Council support for ‘third sector’ in Northumberland

Northumberland County Council is consulting community and voluntary, or ‘third’ sector, organisations in the county about how it will provide support to them in the future.
 
The council currently provides funding to Northumberland Community and Voluntary Action (NCVA) to provide support services to the sector.  
 
Northumberland CVA helps to build capacity within the sector, to support volunteering initiatives and also to get messages out about the work that the sector does.  The current contract is due to end in March 2019.
 
The council has reviewed the current contract and arrangements, looked at future priorities for support, and considered what options could be pursued in taking this work forward.  Future options include:
 
  • Retaining the status quo of a single countywide Commission;
  • Commissioning on the basis of an agreed geographical split;
  • Commissioning on the basis of three individual support packages;
  • Delivering the commission within the council with the support of a facilitating fund; and
  • Withdrawing from the commission.
 
Voluntary and community sector organisations and representatives are being asked to look at a consultation document and give their views on the priorities and options identified.  They can also raise any concerns or questions they have.  
 
Councillor Cath Homer, cabinet member responsible for voluntary and community sector support at Northumberland County Council said:  “The ‘third’ sector play a vital role within our communities across Northumberland - and we want to make sure that we are providing the right levels and types of support.
 
“We welcome all feedback on the consultation document and on support from the council, and will gather all of this information together to help us to shape the type and level of support provided in the future.
 
“Similarly to all services supported by the council it is important that we review this, ensuring that it meets identified aims, and that we can balance providing for it alongside other vital frontline council services.”
 
The council is using a range of methods to consult those with an interest in this issue, including voluntary and community sector and social enterprise organisations, councillors, residents and other stakeholders within the community.
 
The consultation will run until Monday 5th March 2018, after which time responses will be analysed and a report on proposals for the future produced.
 
You can find the consultation document and response form in the Voluntary and Community Sector section of the website www.northumberland.gov.uk 
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