Rutland Voluntary Sector Publishes First Strategy and Looks to Create New Body

12 February 2024

Citizens Advice Rutland working with Change Agents UK have published a strategy setting out the key priorities for the voluntary and community sector in Rutland for the next four years.

Voluntary and community groups support social services, health, legal and council services; provide leisure activities; support young people and older people; run support groups for people in need; and much more. The strategy, the first of its kind for Rutland, aims to support the vision for a vibrant and thriving voluntary sector that improves the quality of life for the people of Rutland. 

During 2023 a steering group of representatives from the sector, along with Rutland County Council, carried out research and engaged with 215 people from 165 organisations across the county through a survey and in-depth discussions.

The group used this wealth of information to identify five key recommendations and actions to help ensure Rutland has an effective and sustainable voluntary sector meeting the demand of local people. These relate to the need for support, resources, communication, connection and representation.

The final action for the steering group is to set up an elected representative body for the wide ranging voluntary and community sector who can aid communication with partner organisations and deliver the strategy.

Geoff Thompson, Chair of the strategy steering group, said “Last year, as High Sheriff of Rutland, I met many incredible people from across our vibrant voluntary and community sector and I am extremely grateful to all the groups and individuals who gave their time and comments to help develop this strategy.”

“As state-provided services face increasing complexity, growing demand for services, and reductions in resources, the voluntary and community sector can play an essential role in helping people live well and solve problems together.”

“The sector’s continued success is vital for the quality of life of our residents and this  strategy sets out a pathway to support this. The first step is our call to anyone involved in the voluntary and community sector who would like to be involved in a representative body for Rutland to get in touch.”

The steering group will be promoting the new Rutland Voluntary and Community Strategy and looking for individuals interested in helping to take forward this work over the next few months with the aim of launching the new representative body in the Spring of 2024.

The strategy along with supporting information can be found at https://volunteerplusrutland.org.uk/reports 

Anyone interested in more information about the Voluntary and Community Sector Strategy, getting involved in the representative body, or the support Citizens Advice Rutland provides to organisations can make contact with the Community Development Officer, Citizens Advice Rutland via cdo@citizensadvicerutland.org.uk or 01572 725809.