Voluntary Action LeicesterShire (VAL) has been brought on to the project to work alongside and in partnership with LCC to further support the project’s aims and objectives for the City. The key objective from LCC has always been to further strengthen their intensive work and desires in tackling the impact of the Cost of Living Crisis on Leicester, which has particularly affected some of our most vulnerable local residents.
Through the commitment of the Anti-Poverty Strategy and the tremendous hard work of organisations across Leicester City, there has been a great level of success with many organisations delivering an impact extending above and beyond to our community. In line with the key objectives of the Strategy, VAL’S partnership aim has been to further understand the VCSE sector’s needs in the City, to provide key support to empower the VCSE sector to find solutions for these challenges now and moving forwards.
The partnership work commenced in August with LCC, at the launch of the Anti-Poverty Recap conference which took place at The City Hall VAL looked to support with addressing support when applying for this much needed funding. Our aim was, and continues to be, evaluating the Anti-Poverty Framework/project, in order to identify the needs of our local communities and to make recommendations for future collaborative work across Leicester.
Through conversations it has become clear that networking with our colleagues will be key to facilitate partnership work, but also to open up the conversation into how together we can make local projects and services sustainable. Collaboration will be key to ensure we can all meet the needs of our local communities.
Our first Anti-Poverty Networking Conference was held at Winstanley House in Braunstone Park in October 2023. With approximately 90 delegates attending, alongside speakers and workshop leads, discussions were vibrant and engaging, with very positive conversations taking place around a difficult and challenging topic for all of Leicester. The focus of the day was around inspiring, informing, connecting and collaborating, and above all hope that as a City we will and are continuing to work through these challenges.
We were pleased to have such a great attendance with highly skilled passionate individuals wanting to be a part of the conversation and be the difference. The conference was opened by our keynote speaker, supported us with his valuable knowledge, Steve Meadwell from The Centre of Social Justice
With the kindness of fellow key presenters and supporters in the fight against poverty, we were able to provide 3 workshops and gain valuable knowledge resources and awareness, into how we navigate through the daily challenges ‘we’ as a sector face. So thankyou to Steve Meadwell as well as our exceptional Key supporters on the day.
- Ending Hunger in Leicester & Leicestershire – Rory Palmer, The Trussell Trust
- Diversifying Income – Faye Hennessy and Ben Jowitt, Charities Aid Foundation (CAF)
- Organisational Collaboration in the Voluntary Sector: the potential good (and not so good!)- Dr Daniel Haslam, Open University
- Collaboration Model and Working in Leicester: Martha Skinner, FoodCycle
- Data research: Vipul Bechar, Leicester City Council and Sue McEniff, Charity Link
- Councillor Sarah Russell, Leicester City Council.
In attendance the following organisations and audience members provided a wealth of information, resources and knowledge – delivering an opportunity to front line workers to receive face to face support. So we are so thankful to all stall holders for their passion and commitment on the day.
- Charity Link
- Citizens Advice Bureau
- Community Well being Champions
- Jamila’s Legacy
- LCC Services/ choice app grants
- National Energy Action
- Voluntary Action LeicesterShire (VAL)
- Healthwatch Leicester and Healthwatch Leicestershire
[Image Credits: Saul Morgan Photography]
Feedback from delegates on the day was really positive, with string comments on networking time, being able to discuss collaboration, exploring new areas of funding and income streams, as well how we could work together to better use our data.
“Thanks to you and your colleagues for giving us the opportunity to showcase our work and for organising a really informative and valuable event. I look forward to seeing you again in the near future.”
“Excellent talk that was very thought provoking. A lot of interesting relevant and complex issues broken down in a very informative useful way”
Moving forwards – We will be continuing the Anti-poverty conversation/ challenges, providing information and tools to further support the sector where we can, and how we remain sustainable in current economic climate.
This will be through our next networking Event, which will be taking place on the 17th of January 2024, so please click this link for more details and to book your place! Book your place here
As well as workshops, speakers, and provided resources, the event will be also be celebrating the ongoing impact organisations and charities, small and large – have had through their tireless work to support individuals/ families and the wider community. There are high demands and challenges, but despite this, there is also a great amount of difference that the sector, projects, and people have provided to so many families and needed individuals, we must not forget that success to carry hope moving forwards.
Find out more
For more information about any other aspect or to learn more about this project please click here: https://www.leicester.gov.uk/anti-poverty/introduction/
If you’re a voluntary, community or social enterprise organisation who wants more support or more information you can get in touch with us via:
0116 257 5050