Working for a charity isn't just about helping people – it's about being accountable for donors' money and operating in an ethical way. Much of the jargon and the acronyms represent the large number of organisations involved. These sector-specific organisations and the complex regulatory framework in which they operate is all part of the world in which charities and not-for-profit bodies work.
Understanding these will help you demonstrate your interest in the sector.
CIO: charitable incorporated organisation – a type of legal structure for charities.
CSR: corporate social responsibility – work undertaken by some businesses to support local communities and voluntary organisations.
DfID: Department for International Development – part of the UK government that manages Britain's aid to poor countries.
ESV: employer supported volunteering – voluntary activity organised and sometimes funded by companies.
IAG: information, advice and guidance – information for members of the public that helps them decide make decisions about their lives. Provided by many charities and advice organisations.
NCVO: National Council for Voluntary Organisations. Umbrella organisation for the voluntary and community sector in England.
NGO: non-governmental organisation – not-for-profit organisation funded by private donors and delivering welfare and international development.
Office for Civil Society: department within the Cabinet Office overseeing charities, social enterprises and voluntary organisations.
TSO: third sector organisation – the third sector is an alternative name for the voluntary sector (the first and second sectors being the private and public sectors respectively).
VCS: voluntary and community sector – another name for the not-for-profit or third sector.