More than 70 groups learn together at funding conference

More than 100 people representing 79 charity groups from across Wiltshire and Swindon came together at our annual funding conference.

Delegates were given masterclasses from experts at a variety of workshops, as well as inspired by speakers including Jamie Feilden, the founder of Jamie's Farm, at the Corn Exchange in Devizes.

The day, sponsored by Monahans Accountants, is part of the Wiltshire Community Foundation's mission to support and nurture charities in Wiltshire by giving them access to expert advice and inspiration that they could otherwise not afford.

The workshops provided valuable insight and advice on strategic planning, charity funding, accounting, marketing and governance.

Chief executive Rosemary Macdonald welcomed the delegates and said the huge turnout was evidence of the vibrancy, strength and depth of work being done across the county.

Jane Butler, the community foundation's Head of Grants strategy, explained its  grant programmes and outlines how it gave away £1.2 million in 2017/18, Tim Temple, of the Big Lottery, spoke its work. Benjamin Johns of the Regional Cyber Crime Unit had some advice on prevention and stark warnings about the dangers of lax security.

Mr Feilden, the day's final speaker, told the inspirational story of Jamie's Farm, near Box, and explained how it changes the lives of the young people from deprived inner city areas that it hosts.

Mrs Macdonald thanked the sponsor, the speakers and the workshop leaders. "It was a brilliant day and we were fortunate to have some really knowledgeable people who shared their expertise. I'd like to thank them all, and the community foundation staff who worked so hard to put it all together."

Grants team members Nicola Hillier, Karen Pugh and Mrs Butler were the organisers of the day. "They worked really hard," said Mrs Macdonald.

The conference is just one of the ways the community foundation supports charities in Wiltshire and Swindon through its funder+ programme. It organises regular workshops on a variety of essential areas that affect charities and organises events linking funders with causes. For more details see our events calendar here.

Pictured above: Nicola Hillier and Karen Pugh had a warm welcome for more than 100 delegates

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