Welcome to the Advice Dorset Partnership E-News bulletin. The bulletin is circulated every two weeks and will bring you news and information relating to the advice sector in Bournemouth, Dorset and Poole. If you would like to send anything out via the bulletin, for this and all other enquiries about the Advice Dorset Partnership contact caroline@caidorset.org.uk

Events: Advice Partnership  and other organsations

Armed Forces Community Careers and Lifestyle event at Kingston Maurward College.

WEDS 24 APRIL , 11am – 7pm , Flyer:


Please feel free to circulate information about this event across your local networks, especially if you can  target Armed Forces communities, their families and veterans through your usual social media networks / communications.

Routes to Inclusion: Data and Mapping. Helen Dobson and James Beecher from Citizens Online gave a presentation of their work on mapping the data story for Dorset on the 29th of Januar;y  here is their presentation:Citizens Online Switch Dorset Jan 2019.

The next session is on the 1st May, where Citizens Online will be discussing their findings and asking us what we think the priorities should be. To sign up to the session, please follow the Eventbrite link: https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/digital-routes-to-inclusion-in-dorset-whats-next-tickets-56569575122  – we will receive a notification when you’ve signed up, so you don’t need to print anything off.

Job Opportunities in local Citizens Advice offices

There are no local Citizens Advice vacancies at this time for national jobs click here.

Job Opportunities in other Agencies

Please email us if you have a job opportunity you wish to advertise.

News and Useful Information

“No DSS!”: Do you have clients who have struggled to  rent privately because they are claiming benefits (UC / housing benefit).

The use of the ‘no DSS’ phrase shows just how long this has been an  issue (1980s….?!) The  Work and Pensions Committee has  just held an oral evidence session with claimants, landlords, lettings agents, property portals and mortgage lenders to explore the use of “no DSS” clauses and their effect on claimants. However the client survey is still live on the parliament website, here:   survey

NEWS FROM TAX HELP FOR OLDER PEOPLE AND TAX AID: HMRC to delay sending out penalty notices

As many people are aware, the deadline for filing the 17/18 tax return was the 31st January 2019 (31st October if on paper). While most would have met these filing deadlines there are some that, for variety of reasons, have not filed their return or have forgotten.

In previous years HMRC would have sent the late filing penalty notices in February, which often would act as a prompt to those that had not yet filed, enabling them to avoid even higher penalties. However HMRC has announced that this year, due to the expected high call volume as the UK leaves the EU, penalty notices will not be sent out until the end of April. As daily penalties come into effect from 1st May, the delay in sending out the notices could mean that more people find out very late that they have missed the deadline and have been charged a penalty, leaving very little time to submit the return before more penalties are charged.

If you have clients that need help with an outstanding tax return or filing an appeal, please contact either Tax Help (for those over 60 or who are retired) or TaxAid (for those below 60) on the numbers below for assistance. You can also view an example penalty notice here with helpful information on what can be done next.

Don’t forget: It is important to file the tax return as soon as possible as HMRC is unable to consider an appeal for late filing while the return is outstanding.

From Tax Help for Older People: Tax Tips for March 2019 With information about tax codes and allowances can be found here.

CPAG newsletter: Spotlight on the Early Warning System

Speaking truth to power: Kelly-Marie Jones, one of CPAG’s welfare rights advisers, recently gave evidence to the Work and Pensions Committee’s inquiry on universal credit natural migration.

Natural migration is where people move onto universal credit because of a change in their circumstances – for example if they get a job and want to move from jobseeker’s allowance to working tax credit they will have to claim universal credit instead.  CPAG’s concerns about the ongoing delays and errors in the system at a time when claimants are having to deal with the major life changes that have required the move.  CPAG say that these concerns and others mean that natural migration should be suspended.  For the full news letter click here.

The Local Government and Social Care Ombudsman has issued a good practice guide to help adult social care providers improve their services.

The new guide, ‘Caring about Complaints’, which shares lessons from complaints dealt with by the Ombudsman, gives real-life examples of the common problems the organisation sees – including a lack of clear information about fees, charges and contracts, problems with billing and invoices, ensuring people’s belongings are looked after properly, and dealing with challenging behaviour from friends and relatives – and offers some ways to avoid the pitfalls.

The guidance also includes a copy of the single complaints statement, ‘Quality Matters’, designed to help adult social care providers set out what service users, their families and representatives can expect when making a complaint. The guide can be downloaded from the website here.

Healthy Homes Dorset: Loft and cavity wall insulation, and energy advice. More information here.

Other Training

West Howe Community Enterprises is hosting the following invaluable training session:

‘Looking After The Money’ Training Session – 29 March 2019  Steve Place (Senior Advisor BCVS) will be running this session on Friday 29th March 2019,  10am – 12.30pm (Registration from 9.30am), St Michael’s Church, Upper Hall, Poole Road, Bournemouth, BH2 5QU

This session will be of great use to Treasurers, committee members and staff of voluntary/community groups and charities operating in Bournemouth or Poole who want to understand how best to keep accounts, how to present financial reports and generally look after your money. For more information and how to book click here and here.

