Voluntary and Community Sector support services

Closed 10 Feb 2017

Opened 18 Nov 2016

Feedback Updated 11 Dec 2017

We Asked

We ran this consultation for 13 weeks (from 18 Nov 2016 to 10 Feb 2017) to solicit a range of views about services commissioned by the council over the past three years to help groups and organisations in Leicester’s voluntary and community sector (VCS).

Specifically, we wanted to find out:

  • how many VCS groups and organisations have accessed these services
  • how often VCS groups and organisations have accessed these services
  • how useful VCS groups and organisations have found these services
  • what outcomes, if any, have been achieved as a result of the support

what future support respondents believe the council can give the city’s VCS.

Our intention was to develop a better understanding of the support services considered most valuable within the sector and which the council should consider retaining in some meaningful form within any future arrangements.

You Said

The total number of respondents to the online survey was 134. Of this number, respondents identified themselves as belonging to the following categories:

  • 51 (38%) on behalf of a local VCS group or organisation
  • 29 (22%) as someone who uses services provided by a VCS group or organisation
  • 54 (40%) as a member of public with an interest in how the city council supports the VCS in Leicester.

We know that there are a large number of VCS groups and organisations in the city, that between them they employ a large number of people, and that they provide services to a high number of users.

It is therefore noteworthy that even though the consultation has been actively promoted in a number of ways the actual response levels were disappointingly low.

We Did

Results of the consultation were factored into the procurement of a new, streamlined service providing infrastructure support that was the subject of a procurement exercise in August and September 2017, leading to the award of a two-year contract (with possibility of a 12-month extension) to Voluntary Action LeicesterShire.


The city council commissions services to support Voluntary and Community Sector (VCS) groups and organisations in Leicester. Contracts are currently in place for the following services:

  • Supporting collaboration and guaranteeing a collective voice for the city’s Voluntary and Community Sector;
  • Providing infrastructure support to the city’s Voluntary and Community Sector;
  • Supporting volunteers and volunteering in the city.

This non-statutory discretionary provision costs £276,000 per year. Most of this expenditure is met by the city council, with contributions from the Office of the Police and Crime Commissioner and Leicester City Clinical Commissioning Group.

The city council recognises and values how VCS groups and organisations help deliver positive outcomes for individuals, families, communities and neighbourhoods. We are committed to doing all we can to sustain an effective Voluntary and Community Sector for Leicester in the face of changing circumstances. We need to consider the place of such services in our programme for the forseeable future. That's why we are seeking your views on support for Leicester's Voluntary and Community Sector.

Why We Are Consulting

As the city council is in receipt of diminishing financial support from national government, we need to consider how we support the local Voluntary and Community Sector. Conversations are taking place with various partners about the contributions they might make towards these support services.

We want to hear about your experience of these support services: how they are being delivered now and what you think we might do in future.

You can take part in this survey in one of three ways:

  • on behalf of a local VCS group or organisation;
  • as someone who uses services provided by a VCS group or organisation;
  • as a member of the public with an interest in how the city council supports the Voluntary and Community Sector in Leicester.


  • All Areas


  • All residents
  • Local charitable organisations, including faith communities
  • Voluntary organisations
  • Community organisations
  • Self-help groups
  • User groups
  • Service users


  • Adult social care and safeguarding
  • Children's social care and safeguarding
  • Neighbourhood services
  • Public participation
  • Volunteering and the third sector
  • City development and neighbourhoods
  • Community centres