Research & Reports

British Red Cross - Prevention in Action

A resource for local decision makers

CAB Report - Waiting for Credit

National Citizens Advice Bureau  Report  Waiting for Credit,  which details the delivery of Universal Credit as experienced by 16  Citizens Advice Bureau offices and their clients in England and Wales between June 2014 and June 2015.

It gives examples of some of the experiences and difficulties that clients have faced when applying for and receiving Universal Credit.



Facts and Figures about the Charity Sector

nfp Synergy Key Facts & Figures

Guide to Mesmac NE and LGBTQ services

Mesmac has updated its pocket guide to Mesmac and LGBTQ services available in the North East
To Find full information booklets and reports here


Help Shape the Future Of the Sector in Sunderland

The ‘Taking the Temperature’ consultation and subsequent report (February 2016) provided Voluntary Community Action Sunderland (VCAS) with a ‘snapshot’ of the current conditions the sector are facing, the services they have accessed to support their organisations to deliver throughout the year, the difficulties and challenges that manifest as a direct result.


To recap these include;


- Public sector contracts replacing grants

- Increased competition for charitable trust grants

- Increased competition from national providers

- Decreased statutory body support

- Decrease in charitable giving

There is also the emerging issue of loss of public trust, with several high profile cases of charity governance and fundraising practices being called into question.

Taking these findings on board VCAS undertook a follow up consultation (February 2016) to ascertain the future needs of the voluntary community sector (VCS) in Sunderland. It was envisioned that he data would allow VCAS to determine these support needs as well as identify the most appropriate method of delivery, based upon information gained from participants.

VCAS are a member led organisation and have a proud 43 year history of supporting voluntary community sector development throughout the City. This consultation will allow VCAS to better understand the issues the sector face and develop services and service delivery for the future benefit of both our members and the broader VCS. 

Law Works - Legal Advice For Not-For-Profits

The Not-For-Profits Programme brokers legal advice to small not-for-profit organisations on a wide range of legal issues, to support the continuation and expansion of their services to people in need. The advice is given for free (pro bono).

Law works help charities, voluntary organisations, social enterprises, and other not-for-profits in England and Wales in the following ways:

Free legal assistance

The Not-For-Profits Programme brokers legal advice to small not-for-profit organisations on a wide range of legal issues. 

These can include drafting a contract, reviewing a lease, updating a constitution/articles, or clarifying rights in a commercial dispute. 

You can find more information here.

Initial advice and health checks

The Honorary Counsel scheme matches small not-for-profit organisations with volunteer lawyers on a longer-term basis, to carry out Health Checks and to give initial advice when needed. 

You can find more information here. 

Free videos

Free Talks are short online videos about common legal issues faced by small not-for-profit organisations.  The videos are all free to watch and aim to help you when making important decisions.  You can view the Free Talks here.  


If LawWorks cannot assist you with what you need, you may want to try one of the options listed here.



New & Updated Charity Report Templates

Form: Trustees' annual report template (SORP FRS 102)

A pro-forma charity trustees' annual report.

Form: Charity accounting templates: accruals accounts (CC17) - SORP FRS 102

Templates for completing a charity's accruals accounts by charitable activity for accounting periods beginning on or after 1 January 2015.

Form: Independent examiner's report template (SORP FRS 102)

Use this template when independently examining charity accounts. (Only if accounts exceed £10K)



Regulating Fundraising For the Future

Trust in charities, confidence in fundraising regulation September 2015

Taking the Temperature Report

The state of play of the Voluntary and community sector in Sunderland

The VCS in Sunderland Inward Investment Summary

Detailed Analysis of Inward Investment Fact Sheet 2014 – 15