Lloyds about to launch funding for Deaf and Disabled people organisations

Lloyds Bank Foundation’s funding programme dedicated to d/Deaf and Disabled people’s organisations will open in July. Eligible charities will be able to apply for a three-year unrestricted grant of £75,000 alongside capacity building support.  They are requesting that groups sign up via this link to receive an email notification when the programme goes live, or follow them on social media (Twitter, Linkedin, or Facebook) where we will announce when funding is open.

Vision for Volunteering – Update

The Vision for Volunteering is a movement to create a diverse, innovative, ambitious, equitable and person-centred future for volunteering. It aims to set out a view of what volunteering needs to look like, and how this will make volunteers feel about their roles, by 2032. More than 350 people from more than 300 organisations contributed to the Vision for Volunteering, which is led by NAVCA, NCVO, Volunteering Matters, and the Association of Volunteer Managers.

The Vision for Volunteering programme team are leading a range of in-person and virtual workshops throughout June and July to inspire you and your organisations to bring Vision for Volunteering to life in your communities. The workshops will be places for you to share what practical tools and resources will best help you with making the Vision a reality.

Find out more on the Vision for Volunteering events webpage.

DCMS launch VCSE Contract Readiness Programme

In April, DCMS announced the launch of the VCSE Contract Readiness Programme, a £900,000 support package to enable VCSEs in England better compete for government contracts.

The programme primarily provides fully funded and tailored training to VCSEs interested in bidding for public contracts. It also offers public sector commissioners ways to increase their awareness and understanding of VCSEs, ultimately to enable effective partnerships. The programme will run until March 2025.

Delivery partners are the School for Social Entrepreneurs (SSE) in consortium with Social Enterprise UK (SEUK) and Voice4Change England. Part of the programme is the new Public Services Hub. Hosted on SEUK’s website, the hub contains resources for VCSEs and public sector commissioners.

If you are an interested VCSE organisation, please sign up via the SSE webpage, and if you are a commissioner, please contact monika.kawai@dcms.gov.uk.

Charities Act Changes

The next tranche of provisions from the Charities Act 2022 are expected to be effective in June 2023. This includes changes to how charities sell land and access permanent endowments.

The implementation plan has changed and some provisions that were originally planned to commence in June 2023 (Phase 2) will now be implemented by the end of 2023 (Phase 3). These are sections 18, 23, 24 and Schedule 1.

For further details, please see the Charities Act 2022 implementation plan webpage

VCS Rep Report : Improvement and Reform Committee IRC) – April 2023

Title of Group Improvement & Reform Committee (IRC)
Date 21/04/2023 Reps names Michael Firek
Summary of agenda items / key themes discussed

–       Board Assurance Framework (BAF)

–       Draft ICS Digital Strategy

–       Reports from feeder groups

Planned Care Board

Unplanned Care Board

System Strategy & Planning Group

Quality Improvement & Transformation Group (previously Transformation Hub)

Diagnostics Board


Implications for the VCS


Draft ICS Digital Strategy – attached (Presentation pages 16 – 34, Strategy pages 35 – 66).

–       The strategy was presented by Hadleigh Stoller from Healthcare Innovation Consortium.

–       MF asked, How will the VCSE be able to contribute in this area? Governance put in place, access to systems, training, voice and input into DEG or other key delivery / strategic groups?

–       The digital engagement to date is probably contribution to the Joy app and some specific work / services that are using SystmOne. Is this something that we can escalate or scale up? To be an effective system partner we would need to ensure we are or can be integrated.

–       Dorothy Gregson advised that the NHS App is central to digital inclusion. Patients can opt / choose to share their information with VCSE through this. Are our services doing this? Should we be doing this and supporting other VCSE to do so? I’m not sure what this looks like.

–       The following news article was shared by Hadleigh after the meeting – https://www.digitalhealth.net/2023/04/the-nhs-app-is-a-critical-tool-in-tackling-the-elective-care-backlog/


–       Hadleigh shared his email address and invited MF to arrange a call to discuss whether there is a need to invite VCSE to contribute into the DEG.

Date, time and venue of next meeting and name of representative who will be attending

Friday 16th June 2023 – 9.00 – 10.45. MS Teams.


