Ben Hughes
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Ben’s involvement with the voluntary and community sector goes back over 20 years. Starting in environmental organisations (FOE and Greenpeace), Ben moved into community before turning to the advice sector where Ben trained as a welfare rights advocate, managed various CABx, ending up as Director of Blackfriars Advice Centre.

Latterly, as CEO of bassac, the social action membership network, Ben was active on a wide range of government task groups (Cabinet Office’ ChangeUp, Decc/Defra Ministerial Task Force on Climate Change and CLG’s Local Government Modernisation) and supported bassac’s members into a strong voice for social change. Always committed to collaborative working, Ben’s tenure of bassac concluded with the merger with DTA, to form Locality.

The CDFA offers Ben an exciting chance to combine his experience of community work, membership organisations and influencing government, in the varied and hugely important world of community finance; having spent 20 years attributing financial value to social impact, it’s now the other way round!

Entries by Ben Hughes

Can Credit Unions Really Compete With the Profits of Wonga?

(0) Comments | Posted 4 September 2013 | (10:03)

Wonga has just announced that it makes over £1million profit every week. It made almost four million loans last year and is now the UK's joint 14th biggest lender. Can anyone really compete them out of business? I believe that community finance could and should do just that.

Payday lenders...

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Don't Put Funding for Lending on Steroids, Put It on CDFIs

(0) Comments | Posted 15 March 2013 | (09:17)

Nick Clegg has spoken this week of the need to extend the Funding for Lending scheme and "put it on steroids". George Osborne, Vince Cable and the Bank of England are also desperate to get the scheme working for small businesses. In the last quarter of 2012 bank lending slumped...

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The £6billion Finance Gap

(0) Comments | Posted 12 February 2013 | (17:23)

There's a £6billion hole in our financial system. There are over eight million people, businesses and social enterprises that don't qualify for bank finance, but who need credit. That's according to new research just release by the CDFA.

It's the first time we've been able to quantify this unmet...

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Is There Really an Ethical Payday Lender?

(1) Comments | Posted 29 October 2012 | (23:00)

This year we saw public trust in banks dive to an all time low. Their former position as pillar of the community and stalwart of the high street has gone. In many communities you are more likely to find betting shops, pawnbrokers and payday lenders where your bank branch used...

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