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Working with voluntary and charity groups

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In Cumbria, community and voluntary organisations and charities play a big part in making our county a good place to live.

These organisations, often called the Third Sector, also includes community organisations, social enterprises, co-operatives and mutual societies. 

They cover a huge range of issues and services including social care, health, the arts, training and skills, the environment, rural life, sports, the economy and many more. Faith organisations and housing associations that are involved in community work are also considered to be part of the sector.

These organisations are invaluable to Cumbria County Council and our residents because they are hugely important in innovation, designing, developing and delivering services, advocacy and campaigning for change on many issues. 

Cumbria County Council works with and supports these organisations in five main ways:

  • We work directly with some organisations, commissioning them to deliver specialist services to our residents
  • Our procurement practices include social clauses – contracts which make sure something is put back into the community as a result of work we commission
  • We have signed up to the Cumbria Compact which details how the council will work with voluntary and charity organisations to improve relationships and work better together
  • We offer Community Grants which support small scale community organisations and activities and are part of our pledge to buying from, investing in and giving to third sector organsations
  • We promote and encourage volunteering amongst residents and staff