Charities regaining confidence to campaign, survey shows

first_img Campaigners and change-makers feel public attitudes towards their work are becoming more supportive, despite reporting increasingly negative attitudes amongst politicians and the media, according to the latest Sheila McKechnie Foundation Campaigner Survey. 189 campaigners and change-makers were surveyed for the Sheila McKechnie Foundation Campaigner Survey this year – the highest since the survey began in 2016. Overall, 30% said things had got better in the past year, while 36% said things had got worse (down from 49% in 2018). Almost half (48%) believe that public attitudes to campaigning have become more positive in the past year, with 45% reporting increasingly negative attitudes amongst politicians and 41% from the media.Most however (87%) believe the legitimacy of campaigning by civil society is under threat, although this has fallen slightly from 93% in 2018, while 36% say things have got worse in the past year, again a drop from 2018 (49%). Where respondents said they thought things had get better for campaigning, this was attributed to a range of factors including increased public action and wins, increased collaboration, and new Electoral Commission guidance.In terms of why they thought things had got worse, respondents mentioned lack of space for other issues while politicians and public are distracted by political upheaval and Brexit, a hostile environment for campaigning, lack of funding, and organisation attitudes.This year, the top three factors that respondents say threaten the legitimacy of campaigning are:Conditions on funding that prevent lobbying, campaigning or advocacy (57%)Civil society isn’t as confident and proud about its right to campaign as it should be (53%)General lack of awareness about what civil society campaigning has achieved (52%)Fewer expressed concern about the Lobbying Act – down from 64% in 2018 to 48% in 2019. A similar number expressed concern about negative media coverage, with less also concerned about a negative public view of civil society campaigning.More charities are now campaigning to influence legislation than in the previous year, up from 52% in 2018 to 67%, but the number working to change central or local government policy remains static at 78%, while there has been a drop in the number advocating for a particular group (57%) or for their service users (52%). Both are down from 66% and 64% respectively in 2018. Those targeting private sector companies remains stable at 37%.This year, only 12% report that they or their organisation are campaigning less – half that in 2018. In addition: Over a third (36%) say they are now campaigning more – a threefold rise on 2017 and holding steady38% report that boards and senior leaders are more positive towards campaigning than this time last year 43% report that other colleagues have a more positive attitude.9% report a more negative attitude to campaigning amongst trustees and senior leaders, compared to the 37% who reported their boards were more cautious about campaigning last yearPerceptions of funders, both public and independent, remain largely unchanged with 6% reporting more positive attitudes to campaigning among public funders, and 16% saying independent funders are more positive.Sue Tibballs, Chief Executive of the Sheila McKechnie Foundation, said: Advertisement AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to LinkedInLinkedInShare to EmailEmailShare to WhatsAppWhatsAppShare to MessengerMessengerShare to MoreAddThis4 Charities regaining confidence to campaign, survey shows Tagged with: campaigning research Melanie May | 27 February 2020 | Newscenter_img “It is brilliant to see civil society rallying and recovering its confidence to campaign after a long period of feeling conflicted and constrained. Conditions put on public funding have made it difficult for charities to speak up, and the sector has come under sustained pressure from politicians and regulators to step away from political debate. The UK’s civic space is now rated as ‘narrowed’.“We believe civil society campaigning is a vital part of public debate and of a healthy democracy. Charities exist not just to pick up the pieces of failing systems, but to bear witness to these impacts and argue for changes in attitudes, policy and law.“Civil society is where most radical social change proceeds from – not from governments. Constraining civil society is not just anti-democratic. It weakens our chances of addressing the very many challenges we face – from polarisation to climate change. SMK will keep working to promote a braver, more united, civil society voice and identity.” Polly Neate, Chief Executive of Shelter, commented:“Campaigning is not an added extra to our ‘real’ work – it’s a vital part of it. Our job is to defend everyone’s right to a safe home. That means offering advice and support to millions of people through our frontline services, as well as changing the attitudes, laws, political decisions and systems which can threaten that right. We are proud to campaign for the longer-term solutions that hopefully mean one day no-one will have to turn to us for help. The public are OK with that.”  341 total views,  2 views today  342 total views,  3 views today AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to LinkedInLinkedInShare to EmailEmailShare to WhatsAppWhatsAppShare to MessengerMessengerShare to MoreAddThis4 About Melanie May Melanie May is a journalist and copywriter specialising in writing both for and about the charity and marketing services sectors since 2001. She can be reached via read more

Portugal beat Netherlands 1-0 to win UEFA Nations League

first_imgHosts Portugal claimed their second trophy in three years by beating the Netherlands to win the inaugural Nations League.Fernando Santos’ side triumphed at the 2016 European Championship and Goncalo Guedes’ second half strike gave them a narrow victory in Porto.The Valencia winger smashed in from the edge of the area following Bernardo Silva’s clever cutback, though Dutch goalkeeper Jasper Cillessen will be disappointed he did not keep the effort out.The Dutch looked to get back into the game but Memphis Depay’s powerful header was well saved by Wolves number one Rui Patricio and ex-Middlesbrough midfielder Marten de Roon lashed over.England finished third in the tournament after a victory on penalties over Switzerland in Guimaraes.Ronaldo kept quiet by Van DijkThe game was billed on the clash of the two influential captains – Portugal forward Cristiano Ronaldo and Netherlands centre-back Virgil van Dijk.Both players claimed silverware at club level last season, Ronaldo winning the Serie A title with Juventus, while Van Dijk contributed to ending Liverpool’s seven year wait for a trophy by triumphing in the Champions League.Ronaldo, 34, scored a sublime hat-trick in the semi-final victory over Switzerland but was unable to add to his 88 international goals, seeing a thumping, goalbound drive blocked by the towering Van Dijk.The closest he came to netting was when he skipped past two defenders from the left, but stuck a shot straight at Barcelona’s Cillessen. He also smashed a free-kick wide late on.Former Southampton and Celtic player Van Dijk was his solid, assured self at the back but could do nothing about the winning goal, though Cillessen was unable to keep out Guedes’ strike having got a hand on the effort.Portugal are now unbeaten in their last 10 games and despite defeat, Netherlands – who have failed to reach the last two major tournaments – will take heart from their progress since the appointment of Ronald Koeman as boss. Source: BBClast_img read more

