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THIS month sees the second anniversary of the Welfare Reform changes currently underway.
To mark this ‘anniversary’ we are running another set of four ThinkSpace breakfast discussion sessions on different aspects of Welfare Reform.
Take a moment to read our blog.
This time around, we asked you what topics you’d like to see discussed, and then picked the four most popular:
What is EVOC doing about Welfare Reform? on 4th April
What is the City of Edinburgh Council doing about Welfare Reform? on 9th April
What are the biggest impacts of Welfare Reform on families with children? on 11th April
What are the biggest impacts of Welfare Reform on Poverty & Inequality? on 16th April
Please do Join Us between 0815 and 0930am.
You Must Book your spaces, though: please email Dianne Morrison with details of who would like to attend which sessions.
The City of Edinburgh Council is consulting on Concessionary Lets.
EVOC are hosting two events:
- Monday 10 March 2.00pm – 4.00pm
- Thursday 20 March 10.00am – 12 noon
to discuss the Draft Concessionary Lets Policy.
Both events will take place at 14 Ashley Place, EH6 5PX.
To confirm your attendance at one of the events, please email Dianne with your preference.
ON TUESDAY 25th February the City of Edinburgh Council’s Corporate Policy & Strategy Committee will consider its annual report on Grants to Third Parties. Third Sector organisations funded by the City Council will be keen to know what the recommendations are. We are led to believe that the recommendations are not contentious, and that they will be agreed by the Committee on Tuesday.
The Committee report includes appendices which detail all proposed expenditure under this programme. The anticipated measures of success include: that funding agreements will be concluded swiftly; that funded oganisations will be satisfied with the support they get; as well as ‘attainment’ on ‘user satisfaction, financial leverage, volunteer activity and levels target achievement.’
The Council’s Review of Grants to Third Parties continues, and – in our opinion – needs the space to continue. As a result EVOC and our Third Sector Interface partners lobbied hard to protect organisations from unnecessary change. We are hopeful that over this year, protected from unwanted churn, Edinburgh’s Third Sector will engage meaningfully in the process to develop more effective relationships within the sector, with Edinburgh’s Third Sector Interface, and with our funding partners at the City of Edinburgh Council.
The grants for this year, their monitoring and the review of grants will all be conducted under the overarching Compact principle: In Equal Respect.
The Substance Use Network Edinburgh (SUNE) will be holding its AGM on MONDAY 24TH FEBRUARY 2014 from 12.30pm to 3pm at EVOC, 14 Ashley Place, Edinburgh, EH6 5PX.
At the AGM SUNE will be looking for a new chair to lead the Network for the coming year. There are challenging times ahead, with the focus on Collaborative Commissioning and ensuring the Sector is ready to engage with Alliance Contracting. SUNE needs someone with strong leadership skills, a good understanding of the sector, who is able to represent the Sector at strategic level and, who can devote around 2 days a month to the work.
This will include attendance at meetings of:
- Edinburgh Alcohol and Drug Partnership executive committee (Every 8 weeks)
- Substance Use Network Edinburgh (Monthly)
- Shadow Governance Group (Monthly)
There will be a need to meet/liaise with the EVOC staff member (currently Kate Kasprowicz) who does the support function to the group. In all we estimate around 15-16 hours a month. Unwaged.
The EADP and SUNE are entering into an exciting time of change and development which will potentially change the way that people will receive help around substance use issues, including harm reduction, treatment and on-going recovery support. SUNE have been very proactive in the movement from competitive tendering to a collaborative approach which in turn will lead to alliances being formed to take future work forward.
Challenging, but also exciting. Collaborative Commissioning is a new approach and other services will be watching how we manage this process.
Please send nominations for the new chair to Kate Kasprowicz by Friday 21st February. If you would like to talk to the current chair and find out more about what’s involved, please phone John Arthur on 07894244071.
The Chair of SUNE does not have to be a paid member of staff from a member organisation; it could be a Board member. Do you have a Board member with the skills SUNE needs, available during the day and who would relish being a Third Sector Lead? If so, a bit of encouragement may be all that’s needed.
Looking forward to getting your nominations, plus a paragraph about the skills and experience of your nominee. Nominees will have to be seconded and if there is more than one there will be an election at the AGM.
Please take a moment to look through the TSSG’s response. We do hope that you’ll agree with the broad themes.
If you have any queries, or would like to discuss this submission, please don’t hesitate to contact Milind Kolhatkar on 0131 555 9100.
New Team Recruitment – the Recovery Essentials Financial Inclusion Project
Financial Inclusion Workers (5x)
EVOC has partnered with 8 drug and alcohol services in Edinburgh to develop an exciting new initiative to ensure people affected by substance use get the right help, quickly, to address welfare rights, debt and basic needs. Financial Inclusion Workers will be based within drug and alcohol services, and together with the Project Manager, will both provide advice and support, develop group work on financial inclusion issues, and explore the most effective methods of working with people with challenging needs and circumstances.
We are now hiring:
5x Financial Inclusion Workers (full time 37 hours per week or part time – minimum 16 hours per week)
The Financial Inclusion Workers will work flexibly within 8 drug and alcohol services, on an outreach basis to their clients (including home visits). The team will specialise in offering advice, support and personal development to substance users and their families, including claims, appeals and tribunals, debt negotiation and personal budget planning.
