Transforming Local Infrastructure Bid Success


Voluntary sector infrastructure organisations across Devon are celebrating the award of £400,000 from the BIG Lottery Fund to help improve the services they provide to other charities and community organisations across the county.


The funding will last for just over one year, and will enable the 12 organisations within the "Devon Excellence" partnership to create a "single delivery service" that will join-up their operations to give local groups a "one-stop" county-wide advice, information and support service, whatever their need.

Simon Bowkett, the Business Development Manager with Exeter CVS, which led the partnership bid, said:

"We are delighted that, in what was a very fiercely contested national process, the evaluators saw the strength of Devon's partnership and of our proposals, and have awarded us the maximum grant available. This is a significant investment in Devon's voluntary infrastructure services and shows the strength and importance of the sector locally. This money will ensure that the services that the Devon Excellence partnership offers local voluntary and community groups are more accessible, better coordinated and more consistent. It will also offer those local statutory services that help fund our work even better value for their investment than ever."

"Wherever in Devon a community group is, whatever stage of development they are at – whether starting out, growing, or a well-established charity - Devon Excellence will offer a single point of support with access to training, information, development support, consultancy, and specialist advice. The partnership will be uniquely placed to help the voluntary sector in Devon to grow and develop, and to forge links between Devon's civil society organisations and our partners in the public and commercial sectors."

Bids were invited from across the country, and only one bid was allowed per local authority area, so strong partnership was essential. The "Devon Excellence" partnership saw a coming together of 12 organisations that included the 8 local Councils for Voluntary Service, Voluntary Youth Services Devon, the Devon Community Foundation, the Devon Pre-school Learning Alliance and the Intercom Trust.

The award was made as part of a £30 million national programme called the Transforming Local Infrastructure Fund which was launched by the BIG Lottery Fund and the government's Cabinet Office for Civil Society. The fund is designed to help "infrastructure services" – those that help to support other voluntary organisations – to modernise, make efficiencies, and to innovate - developing new ways of delivering services to community groups.

Action East Devon is a member of NAVCA (National Association for Voluntary and Community Action)

Charity Number 1134611 | Company Number 7035905