The Forces in Mind Trust (FiMT) continues its work to help ex-Service men and women make a successful transition back to civilian life, by awarding a grant of £82,264 to the Directory of Social Change (DSC) to enhance its research on the Armed Forces charity sector in Scotland.
Following on from DSC’s landmark study of UK Armed Forces Charities published last year, this project will provide a more detailed examination of Scottish Armed Forces charities. The Charity Commission of England and Wales requires a higher level of reporting from charities than OSCR (Office of the Scottish Charity Regulator) and this research will address the difference by seeking this additional information from the charities themselves.
The previous research conducted by DSC found the UK sector to be well coordinated but in danger of decline in financial terms. The associated website, www.armedforcescharities.org.uk provides a vital source of information for Armed Forces charities, as well as for policymakers, the media and many others. New information gleaned from the Scottish research will feed into and enhance the online resource and future reports.
Until 2014, there was no single independent source of information on charities in the UK which cater for serving and ex-serving personnel and their families (the Armed Forces Community). FiMT’s Transition Mapping Study, and others, have highlighted a number of areas where this lack of understanding causes confusion and misunderstanding amongst policy makers, funders and the charities themselves.
Whilst the Confederation of Service Charities, Cobseo, continues to be a key stakeholder in the existing project, FiMT and DSC are delighted to have the vital support of Veterans Scotland for this further study. DSC’s research on Armed Forces Charities in Scotland will analyse the finances, purposes and functions of over 400 military charities to the same level of those registered in England and Wales. This research will continue the important work of analysing the Armed Forces charities sector in the UK by focusing on Scotland in more detail than ever before; the report will be published in 2016.
Commenting on the project, DSC Chief Executive Debra Allcock Tyler said: “FiMT is absolutely determined to make sure that when looking at the data for Armed Forces charities we don’t ‘miss a bit’. The Scottish military charities sector is a hugely important part of the picture of support for our military family and I’m delighted that we are now able to include them more comprehensively in our research.”
Chief Executive of the Forces in Mind Trust, Ray Lock, said: “This key project will address a shortfall in the level of information we currently have in our insight report and on the website about the Armed Forces charity sector in Scotland. There is no better organisation than the DSC to undertake this project, and no more important supporter of our work than Veterans Scotland; we look forward to our continued partnership with them both.”
Martin Gibson, Executive Chairman of Veterans Scotland, welcomed the project saying: ”Veterans Scotland is pleased to see this addition to the previous DSC report which will clarify the full scope and spread of charities supporting our veterans and their families across Scotland. This will undoubtedly lead to even greater collaboration and mutual support between such charities as well as statutory and third sector organisations who do so much to support veterans across Scotland at a local, regional and national level. We are delighted that FiMT are sponsoring the project and that an organisation of DSC’s calibre is conducting it and look forward to working with them.”
Notes to Editors
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About the Forces in Mind Trust (FiMT):
- FiMT came about from a partnership between the Big Lottery Fund, Cobseo (The Confederation of Service Charities) and other charities and organisations. FiMT continues the Fund’s long-standing legacy of support for veterans across the UK with an endowment of £35 million awarded in 2012. Since 2004 the Fund has given more than £88 million to programmes supporting veterans. http://www.biglotteryfund.org.uk/.
- The aim of the FiMT is to provide an evidence base which will influence and underpin policy making and service delivery in order to enable ex-Service personnel and their families to lead successful civilian lives.
- FiMT awards grants (both reactive and proactive) and commissions research along three key themes: Evidence, Innovation and Collaboration. All work is published to a high standard of reportage to add to the evidence base from which better informed decisions can be made. Read more about those FiMT have helped and reports they have published at the links below:
- Useful links
Sector Insight UK Armed Forces Charities: An overview and analysis
The original study undertaken by DSC can be found here: http://bit.ly/FiMTDSCReport
About the Directory of Social Change (DSC):
- DSC is an independent charity with a vision of an independent voluntary sector at the heart of social change. DSC believes that the world changes for the better by the actions of individuals coming together within charities, voluntary organisations and community groups. DSC believes these groups are fundamental to achieving social change and should be supported and enabled to do so by government. They promote this vision as the UKs leading provider of information and support to charities through their publications, fundraising databases, training, research and advocacy. dsc.org.uk
- For several decades DSC has published research on the funding programmes of trusts and foundation, companies and government agencies and has consistently championed the cause of greater transparency in the information funders provide.