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The voice of Scotland’s vibrant voluntary sector

Published by Scottish Council for Voluntary Organisations

TFN is published by the Scottish Council for Voluntary Organisations, Mansfield Traquair Centre, 15 Mansfield Place, Edinburgh, EH3 6BB. The Scottish Council for Voluntary Organisations (SCVO) is a Scottish Charitable Incorporated Organisation. Registration number SC003558.

Holyrood committee takes on SCVO Fair Funding recommendations

This news post is 6 months old

The move was welcomed by those in the sector. 

Scotland’s national membership organisation for the voluntary sector has welcomed recommendations from a Holyrood committee. 

The Scottish Parliament’s Social Justice and Social Security Committee has taken forward a number of calls made by the Scottish Council for Voluntary Organisations (SCVO). 

SCVO provided written evidence, before in-person evidence to the committee in September this year, with their definition of Fair Funding having been developed through significant research and engagement with the voluntary sector.

In the committee’s report following the evidence sessions, they outlined their thoughts and recommendations following SCVO pressure. 

They wrote: “The committee was concerned to hear robust evidence from SCVO regarding the financial pressures on the voluntary sector and its funding relationship with the Scottish Government, described by SCVO as the ‘worst year’. The Committee recommends a fair funding framework is developed and agreed as a matter of urgency; and would ask the Scottish Government what steps it is taking to secure this and what the timescale for delivery is likely to be. SCVO has been asking for multi-year funding for a number of years and the Scottish Government has previously committed to this. It is crucial this matter is resolved to ensure the vital work of the third sector is recognised and supported.

“The Committee asks what plans the Scottish Government has to investigate the financial pressures the voluntary sector is under and what other actions it can take to support the sector, given its valuable role in providing support and services to communities.

“The Committee recommends that the Scottish Government investigates what is causing the delay within the Government’s funding system to voluntary organisations with the aim to rectify this as a matter of urgency. For the next financial year, the Committee expects the Scottish Government to issue timely formal confirmations and payments, to ensure crucial funds can be spent and organisations can seek match funding at the earliest opportunity.”

SCVO representatives have welcomed the parliament’s decision to back the sector’s Fair Funding calls, adding that they look forward to action in the upcoming Scottish budget. 

SCVO's policy and public affairs lead on funding and procurement, Sheghley Ogilvie, said: "The need for a clear plan to achieve Fairer Funding by 2026 is becoming increasingly urgent.

“Years of underfunding and poor funding practices, followed by Covid-19, inflation and the resulting cost-of-living and running costs crises, have strained sector finances and increased demand for the support and services of many voluntary organisations.

“We welcome the Committee’s recognition of the vital work of the voluntary sector and the need to develop a Fair Funding framework as a matter of urgency.

“The Scottish Government should ensure their framework aligns with the priorities of the voluntary sector. We look forward to action from the Scottish Government on the Committee's recommendations in the upcoming Scottish Budget, which can and should recognise and support the many contributions of our essential sector."