A few key things I needed to share with you (29th August 2018).

This is less of a blog and more of an update, but some key messages that I wanted to share with the voluntary, community and social enterprise sector in Bolton.

How secure is your I.T.?
I don’t know about you, but we’ve been getting spammed left, right and centre recently – people pretending to be me to get past our finance (thank goodness for our financial controls), people pretending to be from other organisations chasing non-existent payments and we’ve been hearing about it from our partners across Bolton. You may have reviewed your data control policies as part of your GDPR audit, but have you looked at your I.T. security? We’re all at risk, so it’s important that we all keep on top of it.

Make sure that you check out this guide for small charities: https://www.ncsc.gov.uk/charity. Check out our training programme for the coming months too for data protection and other training: https://www.boltoncvs.org.uk/training?page=1.

The Essential Trustee – when was the last time you shared it with your Board members?
I don’t meant to tell you how to suck eggs, but this is really just a helpful reminder; it’s important that whenever we involve people in our organisations that they know what they’re taking on. I can’t stress enough how important it is to remind Board members of their legal obligations. I’m sure that you’ve done it already, but maybe it’s a good time to ‘share again’ the ‘Essential Trustee’ with your board and flag it as an agenda item at your next meeting, just to make sure that you’ve done your bit: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/the-essential-trustee-what-yo....

VCSE Strategy Co-Design Working Group
I’m Co-Chairing the VCSE Strategy Co-Design Working Group for Bolton with Ged Gallagher from Bolton Council. This group is looking at how partners from across Bolton breathes life into Bolton’s Vision 2030 and Locality Plan commitments towards the VCSE considering how the groups and organisations are supported, how funding could be distributed, understanding how we can effectively grow and build capacity in communities, how volunteers can and should supported and how skills and learning is shared and connectivity across sectors.

I’m not the only person representing a VCSE organisation or collective on the group, as the Chair of Bolton Together, the Chair of Bolton Christian Community Cohesion, the Chair of Homestart Bolton (and Chair of Bolton CVS) and Bolton at Home, together with Bolton Council (Public Health, Commissioning and Policy leads) and NHS Bolton Clinical Commissioning Group are all supporting this piece of work. Over the coming months we’ll be engaging with the sector on this through a series of briefings and via a workshop at the Bolton CVS AGM, initial meetings have focussed on ‘terms of reference’ and potential scope, together with strengthening the buy-in from Bolton Council and NHS Bolton Clinical Commissioning Group.

Development of the Integrated Care Partnership (ICP) - the entity formally known as the Local Care Organisation (LCO).
Following previous information that Bolton CVS have shared and the briefing from Su Long (Chief Officer of NHS Bolton Clinical Commissioning Group) and Jackie Bene (Chief Executive of NHS Bolton Foundation Trust), AqUA have been commissioned to support a piece of work looking at what an integrated offer for health and social care in Bolton will look like. Two providers from the VCSE have been invited to support that piece of work (the Chair of the Voluntary and Community Sector Forum and the Chair of the VCSE Health and Wellbeing Forum). As this work develops, we’ll share more information. A shadow entity to support the development of Health and Social Care has now been started and Bolton CVS have been invited to have a role on that. The first meeting happened yesterday and I’ll keep you posted as things developed.

There’s loads of other things that will be in our weekly bulletin, but I felt it was important to share these few things.

Thanks as always and don’t forget; we’re here if you need us – just get in touch.