We are looking for 2 grades of Financial Inclusion Worker. Dependent on experience:
- £23,082pa for experienced advisors to appeal level – Senior Grade
- £21,734pa for advisors with more limited experience, with progression dependent on training and performance related to key tasks (eg successful appeals) – Basic Grade
These posts are fixed term to February 2016. Secondments will be considered.
For more information on these posts or to apply, please download a job description and an application form.
Closing date for applications is Monday 10 February 2014 at 9.00am
LOOPs (Local Opportunities for Older People) Networks
In the New Year EVOC and Pilmeny Development Project will be launching a new project called ‘Local Opportunities for Older People’ or LOOPs.
These local networks, which correspond to the Social Care quadrants of the city, aim to improve communication and signposting across sectors and strengthen three referral routes into community based preventative services and activities which correspond to the numbered blue arrows on the diagram:
- Vulnerable or at-risk, socially isolated older people who, for whatever reason, are not accessing services – this might include from specific equalities groups, for example, older lesbian, gay, bisexual or transgender [LGBT] or black or minority ethnic [BME] older people who find services difficult to access.
- Older people who have undergone some form of assessment but have been assessed as ‘low’ to ‘moderate’ need who need to be signposted to additional community based preventative services or social activities.
- Older people who have been assessed as requiring services but who would benefit from additional community based services or activities: this might include older people who are undergoing a transition, perhaps from a more clinical provision to provision within the community.
The City of Edinburgh Council has made an investment into the project and we want to know from you how that investment should be spent. To find this out we will be holding four local launch events and asking the questions:
- What do you need in your community to access the most socially isolated older people?
- How can EVOC and Pilmeny Development Project work with you to develop these underdeveloped referral routes?
- What barriers are you experiencing in developing successful partnerships with other local organisations?
- How can we support older people to access the right services or activities at the right time?
The events will take place:
Faith Mission Halls, Gilmerton
Thursday 6 February, 2:00 – 4:30
Drumbrae Library Hub
Tuesday 11 February, 2:00-4:30
Wester Hailes Education Centre
Friday 31 January, 2:00-4:30
Portlee Resource Centre
Friday 20 February, 10:00-12:30
In preparation for the City of Edinburgh Council‘s Review of Community and Accessible Transport (CAT), representatives of Third Sector organisations are invited to a Symposium on Monday 20th January.
This is the third of three Symposiums to investigate and discuss issues which will impact upon the formal Review.
Ian Brooke, Deputy Director of EVOC and Chair of the Edinburgh Community Transport Organisers Group (ECTOG) encourages groups to feel welcome to this event and reassured that the voluntary sector is an active and respected partner in this learning process.
“The Council recognises that transport is fundamental to community participation and to the work of the voluntary sector. We want as much preliminary feedback and information from organisations as possible at this early stage, to help shape the formal review. The Symposium on the 20th January is a place to talk about your use of CAT and your needs for the future.”
Who this event is for:
- groups or organisations that use Community & Accessible Transport
- groups or organisations with a bus or vehicle which is dedicated to and run by their service, but which is owned by the Council
Organisations and groups which own and run their own vehicles will not be part of the Review and do not need to attend the Symposium.
Please see the invitation below:
Colleagues: We wish to invite you to a Symposium relating to the City of Edinburgh Council’s Review of Community and Accessible Transport which is currently in its research and evidence gathering stage. This is a vital stage as it is a pre-cursor to forming options upon which we could consult and be accountable.
This Review is complex and wide ranging and hence we wish to access as many viewpoints and perspectives as possible. This is the third Symposium and each time we have broadened the audience, the first was the Council and ECTOG colleagues, the second included wider Third Sector representation, NHS Lothian and a neighbouring local authority. We would welcome your involvement in this third Symposium to help shape ideas and gather further evidence.
Given the size of the likely attendance and to keep the Symposium focused and manageable, we unfortunately will have to restrict attendance to one nominee per organisation.
We trust that you will be able to be represented.
To secure your place, please contact Greer Brook Singh.
The Symposium takes place on Monday 20 January 2014 from 9am to 12.30pm in the Midlothian Suite, Lothian Chambers, George IV Bridge.
The Edinburgh Health and Social Care Partnership is seeking people to provide both a service user perspective and a carer perspective to the Partnership.
The Partnership is comprised of the City of Edinburgh Council, NHS Lothian and Edinburgh Voluntary Organisations Council, (EVOC) who are committed to the vision of ‘working together for a caring, healthier, safer Edinburgh’.
The Members’ key tasks will be to attend Edinburgh Health and Social Care Partnership meetings and ensure that the Partnership is provided with a service user and a carer perspective on agenda items. The members will ensure oversight and scrutiny of decisions and policies made by the Partnership.
The closing date for applications is 31 January 2014.
For further information, please contact Rachel Howe on 0131 529 6552.
Further information about the Edinburgh Health and Social Care Partnership is available on the City of Edinburgh Council website.
The EVOC office will close at 12 noon on Tuesday 24th December, and we will reopen on Friday 3rd January 2014.
This holiday season, we wish all the very best to our colleagues and partners across Edinburgh’s Third Sector.
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