Action Hampshire, with the support of the district CVSs, recently carried out some research into the state of the voluntary sector in Hampshire.
An on-line survey was circulated around Hampshire’s voluntary and community sector organisations in November/December 2017. A range of questions were posed, most of which were asked in relation to the organisation’s position 3 years ago.
478 responses were received commenting on areas including capacity to deliver services, financial security, volunteering and planning for the future. Some of the key findings highlighted issues on the increase in demand for services and areas that organisations are struggling with.
Over 60% of respondents reported that demand for their services has increased over the past 3 years, but many also report that the type of demand has changed. As other services close, there is nowhere to refer clients on to:
“Clients are more likely to have multiple issues, and as other support services have decreased we often cannot refer them for other support and therefore work holistically.”
What are organisations struggling with?
Organisations continue to struggle with a range of subjects and issues: volunteers (recruiting, retaining and managing), marketing, and gaining funds (specifically earning fees, bid writing, and tendering & procurement).
“It has become much harder to generate revenue. Even our fund raising events are getting fewer people.”
Very few respondents said that they were likely to be helping their beneficiaries less in a year’s time. A worrying 22% of respondents felt that they either had ‘no idea’ where they would be in a year’s time, or were unsure if they would still exist in a year’s time.
What does this mean for the future of Hampshire’s voluntary sector organisations?
You can download the summary and full report here: