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After several high profile charity failures in recent months, the time has come for local charities to prove their worth, following new reporting obligations from the Charity Commission for Northern Ireland. Given that these reports can be easily accessed by the public, it’s even more crucial than ever that charities can tell their story and illustrate their impact on society. For most, this is unchartered territory so it’s crucial that all those involved in the management and strategic direction of charities have a clear understanding of how best to embrace this new era of reporting. To ensure charities fully understand this new reality, three…

 By Brian Pelan The #hikeforhopeni five-day walk from Derry to Belfast ended yesterday with a reception in the Lord Mayor’s parlour at Belfast City Hall yesterday. The walk, which started last Thursday, December 17,  from the Guildhall in Derry, raised money for a number of local charities. The Hike4HopeNI sponsored walk was conceived by Ulster University professors, Siobhan O’Neill, Professor of Mental Health Sciences, and Paddy Gray, Professor of Housing. They wanted to highlight the links between mental illness and homelessness, to raise money for charity and to spread the message that “it’s ok not to feel ok, and it’s…

By Brian Pelan, VIEW editor A call for social housing to be built on the former Mackies site in west Belfast was made at a protest last night in the city. The event was organised by the Equality Can’t Wait (EWC) campaign and supported by Participation and the Practice of Rights organisation ((PPR). Men, women and children,some dressed in festive outfits, gathered at the former Mackies site to demand that their housing needs be urgently addressed. ECW was launched in 2012 by mothers and toddlers living in a hostel in north Belfast. Sean Brady at PPR said the campaign is growing…

The Whiterock Children’s Centre in west Belfast have launched an urgent Christmas appeal for donations. A spokeswoman for the centre said: “We have been helping families in a very small way for many years over the Christmas period. We didn’t plan to take on this role it just fell on our lap. “It initially started with the work we were doing with minority ethnic families who had settled in west Belfast. The majority of them are asylum seekers or refugees who basically had nothing so we got donations of furniture, clothing and food for them. “But over the last few…

Our latest issue of VIEW is now online. It’s a themed look at food issues, especially the amazing growth in community gardens in Northern Ireland. A big thanks to all who contributed to this issue, especially Belfast Food Network co-ordinator Kerry Melville and the support we received from the Food Standards Agency NI. If you would prefer to download a PDF, go to http://bit.ly/1MeyROv http://issuu.com/brianpelanone/docs/view_32?e=3341601/30946000

By Una Murphy A Greek trade unionist may gave social enterprise businesses a bigger voice in Europe, according to Northern Ireland economist Michael Smyth. Georges Dassis could have an impact on social enterprise businesses as he is the new President of the European Economic and Social Committee (EESC), the principal institution in Europe representing the voice of civil society. Mr Smyth, who is the new EESC vice president, said: “Under the presidency of George Dassis the committee will definitely be taking up a more social perspective. There will be a move (within Europe) away from austerity and fiscal consolidation and…

On Saturday, October 24, a giant animated tiger will stalk downtown Belfast accompanied by hundreds of torchlight bearers and the soul stirring sounds of 54 Dhol drummers beating out dramatic rhythms in preparation for a never-before-seen combination of dance, music pyrotechnics and special effects inspired by Diwali, the ancient Festival of Light. Presented by Northern Ireland’s leading ethnic arts group and Belfast Mela producers ArtsEkta together with the creative team from outdoor arts company Walk the Plank, ‘Nine Nights’ will be one of the most ambitious and spectacular free outdoor arts events ever staged in Belfast city centre.

MacMillan Cancer Support head of digital Amanda Neylon, pictured above, will be among the speakers at the Digital DNA conference in Belfast this week Ms Neylon will set out the digital technologies which have helped her organisation get its story across at a Digital Transformation in the 3rd sector workshop. Cloud computing, digital storytelling and engaging an audience online are among the issues to be explored. “We engage with over two million people through social channels”, said Ms Neylon, who has been with MacMillan Cancer Support for the last four years. Social media is now “fundamental” to all charities, she added, as it provides “a great communication, fundraising and awareness…

http://issuu.com/brianpelanone/docs/viewdigital_issue_32?e=3341601/30217821 Why VIEW believes a debate on use of digital technology is vital By Brian Pelan, editor, VIEWdigital Back in the 1990s, I use to work as a stone sub editor and news pages were made up on photographic paper and pasted onto boards by printers. Fast forward to 2015 and VIEW is edited and designed on a computer. I can produce the magazine anywhere in the world and with a few clicks, the content is published online in a matter of minutes. The community/voluntary/charity sector in Northern Ireland has embraced the digital age with mixed results. A few…

By Brian Pelan, editor, VIEWdigital Austerity, Jeremy Corbyn and Manchester United were all on the agenda when I recently interviewed Ulster University professor and BBC commentator Deirdre Heenan at the Ramada Hotel in south Belfast. Our discussion centred around the Heenan-Anderson report – which she was commissioned to write with businessman Colin Anderson by the former Northern Ireland Labour Party shadow secretary Ivan Lewis. I was curious to know does she think that the the report will now gather dust since Mr Lewis was replaced in his post by Vernon Coaker – part of the changes that took place after…

By Una Murphy A quiet professor has challenged the Northern Ireland government to set up a Ministry for Children Sam McCready is one of the most unassuming men you are likely to meet. Yet if his ideas where taken up by government it might lead Northern Ireland to value children as citizens from the day they are born. “Who writes the last chapter? If you said that young people wrote the last chapter (of the peace process) we should be investing in them now and giving them the resources to shape our society, he told VIEWdigital community media. He started…

 A free newspaper, created by young people in Belfast who have volunteered around the world to help people in crisis, was distributed to commuters in Belfast. The paper, called World’s Best News has been created by young people aged 18-25 years-old in response to the refugee crisis to tell people that the UK has got a successful and long history of helping people around the world, no matter where they are from or where they live.   The paper has been coordinated by Bond, the (UK membership body for international development organisations) to highlight the remarkable progress made in the fight…

To celebrate its 30th Anniversary, on November 26  at The Ramada Plaza Hotel, Belfast, PlayBoard will be holding a conference titled ‘Playing Out’ which will include a line-up of five speakers, 10 poster presentations and a keynote address by Dr Michael McBride, Chief Medical Officer. In his address Dr McBride will outline the critical importance of play to children and young people’s physical and mental health and wellbeing. The Northern Ireland Commissioner for Children and Young People, Koulla Yiasouma will also be in attendance to get proceedings underway.

Nominations are now open for Belfast’s Age-friendly Older Volunteer Awards which celebrates the valuable contribution people aged 60 and over make to groups, organisations and communities across the city. Highlighting the broad variations in volunteering there are five different award categories to choose from. These include Older Volunteer of the Year Award, the Marie Mathews Participation Award, the Arts and Culture Award; Team/Group Award and the Intergenerational Award. Information and nomination forms are available from  www.belfastcity.gov.uk/volunteering  Nominations will close on Friday, October 23. Award winners will be announced at a presentation event in Belfast City Hall in December. …

Creating Memes, GIFs & Photo Watermarks November 10 12 – 2pm Location: Belfast City Centre Visual content is becoming a hugely important way for you to engage with your audience – learn how to create your own memes, GIFS, and watermark your photos in order to bring a little variety to your social media content. To sign up for this seminar click here: http://9nl.pw/RegisterMe If you have questions, please feel free to email unamurphy@viewdigital.org

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