Laura Sharman 22 April 2021

Pandemic made councils 'more responsive' to charities, survey finds

Pandemic made councils more responsive to charities, survey finds image

The pandemic has helped improve the relationships and collaboration between local authorities and charities, according to new research.

Over half of charities surveyed as part of the Respond, Recover and Reset: The Voluntary Sector and Covid-19 project said local authorities have become ‘more responsive’ to their needs during coronavirus.

A quarter said their relationship with local authorities had improved during the pandemic, with 36% saying they had increased their engagement with local authorities in the past year.

However the research also found smaller organisations were more likely to report a deterioration in their relationship with the local government sector.

The project is led by the National Council for Voluntary Organisations (NCVO), Nottingham Trent University and Sheffield Hallam University.

Alex Farrow, head of networks and influencing at NCVO, said: ‘While over half of the organisations we surveyed saw an improvement in their relationship with local government, with the pandemic making local authorities more responsive, it’s clear that this is not universal and that lots of smaller charities have not seen an improvement.

’We’re concerned about the level of funding local authorities will have to sustain engagement and rebuild communities in the months and years ahead. We continue to call for central government to strengthen the long-term financial sustainability of local authorities by increasing core funding. This would have a huge impact on charities around the UK.’

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