Our top 10 monthly reads for charities – July

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And just like that, it’s nearly August. Here were our favourite charity- and charity-related reads from July:

No more ‘computer says no’, Barnardo’s
Everyone at Barnardo’s is getting a new computer. Why? Dan Fryer discusses why they’ve switched to G-Suite, upgrading their wi-fi and kitting their frontline staff with new technology – and it’s not just because it’s cheaper in the long-term.

Meaningful engagement: do you need a social strategy? Charity Comms
Social media: everyone wants it, but few charities understand how to use it. Lisa breaks down why you need a social strategy, and how social media is different from what you probably think it is (hint: it starts with building communities).

(c) Change.org

Crafting Headlines for Change: The Art and Science of Petition Titles, Change.org
We love a good in-depth data dive, so we really enjoyed this piece by Change.org, who rightly put it: “Words, structure, tone, and length all matter, and everything needs to come together in a very limited space.”

Integrating Supporter Communications, More Onion
More Onion hits the nail on the head when they say that your supporter communications should revolve around the needs and desire of your supporters – not reflect the internal structures and silos of your organisation. This report is a great breakdown of the steps you need to take to get there.

The Hidden Cost of Not Investing in Progressive Talent, Cultivate
Ah, that old chestnut: charities can’t find anyone with the right skills, can’t afford them when they do come along, and then don’t train people to fill those skills gaps. And our upward mobility is still dependent on access – not on merit. How much do we lose by not investing in our people?

(c) The Guardian

Urgency is what’s demanded by young activists. But they’re met with crumbling complacency, The Guardian
Recently, we’ve been having lots of conversations here at Platypus at about the state of campaigning in the UK. With the lightning-fast ascendency of movements like the Climate March and Extinction Rebellion, it’s clear that there is a public hunger for grassroots action. Are charities moving to fill this gap, or have we become complacent too?

US philanthropists vow to raise millions for climate activists, The Guardian
On that note, there’s nothing that confirms this public hunger more than cash support – and US philanthropists are putting their money where their mouths are by committing £500,000 through the Climate Emergency Fund. 

Start Somewhere, Institute for Voluntary Action Research
Small organisations are hungry for technology that helps them to be more relevant and accessible – but the barriers are more practical than they are psychological. IVAR’s research gives small charities tips on how to overcome these barriers and get funding buy-in.

Are personal stories too personal? Clinks
Clinks found that, when they told criminal justice stories with a human element, focusing too much on the personal stories diverted readers from thinking about the societal context and policy implications. This is a great discussion on using context when telling stories.

Culture is our strategy, Department of Education
The DoE noticed that their focus on delivery had significant impact on workplace culture – so they’re making an active effort to build culture into their everyday work. 

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