The pitfalls of Facebook

In a recent edition of the Get Connected Magazine from the Cambridgeshire Chamber of Commerce an article appeared on the pitfalls of Facebook and the importance of having a social media policy.

Nicola Cockerill from Buckles Solicitors LLP explains:

A recent national story reported the case of an employee who lost her job as a manager at a residential care home for posting pictures and videos on her Facebook page.

The post depicted a regular music night held at the care home, and whilst it showed both staff and residents enjoying the evening, it was also alleged to have breached the employers policies and procedures and this resulted in her employment of 21 years being terminated.

Nicola comments that as a solicitor she is continually surprised at these type of cases, and the fact that many organisations still fail to have relevant guidelines on social media that employees can follow.

Here’s some top tips for a good social media policy:

  • Organisations should ensure they have a robust social media policy in place which clearly details what is acceptable and what is not. If an organisation adopts a zero-tolerance policy to social media then this needs to be made clear.
  • Organisations should use plain language that employees will understand. Try to avoid jargon or highly complicated technical terms which could cause confusion or misunderstanding.
  • Ensure employees are aware of the social media policy which exists and ensure that at induction, this policy is clearly understood.
  • Ensure the social media policy is regularly reviewed and updated. Social media itself is a new and rapidly evolving world and the policy will need to evolve in tandem.
  • Ensure the social media policy is applied consistently amongst staff.

A template social media policy is shown here:

If organisations need advice or guidance when constructing a social media policy then this is offered free of charge at


New Guidance to Support Victims of Criminal Exploitation

The Children’s Society has published a toolkit for people working with children and young people trafficked for the purpose of criminal exploitation in relation to ‘County Lines’.

The following is taken from the toolkit introduction:

The term ‘county lines’ is becoming more widely recognised and used to describe situations where young people may be internally trafficked for the purpose of criminal exploitation. What is often less understood is the experiences a young person faces and the potential for them to be harmed through various forms of abuse and exploitation as a result. This toolkit hopes to address some gaps in knowledge and offer suggestions for supporting young people who are at risk of, or being trafficked for the purpose of criminal exploitation.

There is currently no legal definition of county lines or criminal exploitation and also very little guidance. Currently, the criminal exploitation of children and young people is often not fully understood by services working with young people which can impact on the response that a young person receives. Trafficking and criminal exploitation are forms of abuse and therefore should be afforded a safeguarding response. Often the visible symptoms of this abuse are responded to, meaning that many young people receive a criminal justice response and their safeguarding needs can be overlooked as a result.

This guidance has been produced by The Children’s Society as part of the National CSE/A Prevention Programme for England and Wales, in partnership with Victim Support. Please click here to view the document in PDF format.

Important Reminder..!!

Important reminder if your organisation works in Drug or Alcohol Recovery.

Cambridgeshire Adult Drug and Alcohol Treatment Services are currently being re-tendered. Interested parties are invited to a networking workshop on Friday 2 February, jointly hosted by Cambridgeshire County Council and Hunts Forum.

In order for potential bidders (some of which will be national organisations) to understand the local landscape and appreciate the wide range of third sector providers that work across Cambridgeshire, we would like to provide the opportunity for all parties to meet, network and cement links for future partnerships. This is a major opportunity for local third sector organisations/charities to publicise their work to potential bidders and explore the potential to work together and grow recovery support in Cambridgeshire.

The event will be taking place at the Hinchingbrooke Country side Centre:

The event runs from 1pm – 4pm but you will need to arrive 15 minutes beforehand.

We hope that you will be able to join us on 2 February to meet and network with current and potentially new colleagues. If you wish to book a space please URGENTLY e-mail by Close of Play Monday 29.01.2018.

