In 2020, PBE has helped more charities in more ways than ever before. We’ve engaged directly with over 120 charities and social enterprises this year – well over a third more than in 2019 – and have amplified the voices of thousands more through our online events and regular Covid Charity Tracker. Through our project, policy and research work we are starting to fill important data gaps across the sector and shining a light on the societal benefits charities are creating every day.

It is more important than ever that charities are able to measure, understand and communicate their impact.

72 volunteers engaged, 120 charities engaged with, 54 projects worked on

PBE continued to offer its three ‘traditional’ forms of volunteer-led projects in 2020: advisory, analysis and advocacy, completing 18 projects with 23 ongoing.

Following a successful pilot at the end of 2019, PBE further developed its flagship training and advisory workshop over the course of 2020. ‘Unlocking Impact’ is a fully interactive half-day workshop aimed at charity leaders and impact/delivery specialists interested in exploring an economic approach to measuring and valuing the impact of their work. 53 people have attended.

Recognising that charities were facing unprecedented pressures, we decided to provide a new ‘fast-track’ volunteer programme, rapidly matching economist volunteers with organisations seeking flexible economic and data support. 24 volunteers have helped 13 charities since April.

What charities have to say about our projects9.1/10 average Net Promoter Score;  “PBE provided a quick, easy process. We received high quality help, and thoughtful and generous interactions,” – Our Time ; “The support provided by PBE was excellent and well-tailored to meet the size and scale of

PBE has shone a light on the social sector

We were delighted to be able to establish a new Research & Policy function in 2020, complementing our project work with a new focus on ‘bigger picture’ issues affecting the social sector and UK wellbeing. In doing so, we have cemented PBE’s position as a collaborative partner in the charity sector, allowing us to offer insight to sector groups working together through the crisis.

The regular Covid Charity Tracker survey has been a key output. Undertaken in partnership with the Charity Finance Group and Chartered Institute of Fundraising, it has allowed PBE to shine a light on changes over the course of the pandemic in charity sector demand, employment and funding gaps. The figures are regularly used by sector partners, politicians and media outlets. 

Supported by the Law Family Charitable Foundation, we have also established the major, two-year Law Family Commission on Civil Society. The commission was officially launched by the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport and the Shadow Minister for the Cabinet Office. It is designed to explore how to unleash the potential of civil society in the 2020s.

Looking ahead to 2021, we plan to continue to scale up what we do

Since 2009, PBE has helped over 700 organisations, and in 2021 we want to do much more, with three key priorities:

  • Driving improvement in wellbeing. Keep working with a range of charities on young people, mental health and poverty, and helping to apply wellbeing as a standard measurement.
  • Making our expertise even more accessible. Establish fast track support as a permanent service and enhance our online resources to supplement our one-to-one services.
  • Using our evidence to empower the sector. Develop a robust evidence base on value of the social sector, explore practical policy opportunities and publish data on the state of the sector.

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