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Voluntary and community sector organisations have a significant contribution to make to shaping and influencing public policy and service delivery. Newcastle CVS aims to keep the voluntary and community sector in the city informed through newsletters and bulletins, research and reports, events, forums and networks

Additionally Newcastle CVS works with voluntary organisations to understand and present the impact that changes to legislation and policy is having on individuals and communities. In Newcastle, poverty and inequality have a devastating effect on the lives of many of the city’s residents. The city is ranked 40th most deprived local authority area and 72,000 people in Newcastle live in the most deprived areas in the UK.

15.6% of the city’s working age population is out of work and claiming benefits. 30% of children in Newcastle live in poverty compared to an English average of 20.1%. Life expectancy for men in Newcastle is lower than the national average. Men and women who live in Newcastle’s poorer areas have shorter lives than those living in the city’s more affluent areas.

Where to get advice in Newcastle about benefits, debt and money support

Newcastle Welfare Rights Service has updated “Where to get advice in Newcastle”. The document includes details of city wide and local services providing advice on benefits, debt and money support.

Foodbanks in Newcastle information leaflet

Foodbanks in Newcastle lists details of the larger foodbanks operating in Newcastle. It does not include all foodbanks and while the leaflet is regularly updated, you are advised to try and contact the foodbanks before visiting. Most foodbanks require a referral from a social worker, GP or an organisation registered with the foodbank as a referring body. View our foodbank information sheet here.

Poverty proofing tool

Many charities and voluntary organisations have relief of poverty amongst their objectives. For some, they meet this objective by being located in communities experiencing poverty and simply being available to provide help and support. For other voluntary organisations, they deliver specific, specialist services under contract or with grant aid.

At a time of continuing austerity and cuts to public sector budgets voluntary organisations of all sizes report that demand for services is growing. However in the welter of constant and increasing demand it can prove difficult to know if your organisation is fully supporting people in poverty or instead stigmatising them.

Taking a lead from Children North East’s Poverty Proofing the School Day, Newcastle CVS has worked with its members to develop Poverty Proofing the Voluntary Sector using a set of questions  Poverty Proofing the Voluntary Sector enables staff, managers, trustees and volunteers to take a step back and ask are we doing all we can to tackle the direct impact poverty has on individuals, families and communities.