The Volunteer Centre and Dorset Community Action: second Trustee training session:

 Trustee Training Part 2 – Being Effective and Compliant: 27 March 2019

This 3 hour course is designed to support trustees effectively fulfil their role and provide good governance.  The course will ensure participants understand:

  1. Being effective as a trustee and as a board of trustees
  2. Decision making
  3. Being legal
  4. Managing Risk
  5. Identifying and putting in place the right policies and procedures

Part 2 of the course is designed for trustees or committee members of all types of voluntary and community groups, from community libraries to pre-schools and lunch clubs. It will provide practical tools and information to support trustee boards provide good governance for their organisations success.

Date: 27th March 2019, 9.45am registration for 10am start through to 1.30pm (includes coffee break)
Venue: CLaRC, Wimborne

Cost: £45 pp for voluntary and community groups, £55 pp for statutory groups
Refreshments will be provided.

To book, please click here 

The Volunteer Centre Dorset are organising a Safeguarding training session for volunteers and organisations

The course will enable participants to recognise and respond to vulnerable adults who may be at risk of harm . Participants will be made aware of their responsibilities within the context of their roles and organisations and generally explore the risks posed to those in our communities who are less able to protect themselves from harm . The day will be interactive and fast paced with plenty of room for questions to be discussed.

The course cost is £40 per person, and includes refreshments (Tea, Coffee and Biscuits).

Monday 8th April 2019, Weymouth 09.00 – 16.30, at Safewise, Weymouth community Fire Station, Radipole Lane, Weymouth, Dorset DT4 0QF.   If you would like to attend, click here to complete a booking form.  Please save and email the completed form to training@volunteeringdorset.org.uk

Due to popular demand, YMCA Bournemouth is delivering further training sessions in 2019.


Thursday 4th April 2019, 9:30 AM – 3:30 PM. £45 per learner


Thursday 25th April 2019, 10:00 AM – 2:00 PM. 25 per learner.


Monday 13th, Tuesday 14th and Wednesday May 2019, 9:30 AM – 4:00 PM. £170 per learner.

Venue for all these courses:The Hinton Room, YMCA Bournemouth, Delta House, 56 Westover Road, Bournemouth, BH1 2BS.

If you are interested booking a place onto any of the above courses, please contactHeather Chandler, Business Development and Marketing Assistant at YMCA Bournemouth.  Tel: 01202 290451 Ext: 4005

Email heather.chandler@ymcabournemouth.org.uk

Research and reports

High Cost Credit – Overdrafts: Citizens Advice have just submitted evidence on problems repaying overdrafts, and the charges incurred. People who are socially disadvantaged  eg. lone parents, people with  a mental health issue, are often the most affected.  Read the submission here


Traingle Trust 1949 Fund: This grant scheme provides core funding to support specialist carer organisations to implement a step change in their development and therefore build increased sustainability for the future. The Trust is ‘open minded’ on the type of initiatives applicants may wish to develop in order to increase their sustainability.

Grants are available from £10,000 up to £80,000 for a duration of six months to three years. The amount of funding requested must be proportional to the development that will be undertaken. A maximum of £30,000 per year or £2,500 per month for smaller developments can be requested.

Registered charities, not-for-profit social enterprises and community interest companies that are working within the UK and have a UK office can apply. This funding is only available to specialist carer organisations rather than those with a broader remit which run carer projects. There is a two-stage application process. The deadline for stage one applications is 7 May 2019 (noon).

Read more HERE

Calor’s Rural Community Fund: Grants of up to £5k for rural community projects (with the opportunity to raise more through crowdfunding). Apply by 29 April. Criteria:

  • It exists for the benefit of the wider community and not of the individual
  • It has been in existence for a minimum of 6 months; and is a charity or a not-for-profit organisation
  • The funding applied for is equal to 50% or more of the total project cost
  • The funding is being used for renovations, redecorating, equipment, or new LPG heating systems
  • It is capable of completion within 12 months of the date of the grant if successful
  • It is in a rural off mains gas location in the UK and is for the benefit of an off-grid rural community in England, Scotland or Wales
  • It has a clear deliverable objective
  • The systems are in place to ensure finances are well managed
  • It operates on a non-discriminatory basis and is non-political

Read more here

Edward Gostling Foundation: Grants to UK charities with the aim of enhancing the quality of life for people in need, specifically those on low income who have a physical or mental disability or those with long-term illness. Two funding streams are now available:

  • Small Grants of less than £5,000.
  • Large Grants of more than £5,000.

Applications must address at least one of the four themes of the Foundation:

  • Health and wellbeing: to maintain, improve and advance the health and welfare of people living with disabilities and/or long-term illnesses.
  • Independent living at home: to support people who wish to remain living in their own home for as long as is practically possible.
  • Respite: either for the person living with a disability (or long-term illnesses) or the carer to access sports and leisure activities or simply enjoy fun, friendship and the opportunity to socialise and share with others who may be in a similar situation.
  • Transition: to provide fundamental life skills and infrastructure necessary to allow people to reach their full potential in all areas of life and to become a valued member of their local community.

Find out more: HERE grants may be applied for at anytime.