Giving CECF a voice

Cambridge Ethic Community Forum (or CECF) is an umbrella organisation for Cambridge that provides racial equality and diversity services to individuals and groups, promoting an understanding between people from differing ethnic backgrounds.Their vision is a world where diverse communities live in harmony and every individual, regardless of race, nationality or ethnic origin, has the opportunity to realise their full potential.
The Forum’s website can be seen here:

Support Cambridgeshire has been working with the Forum to develop their skills, knowledge and confidence in the field of voice and representation, making them better able to exert influence and capacity over funding bodies and strategic stakeholders.
Forum members attended Support Cambridgeshire’s bespoke training on how to be a voluntary sector representative, which gave them a valuable set of tool-kits for increasing confidence levels when advocating, and an understanding of the sensitivities of negotiating a sector wide perspective in today’s current and challenging climate.

Perpetua Gora states:

I recently attended the course on Voice and Representation. I learned a lot, particularly about the time and commitment required to be a good representative.

Dulce Lewcock of the Women’s Voice for Africa states:

I attended the recent Voice and Representation course provided by Support Cambridgeshire. The trainer was very approachable and the information was easy to understand.

The course has given me increased confidence to represent my group.

If you feel you could benefit from this type of training please contact Russell at


Steel Bones

Steel Bones works to connect the amputee community by sending out support packs to all new amputees, promoting stump health news, healthy lifestyles and the provision of flexible career opportunities. It also arranges networking and fundraising events, and lobbies statutory agencies on behalf of amputees and their families.

The group has grown out of the lived experience of its founder members.

Eight years ago Leigh Joy-Staines lost his leg as a result of an operation.

In the aftermath of this life-changing event Leigh and his wife Emma felt isolated and struggled against a general lack of understanding among the general public and statutory agencies about what amputation means for an individual and a family. As a result of their experiences they decided to form Steel Bones.

Steel Bones contacted Cambridge CVS (one part of the Support Cambridgeshire Partnership) because they wanted to become a registered charity, seek funding and put in place policies and procedures to help them develop and support more beneficiaries.

Steel Bones met with a development worker to discuss registering as a charity. A full review of what Steel Bones wanted to achieve was undertaken, together with a consideration of what charitable structure would best suit their long term needs and aspirations. Options reviewed and discussed, Steel Bones decided to become a Charitable Incorporated Company (CIO) and have since registered with the Charity Commission.

Steel Bones have also been able to access support in the development of sound and robust policies and procedures, underpinned by valuable training on Safeguarding, Financial Management and How to write the best possible funding application, a vital advice giving session in today’s Charitable climate.

Steel Bones state:

The CCVS training sessions I have attended have been phenomenal and what I find fantastic is they bring their own considerable charity experience to the training. Plus, CCVS have been a great brainstorming resource and have been brilliant at giving us a fresh perspective. I know I can email the team anytime with questions and they come back to me quickly with superb advice giving our committee the assurance we need to push forward in the best way possible.

Lets champion our village halls

We all know that village halls are often the very centre of local communities across Cambridgeshire.

There are around 250 village halls and other community buildings across the County, playing a key role in reducing social isolation within rural communities.

90% of Cambridgeshire Village halls are run by dedicated volunteers, giving up countless hours to keeping the community facility open for all to use.

To celebrate this, the ACRE Network is running the first ever National Village Halls Week during the week of the 22nd January 2018.

Ways in which you can help:

Say a massive “Thank You” to those who run village halls by supporting the national campaign on social media over the next few weeks.

  • Twitter: @VillageHalls_wk and @cambsacre
  • Facebook: via@ACREnational and@cambsacre
  • Instagram: via@ACREnational

Use any or all of the following hashtags to connect your messages to the national campaign:

#VillageHallsWeek/ #ACRENetwork/#villagehalls/#communitybuildings/#ThankYou/#volunteers

Ask any local media to champion your local village hall, the services it offers and the volunteers dedicated to running it.

Consider whether you have the time, skills and energy to help run your local village hall?

If you run a local business, can you offer products, services or skills which could benefit the local community?

