Funding for Synthetic turf and safe playgrounds

1st February 2013

The Department for Education today announced the voluntary organisations that have been successful in their bid for funding from the Department’s Voluntary and Community Sector (VCS) grant worth around £60 million each year.

Over the next two years, the VCS organisations awarded grants today will play a significant role in reforming and delivering services for children, young people, parents and families.

At the launch of the bidding prospectus for the VCS grant in November 2010, the Government set out criteria to directly fund, at national level, voluntary and community organisations that work with children, young people, parents and families, with a particular emphasis on early intervention and tackling the needs of the most disadvantaged groups.

The VCS grant has been allocated according to services offered under specific grant themes, these are:

  • Families and Relationship support
  • Early Years and Childcare
  • Child Protection and Safeguarding
  • Young People
  • Children in Care
  • Special Educational Needs and Disability

In addition ‘Strategic Partner’ grants have been established to ensure Government gets advice about issues affecting VCS organisations and to help capacity building of the sector through transition, in particular smaller organisations. The themes for strategic partner grants are

  • Family Services
  • Young People
  • SEN and Disability
  • Early Years and Childcare
  • Overarching

Following a competitive process, the successful VCS organisations have been notified of the indicative amount of grant they will receive, which is subject to negotiation, and the service the Government wishes them to deliver.

There will be around £6 million available from the £60 million for successful bidders to receive extra help and support to build extra capacity, so that they are in good shape to remain sustainable long after this two year grant comes to an end.

The Grant aims to help create

  • a vigorous and responsive sector, freed up from dependency on grant-based funding and better equipped to operate within a payments by results environment
  • organisations which are efficient, effective and sustainable - “commissioning ready” - funded through grants and contracts to provide services for LAs (and others)
  • innovative approaches which will lever in private investment.

Through the localism bill, Government is opening up markets to enable the voluntary sector to play a bigger role in delivering key services such as children’s centres and youth services – and we will work with local authorities to ensure that they commission services from the sector.

Children’s Minister Tim Loughton said:

The Government is committed to supporting voluntary and community sector (VCS) organisations to have a much greater involvement in the running of public services.

The VCS is central to our commitment to building a Big Society. This is demonstrated by today’s announcement of around £60m each year for the next two years for VCS organisations. This is a significant investment in a tough financial climate, and is only one aspect of the funding we will route through the voluntary and community sector.

The voluntary sector plays, and will continue to play, a significant role in reforming services for children, young people and families. I hope this grant further inspires a responsive and determined sector to do even more to improve outcomes for children, young people, parents and families.

Key to Themes:

  • Families and Relationships
  • Early Years & Childcare
  • SEN & Disability
  • Children in Care
  • Child Protection & Safeguarding
  • Young People

*Source: Press release Updated 26 October 2012


Invest into artificial synthetic turf for a safer all weather play areas