and Cumbria Positive Behavioural Support (PBS) Community of Practice is a network of people who are interested in developing PBS in our region and improving the lives of people with a learning disability and/or autism with behaviour that challenges.

Information about the latest news and events, useful resources/links, policy and reports are available from www.pbsnec.co.uk

Funding call for charities working with deprived and disadvantaged people

The Greggs Foundation is inviting applications to its North East core funding programme. The North East Core Funding scheme (which used be called Major Grants) awards grants to charitable organisations based in the North East of England that make a difference to people in need.   Grants of up to £15,000 per annum for up to three years are available to organisations that are supporting disadvantaged people. The deadline for applications is 17th May.

For full details, including eligibility and application procedure please see www.greggsfoundation.org.uk/grants.

Third Sector Trends in the North of England

IPPR North is currently leading a programme of research on the future of civil society in the North. As part of that work, IPPR North have published their summary of key findings report on the state of the third sector in the north of England in 2017.

The report can be accessed via their website.

UNW approved as a Big Potential Advanced provider

North East chartered accountants and business advisors UNW is urging VCSEs to get in touch after being accredited as a Big Potential provider.  Launched in 2014, the £10m fund is aimed at eligible voluntary, community and social enterprise organisations (VCSEs) to improve their sustainability, capacity and scale and help them deliver greater social impact for communities across England.

Read more details on our website.

Student run free ‘business clinic’ for charities

The Business Clinic is a scheme which offers a ‘pro bono’ consultancy service for not for profit and charitable organisations. 

Run by Newcastle Business School at Northumbria University, the service is offered by final year undergraduate and masters students, supported by a team of experts from Newcastle Business School. The service offers free advice in the form of a detailed report and presentation.  For more details contact Business Clinic Coordinator kirk.dodds@northumbria.ac.uk



Let's Talk Good Finance North East

Thursday 4 May 2pm – 5pm

Gateway Studio Project
Trinity Centre, Gateshead

Are you a charity, social enterprise or organisation that would like to know more about social investment, meet social investors and hear about and from other organisations that have used social investment to sustain or grow your organisation?

This event will help to demystify social investment and enable organisations to share their experiences. Find out more and register on our website.

What does it mean to be a child in Newcastle?

Thursday 27 April 1.30 – 4.30pm

Children North East
89 Denhill Park, Newcastle upon Tyne

Join Children England and VONNE to discuss childhood in the Tyneside area: its current pressures, the challenges and opportunities of devolution and how children’s charities can work together to put children at the heart of local decision-making.  For full details please visit the Children England website.

Social Justice and Social Renewal in the North East of England

Thursday 27 April, 12:30 - 4:30pm

Research Beehive 2.22
Old Library Building, Newcastle University

This workshop is an opportunity for voluntary sector organisations to talk to staff and students from the Politics department at Newcastle University about different ways of collaborating.

Attendees will hear about a new project, supported by the Newcastle Institute for Social Renewal, on pathways to social renewal in the North East and ways of getting involved. Lunch will be included.  For catering numbers please RSVP by 17 April.

Business and Professional Women UK National Conference

Friday 21 April 9:45am – 6pm

Royal Station Hotel
Newcastle Upon Tyne  

Registration is open for the Business & Professional Women (BPW) UK National Conference in Newcastle.  The theme of the conference is Women Driving the New Economy.  Full details are available from www.bpwuk.org.uk/conference.

Growth Hub Live: Accessing Finance 

Wednesday 26 April

Baltic, Gateshead

Growth Hub Live: Accessing Finance is a drop-in session where businesses can speak to a whole series of experts on topics affecting their business plan.  

The free session is open to any business or social enterprise of any size and in any sector.  Though the main aim is to improve access to finance, any organisation wanting to talk through issues relating to business growth are welcome to attend and connect with the experts on hand.   

For more information visit their eventbrite page.


FinanceCamp North East 

Wednesday 24 May 

Ramside Hall, Durham

Businesses looking to raise finance can meet face-to-face with dozens of investors and lenders on one day, under one roof at FinanceCamp North East.   

