The late twentieth century saw charities grow from timid service deliverers into major providers with campaigning teeth. What caused this? How did they gain confidence and strength? In this fascinating history, examined through the eyes of RNIB from 1970 to 2010, Ian Bruce examines the internal drivers and the external socio-political environment that allowed and encouraged this explosion.
Bruce’s experience of leading a charity at the forefront of this change, and his participation in the wider charity sector for fifty years as both activist and academic, gives him an unsurpassed understanding of what happened and why. His first-hand knowledge will speak to charity workers as well as academics, covering themes such as the rise of beneficiary power against patronising providers; the change from welfare to rights; the shift from the medical to the social model of disability; and the adoption of social welfare and business professionalisms such as Strategic Planning and Charity Marketing. Today’s charities have much to learn from the successes and mistakes of this dynamic period.