Public Services News Roundup: July 2017

Many of you will have noticed an ever so slightly longer gap between public services round ups, which has been due to me taking over from Nick Davies as NCVO’s Public Services Manager – if there’s a public services issue you’d like to discuss, please do get in touch. If you’re looking for funding and finance news, keep an eye on Paul’s posts from now on.

NCVO joins strategic health partnership

NCVO is a partner in the new Health and Wellbeing Alliance. The Alliance will be the place where central government, NHS England and Public Health England come together with VCSE organisations to drive transformation of health and care systems. This single, integrated programme builds on the successes of its predecessor, the Voluntary Sector Investment Programme. This is an ideal opportunity for NCVO to ensure that voluntary organisations and volunteering are at the heart of any developments and funding programmes.

VCSE Health Review Chair published year one update

A little over a year ago, following a wide-ranging consultation, a group of health and care sector bodies and VCSE representatives published their final joint report looking into partnerships and investment between the two sectors. The recommendations ranged across longer term, broader actions and more specific, short term ones, for actors across central and local government, NHS bodies and the VCSE sector itself. Alex Fox OBE, chair of the Review and chief executive of Shared Lives Plus published his update on the work of the VCSE Health Review Implementation Oversight Group. You can also read our summary of his update.

Great commissioning and collaboration

This month, we heard that Knowsley Council in Merseyside launched a commitment (PDF, 870KB) on how the council and the ‘social sector’ in Knowsley will work together to secure the best possible outcomes for residents. The commitment states:

“It demonstrates our commitment to work together within co-operative principles to drive forward our shared commitment to Knowsley.”

Other recent highlights of interesting commissioning include a co-production process in west London where professionals and service users worked together to design an urgent care pathway for people with an acute mental health issue and Southwark Council working with the local voluntary sector consortium to design preventative services for older people.

Please send us your stories if you have them – good or bad – or even better, contribute to sector knowledge by writing a case study.


Last chance for Big Potential

Big Potential (Advanced Route) offers grants of up to £150,000 that enable voluntary organisations to build their capacity to bid for and win contracts above £1m.

The final deadline for applications to Big Potential Advanced is midday on Wednesday 9 August 2017. NCVO is one of several approved providers. For more information call Lev Pedro 020 7520 2411 or email us.

Life Chances Fund

The Life Chances Fund is now open for expressions of interest for social impact bonds under six themes:

  • Drug and Alcohol
  • Children’s Services
  • Young People
  • Early Years
  • Older People
  • Healthy Lives (which has an emphasis on social prescribing).

Expressions of Interest must be submitted by noon 15th September 2017 through the fund website.

Our wider work

If you’d like to read more about our wider work on public services issues, head over to our policy pages for all the latest news.


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Michael was our senior policy officer until January 2019, covering issues around charity tax and finance (including social investment) and the impact of the economy on the sector.

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