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March 12, 2008

£30m of funding for the Third Sector was allocated last week

£30m of funding for the Third Sector was allocated last week by Scottish Government. £27m of this went to traditional voluntary sector infrastructure – like CVSs and Volunteer Centres. LPL believes that the distinct identity of the community sector needs to be recognised


Finance Secretary John Swinney today announced details of how more than £30m of support from the Third Sector Development Programme is to be allocated.

The network of 57 Councils of Voluntary Service (CVS) will receive £11.85m from the Scottish Government over the next three years for Third Sector development. The role of Volunteer Centres in enabling people to find volunteering opportunities has also been recognised with a £11.5m award.
£3.7m has been allocated to the Voluntary Action Fund to encourage volunteering.

A further £4m has been allocated to help the Third Sector become more enterprising and deliver more public services.
Mr Swinney said:

“The third sector has a massive role to play in helping to make Scotland a more successful country. More than one million people contribute to their community through volunteering, often helping to transform the lives of some of the most vulnerable people in society.

“The Scottish Government will be providing local government with record levels of funding and the Third Sector will reap the benefits.

“Local authorities will in future have increased flexibility and will be able to divert any efficiency savings they make into local priorities. This presents a real opportunity to enhance, not diminish, the delivery of Third Sector provision.

“This extra funding for the third sector will enable Councils of Voluntary Service to develop their roles and work with central and local government to grasp the opportunities that lie ahead.”

Dr Alison Elliot, Convener of the Scottish Council for Voluntary Organisations (SCVO), said:

“SCVO welcomes this investment in local infrastructure which helps the voluntary sector make such a difference to the people of Scotland. This is a really welcome vote of confidence in the work of the voluntary sector. We hope that this will facilitate further serious voluntary sector engagement in Community Planning.”

George Thomson, CEO of Volunteer Development Scotland, said:

“Together with the network of Volunteer Centres in each local authority area, we appreciate the Scottish Government’s recognition and investment in our services.
“Collectively we welcome and embrace the move towards shared outcomes and aim to contribute to these by meeting the diverse needs of people in a modern Scotland who want to volunteer and make a difference for others.

“Through our partnership with the Scottish Government and local government, we will also ensure that Scotland retains its world-class reputation for excellence and innovation in volunteer development.”

1. Mr Swinney announced last November that a 37 per cent increase in Third Sector development funding would help build a stronger and safer, healthier, fairer and greener Scotland. £63 million was allocated in 2008-11 for Third Sector development, as well as a further £30 million for direct investment through the new Scottish Investment Fund. Today’s announcement sets out how part of the extra support is to be allocated.

2. The network of 57 Councils of Voluntary Service will use the funding to work more closely with local authorities and community planning partnerships to provide advice and support to third sector organisations on a local basis. The network has developed a joint business plan under the theme of ‘Thrive and Connect’ to encourage third sector development.

3. To help the third sector become more enterprising and deliver more public services in 2008-11, £750,000 has been allocated for Local Social Economy Partnerships, £294,000 for Social Enterprise Networks (Senscot), £940,000 for the Social Enterprise Academy, £521,000 for social entrepreneur support through First Port, £258,000 for the Council of Ethnic Minority Voluntary Organisations, £100,000 for action research on Older People for Older People led by the University of the Highlands and Islands, £225,000 for the Scottish Social Enterprise Coalition, £351,000 for Evaluation Support Scotland, £240,000 for Development Trusts Association, £30,000 for International Network of Street Papers and £250,000 for social enterprise support in the Highlands and Islands.

4. Further details on these organisations can be obtained from Communications Finance and Sustainable Growth.