VCS Rep Report : ICS Supply, Information and Planning (SIP) – April 2023

Title of Group Supply, Information and Planning (SIP)

This is the group that the R&R sub-group reports into and SIP reports to Local People Board

Date 19 April 2023 Reps name  Sharon Allen, Arthur Rank Hospice Charity
Summary of agenda items / key themes discussed

Action and Decision Log: AHP (Allied Health Professionals) Faculty funding ends May, will limit capacity for contribution. Carol Anderson taken action to talk to ICB, looking at alternative solutions ie releasing colleagues to rotate chair. Sally Drake raised point that this approach excludes LA and vol sec as we don’t have leads in this way.

Risk Log: There is a major piece of work ongoing around supply of affordable accommodation for colleagues working in care and health. This started as an issue recognised in relation to international recruits but has widened to all parts of the system.

Update from Working Groups:

Recruitment and Retention: see separate update report. Legacy practitioner – applicable for vol sec, (ARHC already expressed interest), Pastoral support, will share information and access with sector.

Workforce Planning: the importance of the data issue discussed in previous feedback reports is exemplified here, the data available (which does not include our sector yet) is used to inform the Joint Forward Plan which all colleagues should read and comment on. Ade Tams new Deputy Chief People Officer has experience from a previous role of capturing voluntary sector data so I’m having a discussion with him about this. Rebecca Tuten who is leading on the work is keen to engage and attend a meeting of the Health Alliance.

Education and Development: 10 July hold the date for Innovations and Education, Health and Care Workforce, more details to follow.

ARU Destination report, a fuller discussion will happen at the next meeting, ARU has provided a report on where graduates go on completion of their studies as there is concern that our system is not fully benefitting from the investment.

VCS Rep Report : Recruitment and Retention Sub-Group – April 2023

Title of Group Recruitment & Retention Sub-group of Local People Board
Date 17 April 2023 Reps name  Sharon Allen, Arthur Rank Hospice Charity
Summary of agenda items / key themes discussed

Review ToR and Milestones

Action Plan and SRO’s: each provider asked to provide recruitment plans, will be sharing of good practice. The meeting was focused on agreeing the top three or four priorities (there are currently eight) in the Action Plan.

NHS E High Impact Interventions, Next Steps and Provider Plans (NHS providers only)

Co-chair for the group

Implications for the VCS

When collation of recruitment plans happens, see what our sector can learn, adapt and contribute from these (ARHC has shared our People Plan as a vol sec example).

What do we want in terms of joint recruitment initiatives? Move to on-line? And identifying risk points of colleagues leaving at 6 and 9 months and what we can collaboratively do to address this.

What involvement does our sector want in work ongoing with Anglia Ruskin University on innovations in R&R?

What engagement do we want in international recruitment either as a pipeline for our own workforces or to support with pastoral care for international recruits to the NHS?

Accommodation project – how do we want to be engaged with this?

Can we provide turnover rates for HCSW (Healthcare support worker) or equivalent?

Do we have views on areas of greatest clinical risk (probably only impacts a small number of sector orgs)

Adult Social Care has secured regional funds for ethical recruitment (re international recruitment). The meeting agreed to take this off this Action Plan for this group as Chris Hill (chair) sits on the oversight group for this work so will provide updates.


Any responses to any of the above points, or requirements for further information, please contact Sharon.

Invite Rebecca Tuten who is leading on the data project to a Health Alliance meeting to discuss our sector needs, capacity so that we have a system workforce data set not just NHS.

Date, time and venue of next meeting and name of representative who will be attending

15 May, 14.00 – 15.30, via Teams, Sharon attending

VCS Rep Report : ICS Local People Board – April 2023

Meeting attended: Local People Board

VCS Representatives: Sharon Allen, Arthur Rank Hospice Charity, Deborah Katznelson, COPE

Date of meeting: 23 April 2023

Summary of agenda items / key themes discussed:

Leadership compact review and ICB delivery framework; how to ensure this is lived in working with partners. Developing programme of activity to ensure compact becomes second nature – links to work of Leadership & partnership sub-group. The Wall (included in Joint Forward Plan)

– each of the ‘bricks’ has been allocated to a member of ICB Exec Team.

BAF (Board Assurance Framework) to note

Industrial Action review, our system was disproportionately impacted due to number of organisations in our system who met the threshold for strike action. Lot of work undertaken to plan for and seek to mitigate impact on patients. Impact for patients on planned appointments, procedure, diagnostic, surgery as well as people seeking emergency care. Looking at learning and what can be taken forward into future ways of working. Discussion of impact on team dynamics, morale, moral injury etc.

