The role of Chair or Vice Chair can often seem challenging, leadership can be feel isolating. Do you sometimes think it would be good to talk to other chairs that also face similar demands? Would you like the chance to discuss issues and opportunities, share good practice and participate in peer to peer learning with other North Tyneside organisational Chairs and Vice Chairs?
Collaborate in seeking solutions to hot topics such as:
Effective trustees and governance
Louise Sneiders, Chair at YMCA North Tyneside says: “As a new Chair I’m getting to grips with my role and would love to connect with and learn from others in a similar position. It can feel like an overwhelming responsibility at times, so meeting others, even for a chat over a cuppa would help.”
As part of our Trustee support network VODA is offering to facilitate a free Chairs’ network providing the venue and resources to get things started.
For further information or to register your interest contact Keith Hardy, Core Services Manager at email@example.com or call 0191 643 2636.
‘Working With the VCS’ is a free quarterly event organised in partnership by North Tyneside Council and VODA and open to any organisation delivering services in North Tyneside.
The next event on 10 December at the Evo Centre in the Royal Quays, will explore the role of the voluntary and community sector in supporting the health and wellbeing of North Tyneside residents. This interactive event will bring together local health professionals, charities, community organisations, commissioners and others to:
Explore and influence current health initiatives in North Tyneside such as Social Prescribing and Primary Care Networks
Showcase existing voluntary and community sector provision focussing on tackling loneliness, encouraging healthy behaviours and partnership working
Develop new relationships to identify ways of working together more effectively
The latest issue of the Sector Connector bulletin, aimed at Sector Connector business partners, was a special edition printed magazine, which was facilitated by our Sector Connector partnership with yourPrintDepartment.
North Tyneside Council, VODA and the North Tyneside Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) have been working together to refresh the North Tyneside Better Together Strategy.
The strategy was first developed in 2015, setting out how North Tyneside Council and the voluntary and community sector would work together to build strong and sustainable partnerships. Since then, a number of positive outcomes have been achieved to increase capacity within the VCS, improve engagement between the two sectors and involve VCS organisations in decision making.
The Better Together strategy has now been widened to include North Tyneside CCG and VODA with an ambition to achieve the following outcomes over the next three years:
increasing the capacity of VCS organisations to adapt and thrive in times of diminishing resources and increasing demand
supporting residents to play a more active role in managing their own health and wellbeing, as well as the health and wellbeing of their local communities
ensuring every resident has the opportunity to contribute to their community through volunteering and social action
supporting systems that facilitate positive engagement and collaborative working between all partners
supporting the VCS to have a strong and meaningful role in influencing policy by speaking up on behalf of the people they represent.
We’re delighted to reveal our new look Sector Connector logo and strapline, which has been kindly developed for us via a Sector Connector partnership with yourPrintDepartment in North Shields.
The new logo has been developed in response to the changing nature of Sector Connector and more accurately reflects the professional standard of the project and what it does. Thank you to the team at yourPrintDepartment for your support!
We were delighted that the BBC Radio Newcastle Breakfast Show was able to join our Good Neighours shopping trip last week. They spent the morning chatting to our shoppers and volunteers to find out more about how this wonderful project helps to support people stay in their own home and keep their independence. You can listen to the feature from last week’s show below. If you would like to get involved, please contact us for more information.
We’re delighted that our Good Neighbours shopping trip has been featured on a new blog from the Department of Culture, Media and Sport. Let’s Talk Loneliness is the start of a year long campaign to tackle the stigma around loneliness. This campaign will show that feeling lonely is simply part of being human, much like being hungry, and encourage people to act through easy-to-understand messages and information.
The blog features a case study about Min, one of our lovely regular Good Neighbours shoppers. Min, who is 89 this year and lives in sheltered accommodation in North Shields, has been coming to the shopping trip for several months now, ever since the warden at her accomodation noticed how much trouble she was having with her shopping.
“I think it’s amazing that the volunteers give up their time to help people like me. David, who I was first matched with, was such a great support, he not only helped with my shopping but he’d make sure everything was put away for me at home and even did some odd jobs in the house that I couldn’t manage.”
The Let’s Talk Loneliness campaign features a range of resources, toolkits, suggested media posts and ways to get involved.
We had the pleasure of hosting Prince’s Trust participant Nathaniel for two days work placement this week. Nathaniel blogs about his time with us in his own words…
VODA are a charity that provides support, advice, training and information to volunteers and volunteering groups and charities across North Tyneside. They are based in Queen Alexandra College in North Shields, where they work to support and develop the voluntary and community sector by providing a wide range of support and services. They also represent the views of the sector to government and policy makers on a local and national level.
