Working with government
Deep financial cuts combined with radical changes in the nature of government are redefining the relationship between government and the voluntary sector.
Through the Big Society, the Coalition Government wants to:
- give people more power and control over their lives and their communities
- reform public services
- champion social action over state control and top-down Government-set targets
The government hopes to achieve this by shifting power away from the centre, increasing transparency and building capability.
The Prime Minister, David Cameron, has said:
"Looking forward, the role of this sector has never been more important… Communities can only work where the skills, enthusiasm and commitment of the sector is harnessed."
A strong and independent voluntary sector is central to this vision because, as government knows, voluntary organisations can:
- encourage social action and campaign for social change
- play a bigger part in designing and delivering public services
- drive community empowerment
Civil society is made up of many different types of body – from small community groups, to well known charities and international organisations.
The Compact aims to ensure that these groups and government work together effectively.
Chair of Compact Voice, Simon Blake explains:
"The Compact is not just another document to be followed, but a way of working which enables those using it to better carry out their existing roles. And at its best it is a platform which the two sectors can build on to form a powerful relationship."
Alongside the Compact, measures have been introduced to ensure there is greater accountability and transparency around its implementation.
- Find out more about the Compact
- Visit the Compact Voice website
- Download the Compact Accountability Guide (PDF 196 KB)
- Download Getting a fair deal - Overcoming problems working with government guide (PDF 9.7 MB)
APPG on Civil Society and Volunteering
NCVO provides the secretariat to the All Party Parliamentary Group on Civil Society and Volunteering. The group provides a forum for discussing the issues affecting the voluntary sector and currently has around 300 members, from both the House of Commons and the House of Lords, representing the UK's main political parties.
Policy and research
- Charity law and regulation
- European and international
- Giving and philanthropy
- Independence and values
- Other projects
- Public services
- What is the voluntary sector?
- Working with government
- Voluntary sector workforce
- Tell NCVO
- Getting your message across to Government
- Meet the team