If you are interested in learning more please contact


Have a voice

The voluntary and community movement across Cambridgeshire consists of a myriad number of smaller organisations, some of whom often feel they have very little voice or influence.

As public funding declines, the voluntary sector is being asked to do more and deliver more, in a more effective and efficient manner.

The voluntary sector is also being asked, on occasions, to co-design services with statutory partners such as District and County commissioners.

In order to do this the sector requires a greater voice to exert more influence on funders, statutory partners and external stakeholders.

But how do we do that collectively..??

Support Cambridgeshire is offering bespoke Representation Training through Hunts Forum of Voluntary Organisations which enables individuals within organisations to represent the sector at County wide or District partnership boards.

If anyone is interested in widening their skill sets and developing a role within voice and representation, then please contact Russell Rolph the Development Manager for Support Cambridgeshire, in the first instance. Russell can be contacted at

The various partnership boards are held monthly, and therefore a role in voice and representation will be additional to any current work or volunteering obligations.




Volunteer for Cambridgeshire Fire and Rescue

Are you interested in helping to keep your local community safe?

Do you want to develop your skills and experience?

Do you want to support Cambridgeshire Fire and Rescue and help them make a difference?

If the answer is yes, then why not become a Community Champion?

As a representative of Cambridgeshire Fire and Rescue, Community Champions volunteer their time to deliver important fire safety messages within their community.

The Fire and Rescue service are keen to reach out into the wider community, and are looking for volunteers for whom English is their second language.

Please click here for a leaflet translated into Polish.

Please click here for a leaflet translated into Russian.

Please click here for a leaflet translated into Czech.

Please click here for a leaflet translated into Lithuanian.

If you are over 18 years of age and would like to get involved, or you require further information about these volunteer opportunities please contact Emma Prestidge:

Cambridgeshire Adult Drug and Alcohol Treatment Services: Invitation to Tender


Cambridgeshire Adult Drug and Alcohol Treatment Services are currently being re-tendered. Interested parties are invited to a networking workshop on Friday the 2nd February between 1PM and 4PM at Hinchingbrooke Countryside Centre.

The afternoon will include presentations by Joe Keegan of the Public Health Commissioning Team Manager (Drugs & Alcohol/Sexual Health) at Cambridgeshire County Council, and Julie Farrow, Chief Executive of Hunts Forum of Voluntary Organisations, and lead partner with Support Cambridgeshire. These will be followed by discussion workshops and networking opportunities.

Following consultation with service users, local and national stakeholders and the general public, the Council’s vision is for community-based recovery provision, including peer support, connecting individuals and families to local networks for recovery. It wants providers to work holistically to improve individual’s needs around housing, employment and mental health. It hopes that Cambridgeshire-based treatment providers and third-sector organisations can bring their local expertise to ensure that resources are targeted efficiently and successfully.

In order for potential bidders (some of which will be national organisations) to understand the local landscape and appreciate the wide range of third sector providers that work across Cambridgeshire, we would like to provide the opportunity for all parties to meet, network and cement links for future partnerships.

The new contract will start on the 1 October 2018.

We hope that you will be able to join us on the 2nd February 2018 to meet and network with current and potentially new colleagues.

If you wish to book a space, please email

Tea and Biscuits will be provided.

Plans for a new Business Board unveiled

A proposal to create a more effective model where businesses and the public sector work in partnership for the good of the region has recently been announced by the Cambridgeshire and Peterborough Combined Authority (CPCA).

Plans for a new ‘Business Board’ have been revealed by Mayor James Palmer which include a fundamental re-structure of the Greater Cambridge Greater Peterborough Local Economic Partnership (or LEP).

The Business Board will be the main feature of a powerful new partnership between the private and public sectors.

The Board will provide a forum for business leaders to give direction on the issues that are important to the fast-paced growth of the local economy.

For more information on the proposed changes click here:

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