Here’s what I got up to for the two days:
On my first day with VODA, I joined in with the Good Neighbour’s project that VODA run at Tesco on Norham Road. This is set up so that the older generation that may not get out or just need a little bit of help with their shopping, can be able to have some help where they need it or just to be able to have a chat with people. I was then introduced to the team at VODA and was taken for a tour of the building and then told about what activities that VODA do and the support that they could offer people. I was then set a task of where I had to type up about a project that I had been doing with VODA which will be published on the website. After lunch I was taken to the Linskill Centre in North Shields in which I took part in an art session with some members of the community.
On my second/last day I finished my blog for the VODA website and posted it live with the support of the team. Then in the afternoon I participated in a project called “Backpack Buddies” which aims to try and help those who are experiencing food insecurity. I helped by packing food bags up in which will be sent out to those who will need it over the weekend so that they will be able to eat without having to worry how much it will cost.
What have you learnt?
There is this stereotype that older people do not like the younger generation because we can be classed as “disruptive”. But I have learnt that actually although some people do think that, lots of people actually enjoy talking to younger people. I have also found out that younger people actually enjoy talking to older people and that they find talking to other people quite interesting.
What skills did you develop?
I developed my interaction skills massively while on this work experience as I was able to interact with people that I wouldn’t normally interact with and I was able to help/make a difference to those that genuinely need it.
What did you enjoy?
I enjoyed getting an insight into what it would be like to work and volunteer with VODA. I enjoyed everything that I have done on this work experience placement and I would like to thank VODA for giving me the chance to work with them!
On Tuesday 19 March NAVCA held their first ever national awards event in London, showcasing the brilliant achievements of their member organisations. We are delighted that North Tyneside VODA’s Sector Connector project came home with the ‘Collaboration and Partnership Working Award’.
The NAVCA Awards have been designed to celebrate local third sector infrastructure – the unsung heroes of our sector – and a total of nine awards were handed out during the evening, including two for the Newcastle CVS. See all the award winners here.
Robin Fry, VODA’s Chief Executive, said “We nominated our Sector Connector project in the category of Collaboration and Partnership Working as we believe it is a shining example of how the private and third sectors can work together for mutual benefit. Since the project began, over 100 businesses have engaged in Sector Connector, having a hugely positive impact on North Tyneside’s voluntary and community sector. Collaboration is one of our five core values at VODA, and facilitating cross-sector partnerships is a key strategic objective. I am immensely proud of the work that our Sector Connector project has achieved to date, and look forward to seeing what the future holds.”
Sector Connector recognises that, at a time when voluntary and community organisations are being encouraged to be more entrepreneurial, the private sector has skills and experience that are useful to charities, whilst those same charities and community organisations can help businesses to better understand the communities they serve.
The project enables any business, irrespective of size, to engage with its local community, whether it’s through the giving of time by providing one-to-one mentoring and advice; taking part in team volunteering days; sharing skills and expertise by delivering workshops for groups of community organisations; or by becoming trustees.
Businesses involved with Sector Connector offer a wide range of support including:
Making free spaces available for voluntary organisations on a two-day Mental Health First Aid training course.
Provision of free support to design branding and marketing for a community orchard.
Delivery of a workshop on ‘getting the most out of your team’ from a private sector personal coach (feedback from which indicates VCS managers who attended have completely transformed the way that they are working).
A collaboration project between the business sector and the voluntary sector to explore the regeneration of North Shields town centre.
VODA is always looking for new businesses to get involved in the Sector Connector project, if you would like to get involved, please contact Ian Dodds.
VODA and the services we offer are available across North Tyneside and although we are based in North Shields we are keen to make sure that volunteers, groups and organisations across the borough know who we are and what we do.
For that reason, we are taking our services on the road throughout 2019! Members of VODA’s team will be available at community venues on the following dates and times to speak to anyone interested in volunteering in North Tyneside, or in finding out more about VODA and the services we offer to the voluntary and community sector:
We have recently launched a new visual representation of our vision and plans – see picture above – and offering an outreach service is just one way of making sure these plans happen effectively. There is no need to book a place at any of these sessions – just pop along to talk to one of our friendly team to find out how VODA can help.
We’re here to provide support, advice and training to volunteers and voluntary and community groups in North Tyneside. Please explore our website to find out more about the services we provide, or contact us for further information.