A programme of workshops in advance of the event will help prepare delegates to make the most of the meetings. Delegates are then matched to potential investors who they meet in person.  

For more information and to apply visit http://financecamp.co.uk/.




Our Deputy CEO Carol Botten recently met with colleagues from VCSE infrastructure organisations across the North to consider the first report from the Northern Powerhouse Partnership (NPP) and whether to create a collective sector voice to influence the Northern Powerhouse Partnership and other bodies.

Read her blog on the varied and wide ranging discussions that took place:


Where is the North East and where is the VCSE? - Northern Powerhouse roundtable

Our Ebulletins

Did you know we produce a range of regular ebulletins? Sign up through our website for information on these:
You can advertise your voluntary sector job or trustee position on our website and in our ebulletins for £50 for Membership+ members, £120 standard rate (+VAT if applicable).

Visit VONNE Jobs

Below are some of the jobs advertised. Take a look at our website for the full listings and sign up for our free weekly jobs ebulletin.

Paid Roles


Chief Executive Officer, Tees Valley Arts
Tees Valley Arts

Marketing and Communications Co-ordinator

North Tyneside Carers' Centre
£ 18,782 pro rata

Dementia Adviser

Alzheimer's Society
£14,846 actual per annum

Volunteer Recruitment Officer

Citizens Advice County Durham
£20,503 to £22,040.73

Dementia Services Team Leader

Age Uk North Tyneside

Community Services Manager

Age UK North Tyneside
£26,742- £30,546

Support Worker (1 year fixed term)

Action Foundation
£15,457 - £18,769

One Point Advice Worker

Citizens Advice County Durham
£20503 to £22040.73

Learning Disability Advocate

Citizens Advice County Durham
£22,040.73 to £23,373.42 pro rata

Generator: Finance and Administration Manager

£23,000 – £27,000 dependent on experience

Evaluation, Learning & Research Manager

Changing Lives
£34,300 - £38,300

Autism Department Duty Manager (Fawdon)

New Beginnings North East Ltd
£10.50 per hour (pay award pending)

Marketing and Sales Manager (Home Support)

Age UK Newcastle
£22,221- £25,472 per annum pro rata

Refugee Resettlement Support Worker (Syrian Arabic speaking) –

The Gateshead Housing Company
Grade: Grade F £21,057 – £23,166 per annum (SCP 23-26). Full time – 37 hours per week. Temporary until 30 November 2020.

Family Support Manager - Safe Families for Children

Safe Families for Children
£25-32k pro rata (depending on experience) - Full-time and Part-time available

Campaigns Project Manager, North East Region, Asylum Matters

City of Sanctuary
£26,000 per annum

Events Coordinator

St Cuthbert's Hospice
£18,844 to £20,964

Fundraising Assistant

MS Research and Relief Fund

Project Worker, Basis Beds

Oasis Aquila Housing
£17,345 - £18,184 per annum

Missing and CSE Project Worker - North Tyneside (maternity Cover)

The Children's Society

Community Care & Financial Capability Worker

Citizens Advice Darlington
£17,161 per annum pro rata

Welfare Benefits Outreach Worker

Citizens Advice Darlington
£19,621 - £22,221 per annum pro rata


Citizens Advice Darlington
£21,519 - £22,958 pro rata per annum

Fundraising Manager

The Children's Foundation

Operations Manager

£27,500 - £30,000 per annum

Mobilisation and Integration Manager

Changing Lives

More jobs on website


Trustee Roles



Cygnus Support

Trustee (Voluntary)

Wm Morrison Darlington Enterprise Trust
Not applicable (expenses provided)

Trustee (Voluntary)

Citizens Advice Northumberland

Enterprising Trustee for Children's Autism Charity

The Toby Henderson Trust
This is an unpaid role, however your expenses will be covered.

Trustee - Age UK North Tyneside

Age UK North Tyneside

Honorary Secretary Northumbria Historic Churches Trust

Northumbria Historic Churches Trust
Unpaid but Expenses for which a 3 year budget is set

Volunteer Co Chair

Inclusion North

Non Executive Director Board

EveryDay (subsidiary of Age UK North Tyneside)
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