In 2016 the council developed a sustainable model for delivering daytime support to meet people’s needs now and in the future. This would include: supporting people to live well in their communities; providing some additional tailored support to people who need this; and ensuring that a range of options are available for people with more complex needs to choose from, using their personal budgets or own resources.
There remained a need to continue to support people to live well in their local community, taking part in a range of locally available opportunities. Our aim was to reduce loneliness and social isolation by supporting individuals and communities to support each other.
Oxfordshire’s voluntary sector delivers excellent support to many vulnerable people; and the majority do so without funding from Oxfordshire County Council. As part of the outcomes from the daytime support review, the council introduced Voluntary Sector Funding.
- The Sustainability Fund, £250,000 per year, to provide grants to enable the ongoing delivery of daytime support services in areas of high need. The fund will be open to all voluntary and community groups supporting people in Oxfordshire.
- The Innovation Fund, £100,000 per year, to provide one-off grant funding to establish self-sustaining projects to fill gaps in services and broaden the current offer. The fund will be open to all voluntary and community groups supporting people in Oxfordshire.
Review of the Innovation and Sustainability Funds
Both funds have increased in popularity since 2017/18 and it was deemed an appropriate time to review the application forms, criteria and process to enable us to improve our offer and to meet increased demand.
The review included holding a listening workshop, an on-line survey, meeting with colleagues whom support the grant process from beginning to end and obtaining specific feedback from the first cohort of successful applicants to the Innovation Fund, for an update on their progress to date and future plans, as they near the end of their funding period.
The information gathered from the above activities has enabled us to make recommendations, for final decision by Cabinet on July 16, 2019, which will shape and improve the grant applications, guidelines, and the award selection and decision-making processes.
Innovation and Sustainability Funds re-opening date
Application forms and further information on both funds, to include eligibility criteria, guidance and support will be available on this webpage from Monday 12 August 2019, which is when the Sustainability and Innovation Funds will re-open.
Part of the feedback received from the review of the grant funding was a request for a workshop to be held where applicants can come and discuss their service ideas, grant needs and the application process and three-year business plan. In response to that request, Oxfordshire County Council and Oxfordshire Voluntary and Community Services will be holding a workshop on Tuesday 3 September (a.m.) and Thursday 5 September (p.m.) for people currently offering or looking to offer daytime support services in Oxfordshire. More details will follow shortly.
Key dates (These dates may be subject to change)
- Opening of the Innovation and Sustainability Funds – August 12, 2019
- Workshops – 3 and 5 September
- Closing date for applications to both funds – 20 September 2019
- Cross party-panel meetings – applications assessed and recommendations for award are made – week commencing 7 October 2019
- Final decision for award will be agreed at Cabinet - 12 January 2020.
- Funding will begin on or just after the 1 April 2020 until 31 March 2021
In the meantime, please contact Rebecca Lanchbury, Commissioning Officer, should you have any questions or comments: Rebecca.firstname.lastname@example.org