The purpose of Oxfordshire Stronger Communities Alliance (OSCA) is to to help build and maintain stronger communities and a thriving voluntary, community and faith sector in Oxfordshire to improve the quality of life for local people. The main objectives are to build a:
- Sustainable voluntary, community and faith sector
- Stronger and empowered community
The OSCA brings together members from voluntary sector support providers, faith groups, representatives of local councils, the NHS, military and police. This partnership is focused on delivering a co-ordinated approach where agencies can collaborate, use resources effectively and utilise the areas of expertise of all the partner agencies involved.
It is chaired by the Rt Revd Colin Fletcher OBE Bishop of Dorchester and Councillor Mark Gray (cabinet member for local communities).
The principles adopted by OSCA are:
- Open a two-way dialogue to identify and problem solve issues affecting the delivery of public and voluntary sector services and opportunities for social action.
- Constructive dialogue and challenge in assessing the potential for improved ways of working.
- The sharing of information and knowledge to identify and promote appropriate collaborative working.
- Trust in organisations to tackle issues or define appropriate solutions either alone or in partnership.
OSCA consists of the following members:
- Oxfordshire County Council Cabinet Member for the Voluntary Community Sector – co Chair
- Bishop of Dorchester- co Chair
- Oxfordshire Community and Voluntary Action
- Community First Oxfordshire
- Oxfordshire County Council representatives including Public Health
- Oxfordshire Clinical Commissioning Group
- Oxford City Council
- South Oxfordshire District Council
- Vale of White Horse District Council
- West Oxfordshire District Council
- Cherwell District Council
- Oxford Hub
- Oxfordshire Association of Local Councils
- Oxford Council of Faiths
- Oxfordshire Community Foundation
- Cooperative Futures
- Oxfordshire Playing Fields Association
- Oxfordshire Play Association
- Oxfordshire Youth
- Volunteer Link Up
- Churches Together in Oxfordshire
- Volunteer Connect
Roles and responsibilities
The Chairman of OSCA and the County Council Cabinet Member for local communities will co-chair the group.
Day to day business
OSCA Partnership meetings are held three times a year.
The overriding responsibility of OSCA is to the whole community of Oxfordshire, but it has a special responsibility for representing the views of their members, networks and communities in:
- Providing a forum for debating and identifying issues and priorities that would benefit from the partnership approach
- Appointing working groups to undertake specific tasks identified through the Partnership meetings
- Being the accountable body for the Oxfordshire Compact
- Supporting members and local organisations to achieve Compact compliance
- Acting as a sounding board for issues raised through the annual district VCFS forums and the County Conference
- Providing a point of contact for consultation on VCS issues and policy
- Endorsing funding bids on behalf of the Alliance
- Considering plans and strategies which help build and maintain stronger communities and a thriving voluntary, community and faith sector in Oxfordshire
- Electing the OSCA Chairman
The Oxfordshire Compact is a set of guidelines and principles which support good practice; better and effective working relationships between public authorities and the voluntary, community and faith sectors.