Funding news

Campaigning Research Programme debate over compensation claims continues - 19 January 2010

The Office of the Third Sector has denied claims made by NCVO that it has rejected compensation applications from charities that should have received grants under the abandoned Campaigning Research Programme.

The charities who had applied to the fund were informed at the time that they would be compensated for expenses of up to £1,000 they had incurred through applying to the fund. However, some charities have been facing problems.

A member of staff from one charity said she had already tried to claim expenses twice because she had been told by the OTS that she had submitted them incorrectly the first time.

Though the NCVO said it understood that most of the compensation applications had been rejected because the applications did not fulfil the OTS' guidelines, Stuart Etherington, NCVO's Chief Executive has expressed his concerns over the way charities have been treated during this process: "We are extremely concerned that many of these small charities will be left out of pocket because they simply do not have the resources to pursue this through an ever-increasing number of Government hoops."

A spokesman for the Office of the Third Sector stated that they had not rejected any claims, saying that "where organisations have provided no evidence, we have asked them to do so. It would be wrong to spend public money without properly accounting for the expenditure. To ensure no charity misses out, we have provided someone independent they can speak to if they need help. And we have also extended the deadline to make it easier for charities to come forward with information."

A spokeswoman for the NCVO said the umbrella body was no longer planning to take legal action over the cancellation of the fund, but that they were still waiting to receive responses to two Freedom of Information requests on the cancellation of the fund, which were due by the end of the month.

For the full article, go to: www.thirdsector.co.uk.