VANEL Weekly e-bulletin for 1st March 2019

Empowering Grimsby Women

The IGNITE team are putting the finishing touches to the “Empowering Grimsby Women” event that will take place on Friday 8th March at Grimsby Town Hall to mark International Women’s Day 2019. The event is from 9am-6pm at Grimsby Town Hall. There will be speakers, networking, staffs, careers advice, arts & crafts, workshops and live music. Free entry. Come along and hear from inspiring local women and find out what opportunities are out there.

Download the poster for the event here (and share it around). Facebook is IWDGrimbsy or for more information contact Kirsty (, 01472 315437) or Jessica ( See you there!

Our news

Battle of the Bands returns. A couple of years ago a number of young people with support from the IGNITE team staged a Battle of the Bands event at Moon on the Water in Cleethorpes. It was a great fun event, raised money and gave local groups and musicians some exposure. Well it’s back. In June 2019, Battle of the Bands II will be coming to a stage near you! Watch out for further news, but if you’re a young musician (or group of musicians) then get in touch with the IGNITE team who can keep you informed.

The IGNITE team will be out again cleaning up the River Freshney alongside community volunteers on Saturday 2nd March. Come along and join us and Grimsby in Bloom volunteers at Duke of York Gardens between 10am and 1pm. More information on Facebook here.

Member News

The Grimsby Islamic Cultural Centre extends an invite to “Visit My Mosque” this Sunday (3rd March). The Grimsby Mosque is taking part in this national open Mosque initiative and hopes to give community members an engaging insight into the life of the Mosque and to promote greater understanding of true Islam. Come along between 1.30-4.30pm for a tour, cultural activities and light refreshments.

CultureWorks have a bumper newsletter for February and you can read it here. Plenty of local arts news including news of the current “A Town Called Home” exhibition.

Penderels Trust are looking to recruit an Independent Living Adviser for their Grimsby Office. This is a part-time role and applications need to be in by 11th March. Download all the information here and contact Penderels Trust to enquire. Please circulate to others.

Governance Weekly

As always, the monthly Governance blog from NCVO is a great roundup of news for trustees, committee members and boards. Read the February edition just here.

If you are the Chair or Vice-Chair of a smaller charity then hopefully you already know about the Beacon programme from the Association of Chairs. If not, find out more here and signup. They currently have a programme of cheap but useful briefings that you could attend (closest are in Leeds), but they are also doing a couple of their seminars as live Webinars so if you can’t travel then these are an ideal opportunity. All the details of all their courses and webinars is here. Specifically look out for “Being an effective chair” webinar on 6th March, “Strengthening your organisation” on 19th or 27th March and other sessions.

Your board and management team should spend a few minutes looking through the Charity and Social Enterprises Spring update from BWB. Download the .pdf here. It’s important to keep up to date on legal and regulatory issues that can affect the way your non-profit operates. These monthly and quarterly briefings from BWB are an excellent roundup, so have a look.

VANEL have two Trustee related training courses scheduled in. Our “Roles and Responsibilities of Trustees” 2 hour training session (for newer trustees) will be on Wed 20th March (4-6pm). And we have a “Technology for Trustees” training session (2 hours) on Friday 22nd March (10am-12noon). This workshop looks at technology issues, skills, funding, benefits and more. It’s not highly technical, but is designed to help trustees, committees and boards to understand how to bring benefits to their organisation through better use of technology (recently updated to include more about cyber security!). Further details soon and fees apply (discounts for Members). If you’re interested in either of these please get in touch with Karl Elliott ( to discuss.

Local news

North East Lincolnshire Council works in partnership with Stagecoach to deliver local bus services through the Bus Quality Partnership. In 2019 the format of the Bus Quality Partnership is changing and there is an opportunity for local organisations to attend the Bus Quality Partnership to discuss operational public transport issues.
All meetings take place at ENGIE, New Oxford House, George St, Grimsby and the dates of the meetings are:
Monday 18 March 2019 – 15:00pm to 16:00pm
Tuesday 6 August 2019 – 15:00pm to 16:00pm
Tuesday 10 December 2019 – 15:00pm to 16:00pm
Respond to Jonathan Ford at ENGIE if you would like an invite.

Funding News

The Young Peoples Holiday Respite Fund that VANEL administers has now closed for applications. Thanks for everyone who applied in this round. Applications are now being considered, applicants will be informed and we’ll be telling stories about successful projects in the coming weeks.

Got EU funding and worried about the impact from Brexit? NCVO published a fact sheet about this a while ago, but as the end of March approaches it might be worth you and your team re-reading it and getting your head around things. The summary is that the government will underwrite EU funding until 2020 at least. Download the .pdf factsheet here.

A little way off yet, but don’t forget that the Crime Reduction Fund is open for applications up until 14th June. All the details you need and the application forms are here.

Technology News

Thanks to everyone who attended our “Cyber Security Training for small charities” yesterday. We had a great session and hopefully everyone learned something they can apply to their organisation to reduce their risks of cyber attack. Thanks too to Det Constable Chris Coupland from Humberside Police Cyber Crime Investigation Team for attending and adding insight to the training materials. For those who missed it, your best bet is to visit the NCSC website and download the guide that we referred to yesterday during the training. Or take a look at this article sharing the top 10 cyber security resources for charities. We may be running more of these training sessions in the near future, so if you’re interested in the topic of cyber security and how to keep your charity/non-profit/voluntary group more resilient to all kinds of risk then please let me (Karl) know and I can make sure you’re kept informed of upcoming training or additional resources.

Tech Trust have published a new report on IT skills across our sector. Called “The Charity Digital Spectrum. How all charities can do more with digital”, you candownload it as a .pdf here. Worryingly it indicates that IT skills on Trustee boards are dropping and that there is a growing divide between the charities that actively use IT well and those that don’t. Have a read of the report and if you’d like any support with your own IT skills or implementation then we’d be happy to have a conversation with you.

If you are a registered charity then have you taken advantage of TT-exchange to get yourself nearly free software? Unfortunately it’s for registered charities only, but if you’re eligible then you only pay administration fees rather than the full cost of software. TT-exchange is the outlet for donated software in the UK and it includes all Microsoft products amongst other tools. You can save a fortune on Microsoft office for that new PC or get Norton antivirus cheaply or many other programmes. Everything is on the TT-exchange website here. If you need advice on how to setup, apply or purchase then Members/Friends of VANEL can speak to Karl directly for advice (

And finally…

Something to read: “Inspired and Inspiring, Young People will Change the World”. Our IGNITE programme is a testimony to the power of younger people in making change in their communities and this article talks about the worldwide power and impact younger people could have over the coming years. Worth a read.