The youth volunteering charity is to close with the loss of 20 jobs.

Voluntary sector figures have expressed sadness at the demise of the youth volunteering charity vinspired and rallied to support staff who are set to lose their jobs in the run-up to Christmas.

Third Sector reported yesterday that the youth volunteering charity, which was set up under the last Labour government with more than £100m of public funding, was to close with the loss of 20 jobs.

Its fate has prompted an outpouring of sympathy on Twitter and some caustic comments about a Labour-supported charity closing while the National Citizen Service scheme continues to enjoy significant funding from the current government.

Julie Bentley, chief executive of Action for Children, reflected the mood of many when she tweeted that vinspired had done “great things for youth volunteering”.

Staff will be made redundant on Tuesday. The insolvency firm Antony Batty & Company LLP will handle the winding-up.

Karl Wilding, director of public policy and volunteering at the National Council for Voluntary Organisations, said he hoped someone could be found to take over vinspired’s website, and added: “What a shitty time of year for 20 people to be at risk of redundancy”.

Matt Lent, chief executive of the education and youth charity Future First, encouraged vinspired staff to apply for vacancies at his organisation.

Anna Smee, chief executive of UK Youth, said it would “do all we can to offer our support”.

Debra Allcock Tyler, chief executive of the Directory of Social Change, tweeted:

The British Youth Council tweeted that vinspired had “championed youth social action for many years”.

But Gail Scott-Spicer, chief executive of the King’s College Hospital Charity, urged the sector to learn lessons rather than mourn.

The tweet, since deleted, called on sector leaders to “forge new business models, support bold decisions to create sustainability, press for core/unrestricted funding”.

David Reed, director of the youth social action charity Generation Change, said vinspired’s demise highlighted the need for strategic thinking about infrastructure.

Some members of the Russell Commission, whose report in 2005 led to vinspired’s creation, tweeted their sadness.

Richard Harries, a civil servant at the time, posted: “It survived the transition to the coalition government, but NCS was the last nail.”

Others were quick to highlight the contrast in fortunes between vinspired and NCS.

David Pearce, director of fundraising and marketing at Dignity in Dying, tweeted: “Created as a government project under Labour, undermined by another under Conservatives.”

Steve Smith, head of fundraising at Action for ME, said vinspired “seemed to deliver far more for young people than NCS”

Jessica Taplin, chief executive of vinspired, told Third Sector: “I’m thankful for all the supportive messages. It’s great to see the sector rallying to show support.”

Source: Third Sector