Strengthening London’s voluntary sector

Aims of the programme

London’s voluntary, community and social enterprise sector organisations play a vital role in delivering services to vulnerable and marginalised groups. They advocate on behalf of people who might otherwise ‘fall through the cracks’. The sector is well recognised by all main political parties as an essential element of what makes a good society.

London has the UK’s highest concentration of charitable organisations and includes many household-names. However, the majority of organisations have small staff teams (or are entirely volunteer run), and annual incomes of less than £1,000,000.The funding and regulatory environments they work within remain complex. Managerial and governance requirements can be onerous, and it is important that organisations can access high-quality support-services in key technical areas including fundraising, impact assessment, and HR.

We want to help maintain specialist, high quality, support-services working with London’s voluntary, community, and social enterprise organisations, either on a borough, cross-borough, or pan-London basis: services that make a demonstrable difference to the capacity of those front-line charitable organisations with which they work.

Our programme outcomes

We want to fund work which will achieve one or more of the following:

  • more organisations with the skills to improve their volunteer management
  • more organisations with improved capabilities in monitoring, evaluation and impact reporting
  • more organisations with improved skills in financial management
  • more equalities organisations with enhanced voice, advocacy and representation skills.

What will we fund?

Second-tier support services that:

  • enable voluntary, community and social enterprise sector organisations to improve
    a) volunteer management
    b) monitoring, evaluation and impact reporting
    c) financial management
  • strengthen the voice, advocacy and representation skills of equalities organisations
  • support brokerage services which put professionally skilled volunteers in touch with charities who need technical, pro-bono assistance.

Good practice

Please show how you:

  • track the cascade benefit of the support-service you provide
  • involve the feedback of organisations you support in the continuous improvement of your services
  • improve access to your services by smaller, less well-resourced organisations
  • share your learning with the wider sector