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WCVA calls for action to address third sector underfunding

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WCVA calls for action to address third sector underfunding

The WCVA is calling for urgent action to address underfunding of the third sector in Wales at the launch of a new publicly accessible data hub at today’s gofod3 event.

The hub compiles figures from sources including Welsh Government, NCVO, Wales Council for Voluntary Action and others to shine a light on the third sector in Wales. At gofod3, WCVA is calling on the third sector and its key partners across Wales to work together to address the shortage of funds, highlighting figures compiled in the new hub that reveal that Wales accounts for just £1 billion of the total value of the third sector across the UK, worth over £45 billion in total excluding housing associations. The data also shows that while income across the whole of the UK is £700 per head, it is £350 per head in Wales, and that Welsh Government to the sector has been cut by 30% over a five-year period, from £350 million to £248 million.

Ruth Marks, Chief Executive of WCVA said:

“This data hub provides a snapshot of the third sector as it is today. It allows us an opportunity to determine the health of the sector – now and in the future. To my mind, it clearly demonstrates the enormous contribution the third sector is currently making to Wales. It is the backbone keeping upright many of our communities.

“Minor miracles are performed daily by small, local charities, tiny social enterprises and thousands of volunteers in Wales. Their contribution is extraordinary and all the more impressive considering their woeful budgets.

“There is no denying with this data that the third sector in Wales is operating with one hand tied behind its back. The data hub also helps shine a light on the real challenges we face, including Government cuts, a post-Brexit world without EU funding, and a failure by Welsh third sector organisations to capitalise on UK-wide funding.”

Now in its second year, gofod3 is WCVA’s flagship event and organisers expect over 600 professionals and volunteers to attend and take part in over 70 events and 60 exhibitions, on issues such as Brexit, new data protection laws, and public confidence in charities.

Gofod3 also falls on International Women’s Day this year, and a range of events are taking place throughout the day to celebrate the occasion, with special appearances from Betsan Powys, Editor Radio Cymru & Cymru Fyw, and Sophie Howe, Future Generations Commissioner for Wales. Events include a Chwarae Teg session on encouraging more young women to become trustees; an overview of the UK Parliament’s Vote 100 Campaign; Welsh Women’s Aid’s #TimesUp debate in relation to domestic violence in Wales and a debate on the challenges ahead in the company of Women’s Equality Network (WEN) Wales, Women Connect First, NUS Wales and Welsh Women’s Aid.

Melanie May is a journalist and copywriter specialising in writing both for and about the charity and marketing services sectors since 2001. She can be reached via www.thepurplepim.com.

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