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Calling all keen walking enthusiasts. Action Cancer is delighted to launch their 2016 Giant’s Walk due to take place on Saturday, September 3, 2016. The picturesque Giant’s Walk, which is now in its 12th year, follows a stunning route along the Causeway coastal paths.  The walk starts off from the award winning Giant’s Causeway Visitors Centre making its way along the Causeway finishing at the Carrick-a-Rede Rope Bridge. The route is just over 10 miles and passes along a fabulous coastal route, walking via landmark sites including the beautiful sandy beach at Whitepark Bay, Dunserverick Harbour and then through Ballintoy Harbour, both…

By VIEW editor Brian Pelan BBC4 last night screened Ken Loach’s powerful 1966 documentary Cathy Come Home which revealed the shocking housing crisis in Britain at the time. The documentary sparked a huge outcry over the plight of around three million people who were living in slums,  stuck in an exploitative private housing market or who were homeless. It led to the setting up of the UK housing charity Shelter. Fifty years later we’re still living amidst a housing crisis. Thousands of families and young people in Northern Ireland, the Republic of Ireland and Britain are unable to afford a…

If you are interested in attending the launch of VIEW’s latest issue on Social Impact at The Mac, Belfast, on July 27 – 1pm-2pm, please contact Una Murphy at unamurphy@viewdigital.org A printed copy of the magazine will be available for those who attend. http://viewdigital.org/2016/06/28/latest-issue-view-look-social-impact-making-difference/

In the latest issue of VIEW we carried an interview with Celine McStravick, director of the National Children’s Bureau in Northern Ireland, in which she praised the inclusion of an outcomes-based approach in the draft Programme for Government. Academic Dr Toby Lowe offered an opposing view of an outcomes-based approach to public policy in an interview with VIEW editor Brian Pelan On page eight of the draft Programme for Government in Northern Ireland it says: “The approach taken in this Framework draws on the techniques set out by Mark Friedman in his book ‘Trying Hard is Not Good Enough’, which describes…

VIEW was delighted to get the support of Community Evaluation NI (CENI) for our latest issue which looks at social impact and making a difference. Below is the editorial written by guest editor Brendan McDonnell, director of CENI From an early age I have been interested in building and fixing things – anyone remember air-fix kits, or mecanno sets? Or simply taking things apart to see how they work and trying to put them back together again. I suppose that’s what evaluators do; they have this need to find out what organisations do, understand how they work, and how they…

Image: Celine McStravick of the National Children’s Bureau, left, with Mark Friedman; Kieran Drayne, former Colin Early Intervention Project Manager and Annie Armstrong, Manager of Colin Neighbourhood Partnership Celine McStravick, Chief Executive of the National Children’s Bureau (NCB NI) tells VIEW editor Brian Pelan that she is delighted that Stormont’s draft Programme for Government will be using Mark Friedman’s model of Outcomes-Based Accountability (OBA™). “For the first time ever,” she said, “we are very clear about what outcomes we want for the population and how we are going to measure them”. On page eight of the draft Programme for Government in…

By VIEW editor Brian Pelan We hope you enjoy our in-depth look at the issue of social impact in the latest edition of VIEW. Most organisations in the voluntary/community sector will argue that they are making a difference. But proving it is another thing all together. The involvement of Brendan McDonnell, director of Community Evaluation NI (CENI) made my task a bit easier. His role as guest editor of this issue was to gently point me in the direction of areas of interest around social impact. I was also grateful to secure the support of the Building Change Trust. Both…

In this issue we look at social impact and making a difference. We also report on the outcomes approach adopted in the draft Programme for Government in Northern Ireland. A big thanks to our guest editor; Brendan McDonnell from Community Evaluation NI (CENI) and the fantastic support we received from the Building Change Trust. To view the magazine go to http://issuu.com/brianpelanone/docs/view_issue_38 To download a version go to http://cl.ly/gYZi http://issuu.com/brianpelanone/docs/view_issue_38?e=3341601/36811118

VIEW editor Brian Pelan with Janette McKnight and Linda Moore Images: Kevin Cooper VIEW’s latest print issue on prisons and justice was launched today at the Quakers’ Friends’ Meeting House in Belfast. Among those who attended were guest editor Janette McKnight, Director of the Quaker Service; Linda Moore, Ulster University lecturer; former Justice Minister David Ford; VIEW editor Brian Pelan, Prison Ombudsman Tom McGonigle; Contact NI Director Fergus Cumiskey; Action Mental Health Chief Executive David Babington and Bill Osborne, Director of Voluntary Services Belfast (VSB Foundation). VIEWdigital co-founder Una Murphy praised all those who assisted the publication of the magazine, including guest…

By Brian Pelan Sunny Jacobs and Peter Pringle (above) are a very loving couple with a rare common bond. Each spent years on death row – she in the US, he in Ireland – before winning their freedom back. They now campaign for abolition of the death penalty and prison reform The story of Sunny Jacobs and Peter Pringle is compelling and life-affirming. A true tale of surviving against all the odds. In 1976, Sunny was placed on death row in Florida for the murder of two police officers. Four years later, in Dublin, Peter was sentenced to death for…

VIEW editor Brian Pelan talks to Linda Moore, above, Senior Lecturer in Criminology at Ulster University, about a range of issues concerning prisons in Northern Ireland, including the situation for women inmates at Hydebank Wood and what should be at the top of the in-box for the Minister for Justice Claire Sugden Amidst the noise and the hustle and bustle in the cafe at the Mac theatre in Belfast, I listened as Senior Lecturer Linda Moore spoke passionately and knowledgeably about the situation facing women prisoners in Northern Ireland and why we need reform and accountability in the penal system.…

By VIEW editor Brian Pelan I can vividly recall the first time I read Crime and Punishment by Fyodor Dostoevsky. It was in the late 1970s during a bad time in my life. I was living in a squat in London and I was unemployed. It was not the best time to be reading this classic novel. Devouring copious amounts of beans and toast, I hurtled through this dark and compelling tale, unable to put it down. Erwin James in his biography, Redeemable: A Memoir of Darkness and Hope, recounts reading the same book in his prison cell. “A dark,…

Janette McKnight, above, director of the Quaker Service,  is the guest editor of the latest edition of VIEW which examines and reports on issues surrounding prisons in Northern Ireland and further afield. Below is her editorial. “You made me realise my self-worth – that I was worth something and someone can change. I realise there is more to life than breaking the law – it cleansed my soul.” These words were spoken by a highly vulnerable man in prison befriended by one of our volunteers. It’s something we hear over and over again in different words by people who are…

By Brian Pelan, VIEW editor The prison, as the US political activist, academic and author Angela Davis once observed, “becomes a way of disappearing people in the false hope of disappearing the underlying social problems they represent”. I would argue that prison, reformed or unreformed, is not the solution to homelessness, mental illness, educational disadvantage or learning difficulties. The real solutions to social problems surely lie outside the criminal justice system. And as the new Justice Minister Claire Sugden takes up her post, she, like her predecessors in the same position, will be confronted by the same question. Do we…

Welcome to the latest issue of VIEW. https://issuu.com/brianpelanone/docs/view_issue_36_-_health A range of powerful news stories, features and analysis on key health issues in Northern Ireland and further afield. A big thanks to guest editor Joanne Morgan, director of the Community Development and Health Network and the support given to VIEWdigital by the Public Health Agency. http://issuu.com/brianpelanone/docs/view_issue_36_-_health/1?e=3341601/34523932

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