AFCON 2015- Too close to call after matchday two

first_imgWhat a competition this is turning out to be! That all sixteen nations still have a fair chance of making it to the Round of 16 speaks volumes about the progress made as far as the sport is concerned on the continent. In my previous assessment of matchday 1, I thought all sixteen sides had given a good account of themselves and deserved to progress to the next stage. It was early days yet though as it was impossible at the time to say who had the upper hand going into matchday two. With every tourney, certain nations are tipped to go all the way while some are barely given a chance to even make it out of their group. Those in the business of doing that would have to be rewriting their scripts by now.GROUP AHas it really come to this would be the question on the lips of everyone in the host nation and their neighbours Gabon. These two nations shared the prestige of hosting the CAN only three years ago. A competition that would be best remembered for that amazing Zambian spectacle which saw the Southern African nation win the competition for the first time having lost in the finals of 1974 and 1994 to DR Congo and Nigeria respectively. With three points in the bag, Gabon would fancy their chances of progression and why wouldn’t they?In Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang, they have one of the paciest forwards in the game. A point might just be enough for them but against the host who would have a sizeable number of expected 38,000 fans rooting for them, everything is possible.A win would definitely see the hosts through. A draw, as they have experienced in their first two games would surely not be enough. It is that tight and how the prayers would intensify when the two sides line up at the Estadio de Bata come Sunday. The atmosphere would surely be electrifying. I understand the leaders of the two countries, His Excellencies Presidents Obiang Mbasago and Ali Ben Bongo would be at the Stadium to cheer their sides on. With the significance of this game, I would not envy the passionate and football mad fans of the two nations at all.Claude Le Roy’s Congo look like having the best chance of qualifying from this group with four out of a possible six points. Lead striker Thievy has been instrumental in getting the Congolese this far and it would take a monumental effort from 2013 finalists Burkina Faso to get that all important win which may still not be good enough depending on how the other game pans out. Head to head, goal difference? It could just come to that. Intriguing, isn’t it? Claude Le RoyGROUP BPrior to the commencement of the CAN, I honestly thought all four nations in this group stood a very good chance of progressing to the next stage of the competition. In Tunisia, Cape Verde, DR Congo and Zambia, they all seemed to be at par for me. The results in their two games though can be likened to the scenario we have in Group A. Tunisia only just edged out Zambia after the Chippolopolo squandered countless and begging opportunities to win that tie. Belgian George Leekens and his charges would not be bothered about that as a draw in their final round against DR Congo should be enough to see them through. The Congolese would be wary about history repeating itself as they ended up drawing all three games in the previous edition in South Africa. They find themselves in familiar territory and they would know that only a result would see them progress.Cape Verde were exciting to watch when they qualified for their maiden CAN event two years ago where they made it to the quarter final stage. The neutrals would surely be rooting for them in their final game against Zambia. They punched above their weight in the previous edition. Can they do it again? GROUP CHe may not be playing for a fancy club in a competitive league but how many times has Yaw Asamoah Gyan defined Ghana’s performances in various tournaments in the last decade? He may not have won anything yet with the side but when his goals continue to make a difference to his side’s performances, you have got to doff off your hat for the lad. After that painful loss to the Senegalese in the group’s opener, one could literally see the nervousness that was written on the faces of many a Ghanaian football fan around the globe as the nation lined up against Africa’s number one side Algeria in the group’s matchday two. The Dessert Warriors are in the form of their lives and the Ghanaians were not going to be the side to deny them a result. A Fairy tale ending though as a 92nd winner by Gyan put Ghana right back in the mix.A point would surely not have been good enough for the Black Stars. It had to be Gyan and Gyan it was. Up next is a crucial tie against the Bafana Bafana of South Africa in a game where both sides need a win to guarantee qualification to the quarter final stage. The South Africans have played some exciting football but inexperience has cost them greatly in their last two games. Shakes Mashaba would have to dig deep into his coaching reserves for one final magical display to see his side through.The other group tie between Senegal and Algeria is that mouthwatering. The Terranga Lions could do with a point while the Algerians would have to win at all cost to ensure qualification to the quarter finals. If they draw they would have to hope for South Africa to beat Ghana. It is anyone’s game now.GROUP D How closer can this group get? All games have ended 1-1.And how about the possibility of another 1-1 drawn games on the final day of matches. Funny isn’t it? The rules are clear though- Head-to-head, goal difference, the greatest number of goals and the drawing of lots in that order will finally determine which team goes through to the next stage. It may just come down to any of these when the Cameroonians come up against the Ivorians and Guinea take on Mali. All four teams have got Malabo buzzing with their exciting brand of football, some of the best in the competition so far. How sad that two of these nations would have to exit the competition on their final day of Group games. It is simply too close to call here.With all sixteen nations in with a chance of making it through, Africa awaits the best from the lot. Who might just blink first?last_img read more