Third Sector Trends in the North West of England research report

Tony Chapman, honorary professor at the University of Durham, has produced a report in partnership with IPPR North regarding third sector trends across the North and the North West of England.

The statistics produced from the report showed that across the North West, 133,000 people are in full-time employment combined with 430,000 volunteers contributing 30 million hours (per annum), worth between £475m and £816m. The total GVA from these figures equates to £2.5bn.

Across the north as a whole, statistics showed that 233,000 people are in full-time employment combined with 930,000 volunteers contributing 66 million hours (per annum) with a total GVA of £5.4bn.

Number of full-time employees and volunteers working in the voluntary sector



Source: Third Sector Trends in the North of England (IPPR North, 2017)

Not only does the data highlight the number of people involved within the sector; it also indicates the contribution from the North West to the region as a whole. These figures highlight the value and importance of the voluntary sector across the North not only at a fiscal level, but also in showing the amount of hours that volunteers invest over the year.

As the report concludes, one of the main strengths of the sector is its sheer size as a whole; as well as the strength of the positive relationships between organisations (both formal and informal), between TSOs and with the public and private sector; and the crucial role of volunteers in sustaining third sector activity.

It is because of these strengths that the sector continues to show great resilience and the capacity to adapt in the face of a stagnating economy, increasing demand, and the continuation of the government’s austerity agenda.

The full report is available here

VSNW and infrastructure partners in the North West have supported the research conducted by and thank groups who contributed towards the project.

New VSNW publication: Devolution and Beyond

A new publication by VSNW, Devolution and Beyond, compiles essays from leading thinkers and operators in devolution, exploring how the voluntary, community and social enterprise sector can be involved, in the context of the upcoming mayoral elections in May 2017, the UK’s departure from the EU, and the emerging inclusive growth agenda.

With thanks to our contributors:

  • Mike Wild (Macc)
  • Ceri Hughes and Ruth Lupton (Inclusive Growth Analysis Unit)
  • Gill Bainbridge (Merseyside Youth Association)
  • Fay Selvan (Big Life Group)
  • Atif Shafique (Royal Society of the Arts)
  • Neil McInroy (Centre for Local Economic Strategies)
  • Sean Anstee (Greater Manchester Combined Authority)
  • Simone Spray (42nd Street)
  • Garth Hodgkinson (Community CVS)
  • Carolyn Otley (Cumbria Third Sector Network)
  • Kathy Evans (Children England)
  • Jim McMahon MP (Shadow Minister for Local Government and Devolution)

You can download Devolution and Beyond from our publications page

VSNW and Health Education England (HEE) announce joint learning initiative ‘Learning Matters’

The search is on for people and projects where individual and organisational learning is driving development and transforming the health and care sector in the North West.

Voluntary Sector North West (VSNW) and Health Education England (HEE) are proud to announce a new joint regional award programme and learning campaign, Learning Matters, to celebrate all kinds of learning across the health and care sector. You can nominate people: colleagues, volunteers or patients where their learning is really making a difference; or projects which are applying learning in any given context. Nominations will showcase the impact of learning on people and organisations in order to inspire others. They will importantly, acknowledge and say thank you to those who go that extra mile. Show your support by taking the time to nominate. Help us tell people why Learning Matters so much to everyone.

This joint campaign led by VSNW, recognises the contribution that adult learning makes to individual, community and economic wellbeing. It will emphasise the importance the awards’ partnership places on the need to develop and harness all talent. It will highlight what can be done to enable the health and care system to support people to have the knowledge, skills and confidence to play an active role in managing their own health; and how to work effectively with communities and their assets. Learning Matters will also demonstrate the fundamental role of learning in reducing health inequalities and how the sector can use leverage to add social value.

Warren Escadale, CEO VSNW said, ’Together with HEE we will be jointly celebrating and promoting Learning Matters because we believe learning is good for people, the sector and the region. But we need your help to identify staff and volunteers, working in and across the whole of the health and care sector, who have been transformed by learning and who can inspire others to give learning a go. We’d also like to hear about projects and activity where learning is shared and it is changing the way we think and what we do in the sector.’

The Learning Matters awards launch on Friday 03 February 2017. They will recognise people and projects in public, voluntary or private sector organisations; in all kinds of job roles not just those with direct care responsibility. This includes those working in an unpaid and volunteer capacity. These awards will reflect the diversity of learning and the range of responsibilities across the whole of the health and care sector. The award categories themselves will include a celebration of the role and value of apprenticeships for all ages. They will highlight important first steps into the sector. They will spotlight regional talent and shout about career development and progression. And they will provide an insight into how people in the sector support each other.

The Learning Matters team is also pleased to announce a number of sponsored awards which will celebrate innovation and regional ingenuity. These awards will have an eye on underlining the importance of supporting new care models, driving adoption of innovation, innovative community asset based development, patient, carer and public engagement, widening participation in healthcare education, prevention, digital health, personalised care and social prescribing. Your nominations will tell us how.

Nominations are open from 03 February until 12 noon on Monday 10 April 2017

For full details on all these awards and how to get nominating simply follow the link below.