Here’s a final list of top pro bono and free resources for third sector organisations, as provided by Charity Connect, an online networking community of around 20,000 professionals working in the charity sector. Each resource has been thoroughly researched to ensure it is among the best available resource or supplier of its type. The list is particularly geared towards smaller charitable organisations whose networks and resources are less developed. To see the full list, go to the Charity Connect website.
LibreOffice is a popular, free software suite with function and user interface substantially identical to Microsoft Office and compatible with it, for MacOS, Windows, and Linux, among other operating systems. It includes programs for word processing, spreadsheets and calculations, presentations, vector graphics, charts, databases, and formula editing. Vetted by TechRadar and ZDnet, the software is updated regularly to remain compatible with Windows Office and is available for direct download from the LibreOffice website.
Established in 2016, CITA is an easy-to-use platform which matches charities with turnover of less than £5M to IT professionals seeking to donate their time and expertise to the third sector. Typical projects mentioned on their website include building a new website, migrating to a new software system and setting up a database.
With 9 million members, divided into local sub-communities, Freecycle is the biggest consumer-to-consumer marketplace of free items in the world. Members can list items they’re seeking or wish to donate. Donors and seekers communicate directly to coordinate pickup and collection. Since this is a consumer network, items on Freecycle range from cat toys to computers. For charities, this is a great forum for sourcing domestic items.
Globechain is the UK’s biggest B2B reuse platform giving charities, non-profits and social enterprises access to thousands of free items donated by charities like Nando’s, NHS and Radisson among many others. Donation categories include office equipment, retail displays, fixtures, and fittings, medical equipment, construction materials and domestic items. To reserve an item, you must create an account, then make a request for an item via the website. The system then puts you in touch with the donating company so you can work out details of pickup and collection. You can also create a custom alert for any item that you may be looking for — a very useful tool, as items can be requested quickly. This site is great for bulk quantities of professional, technical items used in a business or institutional setting, for example, “twenty conference tables”, “15 wheelchairs”.
5. Trustee Recruitment The National Council for Voluntary Organisations (NCVO) offers a trustee resource which allows you to advertise and view trustee vacancies.There are a number of other sources you can use to find out about volunteering opportunities, including Do-it, which is a national database of volunteering opportunities in the United Kingdom: www.do-it.org.uk/.
The Small Charities Coalition is a charity which helps set up and supports networks of charity trustees and which also runs Trustee Finder, a free national network of trustees and management committee members.
Further guidance on trustee recruitment is available on the GOV.UK website.