Workforce planning review, NHS submission although does reference VSCE and Local Authority. Submitting breakeven financial plan (bringing down significant deficit but plan includes £50m unmitigated risk)

Doctors in primary care, opportunity to become an interested site for non GP medics to work in primary care (no additional funding). Lots of interesting discussion, early days, lots more debate to be had, particularly with Medical Directors and to risk assess implications and mitigations. Noted as a good opportunity to test the hypotheses through a system lens.

SIP update:

R&R (please see separate updates provided from this sub-groups)

EDI – Staff survey results still show concerns re experience of colleagues from minoritized racial backgrounds, Regional Lead joining soon to support with actions, Beyond Difference programme will be developed, developing a toolkit to tackle institutional racism.

Leadership – changing culture and embedding compassionate leadership, reintroducing Stepping in to my shoes programme, interplay of culture of integrated team working (several programmes coming on stream including; Civility Saves Lives, Above Difference, Psychological Safety/Just Culture and Quality Improvement Approach), System relationships and collaboration and Leadership.

CPICS ARU collaboration, this work follows on from a workshop held in February, focused on innovation in R&R (lead Ade Tam, Deputy Chief People Officer), portability ED & Training. A symposium to develop ideas is being held 10 July.

Forward plan:

June – Health and Wellbeing and Efficient and Effective Ways of Working

Aug – Education Learning and Development

Oct – Creating Healthy Communities and Workforce aligned with service transformation

Implications for the VCS

Think about how we also embed the Leadership compact priorities within our organisations aligned to our own values and approaches and in our dealings with partners across the system.

Industrial action impact could then impact on voluntary sector organisations with increased demand?

What can we do to support more efficient working across the system to support with deficit reduction without impacting quality of support to our community?


  • Ensure Health Alliance meeting has workforce focus, invite Sam Carr, Claudia Iton and Rebecca Tuten
  • Familiarise selves with The Wall and where our activity aligns.
  • Ensure we are represented at symposium July 10th (Sharon attending)

Date, time and venue of next meeting and name of the representative who will be attending

23 June, 13.30 via Teams, Sharon attending

The Flexible Frontline Fund – a new programme for Glasspool. Replacing the Essential Living Fund

The Flexible Frontline Fund – a new programme for Glasspool

From the end of January 2024, Glasspool’s flagship grants programme, the Essential Living Fund, will cease and The Flexible Frontline Fund will replace it as their primary grants programme.

The overarching purpose of the new programme is to increase financial wellbeing and reduce financial distress for individuals living in financial hardship. Individuals will receive quality whole-person support from frontline organisations and a grant for items or services.

To download the information pack, click here

For more information and an opportunity to ask questions, you can book to attend a webinar held via Teams at 2pm on Wednesday 7th June 2023 – register here

Full details can be found here.


Hunt’s Forum Volunteer Award – Nominations open

Hunts Forum is inviting nominations for its annual Volunteer Awards, which will be held for another year at Hinchingbrook Park. Volunteering has been and continues to be the lifeblood of our communities. In the past few years, many organisations have relied even more on those individuals who support and make things happen!

This year there will be four categories, three are for members of Hunts Forum. However, the Rural Award is open to all community groups within Cambridgeshire.

The Rural Award

The Rural Volunteer Award celebrates volunteers’ contributions to our county’s rural areas. This area falls outside one of the major towns and is open to all community organisations across Cambridgeshire, regardless of membership status.

To nominate a volunteer for this award, please fill in a nomination form which can be found HERE

Other awards

Volunteer Award

The Volunteer Award, is Hunts Forum’s chance to celebrate any volunteering, so nominations are open to any volunteer within the membership. You tell us how outstanding those chosen individuals are.

NEW!  Trustee of the Year Award

An award to thank a member of your board who has gone beyond their legal duties and supported the organisation in ways that have impacted the community.

NEW!  Young Volunteer of the Year Award

This award recognises young volunteers’ fantastic work for their community. This award is for anyone aged up to 25 who has contributed to their local organisation in such a way that there has been a considerable impact.


All nominations must be made through the correct form, which can be found on the Hunts Forum website (HERE) and sent to info@huntsforum.org.uk by the 2nd of June 2023. For all enquiries relating to the awards, please email info@huntsforum.org.uk 
 All final winners will be announced at the award ceremony on the 4th of July, and those shortlisted will be invited to attend the event. Everyone nominated will receive a certificate.

Help us improve our website