Ipswich Unemployed Action.

Campaigning for Unemployed Rights.

Charities, A4E and the Unemployment Business.

with 6 comments

Leading philanthropists have added to pressure on ministers to rethink plans to limit tax relief on charitable donations, by saying it “will deprive charities of much-needed funds”. The BBC reports.

Emma Harrison, owner of welfare-to-work company a4E , runs a charity, which she used to help a4E win government contracts” reports the latest Private Eye.

“The Foundation for Social Improvement (FSI) claims to be ‘all about supporting the small charities”, but A4E used it as ‘bid candy’ while trying to win Work programme contracts from the Department of Work and pensions (DWP) to help find jobs for the unemployed. A4E also used the supposedly independent charity to recruit other charities as A4E subcontractors”.

They further state,

“FSI recently won an £85,000 contract from Richmond on Thames council in South-west London for training and ‘capacity building’ in the borough’s voluntary sector – work previously done by the local Council for Voluntary Service (CVS)”

Charities, whether A4E fronts on not, have got into the Unemployment Business.

Just as SEETEC began as a small Essex company offering computer courses, that massively expanded with the New Deal and the Flexible New Deal, so too have some charities seen an opportunity in the Work Programme.

Papworth Trust (in Ipswich) is subcontracted from Ingeus. It started as a group helping people with disabilities. Now it is a Work Programme Provider.

What these groups actually do is unclear.

Their ‘training’ is ‘black box’ up to them.

With the funding structure for the Work Programme geared towards rewarding people who get jobs they drop those they think unlikely to find employment.

But they still snaffle a hefty fee for doing…..nothing for them.

So from A4E’s FSI to elsewhere Charities are not the unambiguous ‘good thing’ some people think.

We would be interested to know what Tax Relief Emma Harrison gets for contributing to her charitable upkeep  through Foundation for Social Improvement


Written by Andrew Coates

April 15, 2012 at 10:55 am

6 Responses

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  1. Ironically enough I know someone who goes Papworth Trust (on Work Programme) who has a disability and likely would fall into the remit of the charity’s objectives.

    Except, its a non-stop nightmare that one without a disability (I cannot mention specifics as PT will be able to work out who I mean) would find difficult:-

    1) Will only pay half travel costs, if and when they can be bothered to – this person cannot use the bus

    2) Non-stop bullying and sanction threats

    3) Constantly called in for job search without any form of support and more than half the occasions sent home due to what I can only imagine as a “supervisor” pulling a sickie (cannot be always off ill, surely?)

    4) Soul destroying, one person so confident and what a w2w provider would assume as “close to the labour market” – within 2 weeks of being on this programme is completely the opposite.

    I mean a little more than dis-hearted or deprived from freedom… some might argue that the disAbility was a barrier to work but now this person hasn’t even got the mind-state to be ready for work. This means the person has no chance of securing a job. The situation is now worse than before the Work Programme began.

    (Not creating the ultimate list… could go on…)

    It goes to show that regardless of any barriers you might have you can be mentally prepared for work, and any of these mandatory schemes removes that vital mind-state. Now the only chance this person has is being forced into a job position of the providers choosing; likely a subsidised position where the “employer” isn’t paying a penny… but then again its not much different than the “work placements” (workfare) this person is pending.

    Work Programme

    April 15, 2012 at 11:30 am

  2. 2) Non-stop bullying

    what sort ,id just show my love buy throwing the table at there face.

    they don’t like there staff to get broken for some reason but are allowed to treat u like shit if u are weak in the head.

    super ted

    April 15, 2012 at 11:19 pm

  3. The whole concept of “black box” training by work programme providers seems to be just an excuse for the DWP to absolve itself of any responsibility towards the welfare of those on the programme.

    Another potential kick in the teeth of people with disabilities is the prospect of Serco being awarded the contract for administering PIP, which is due to replace Disability Living Allowance. Dr Eoin Clarke in his blog “The Green Benches” draws attention to what seems to be a recruitment fair by Serco for Occupational Therapists on Thursday 19th April:


    (there is a link there to an unsolicited letter from Serco to the outraged OT who contacted Dr Clarke)
    Serco is deemed unethical by the Norwegian government and is on a list of companies banned from applying to the Norwegian Fund, which invests in long-term infrastructural projects. It has also been widely condemned for its ill treatment of child detainees. So I suppose it follows that our government think Serco is great.


    April 16, 2012 at 3:40 pm

  4. Indus Delta

    April 16, 2012 at 6:24 pm

  5. I know someone whose brother has learning difficulties and he has some very bad things to say about Papworth. So bad that he has taken it up with those who have local responsibility for checking on these things.

    Andrew Coates

    April 17, 2012 at 11:18 am

  6. super ted

    April 29, 2012 at 7:31 pm

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