Leaders of Manchester-based charities have shared their experiences of the Covid-19 crisis and their thoughts for the future in a new report produced by Macc, Manchester’s local voluntary and community sector support organisation.
Titled No Going Back, the report brings together the experiences of 22 local voluntary sector leaders who shine a light on the critical role that the voluntary, community and social enterprise (VCSE) sector has played during the response to the Covid-19 crisis. As well as reflecting on the lessons learned during the crisis, the leaders make the case for change going forward and highlight the unique opportunity society has to make things better in the future.
Commenting on the launch of the report, Mike Wild, chief executive of Macc said “Manchester’s 3,000+ voluntary, community and social enterprise organisations have responded amazingly to the crisis. They have remade services so people can stay connected and supported during lockdown, worked to ensure nobody is left without access to food, shelter, care, wellbeing support, mental health support, creative activities and provided support around pre-existing matters which had nothing directly to do with Covid-19.
“The sector’s resilience has been tested in ways few of us have ever experienced. That this has taken place at the same time as a sudden drop in fundraising and other activities which generate income for VCSE organisations, speaks to their dedication to make a difference when they are most needed. It is estimated there has been a loss of over £10bn in the sector across the country, yet this has not deterred Manchester VCSE organisations from responding.
“There is a crucially important lesson to be drawn from the voluntary sector’s response to the Covid-19 crisis. That is that these organisations are part of the resilience of our communities and we need them to be there - and never more so than in a crisis. No Going Back tells their story. Manchester’s marvellously diverse vibrant, messy, gumption-filled, voluntary, community and social enterprise sector has risen to the challenge of the moment and we must build on this, invest in it or risk losing it altogether.”
No Going Back highlights the determination, passion and wealth of policy ideas from the voluntary sector and Macc hopes that it will influence key decision-makers and commissioners as they respond and shape policies in the post-Covid landscape.
Brief details of the 22 voluntary sector leaders’ contributions to the report are listed below. Macc is grateful to them all for sharing their stories with us. We hope that these stories will be shared more widely to highlight the critical role that the voluntary, community and social enterprise sector has played during the response to the Covid-19 crisis.
WHEN THE FEES DRY UP
Rethinking the role and funding of threatened community spaces.
Adrian Ball, Chief Executive, Manchester Settlement
TOGETHER APART – FALLING APART TOGETHER?
Working safely online with victims and perpetrators of domestic abuse.
Anna Callaghan, Director of Services, TLC
AN ECONOMY THAT WORKS FOR EVERYONE
Designing, with citizens and communities, an inclusive economy focussed on social and environmental benefit.
Chris Dabbs, Chief Executive, Unlimited Potential
DUMPLINGS OF LOVE: CONNECTED, NOT ABANDONED
The importance of providing love, care and human connection for Chinese communities facing racism.
Circle Steele, CEO, Wai Yin
LOCKED DOWN, LOCKED UP AND LOCKED OUT
Prisoners in lockdown: supporting the people who love them.
Diane Curry, CEO, POPS
THE HARMED MUST NOT BE HIDDEN
Ensuring that male survivors of sexual abuse and domestic violence are seen and not missed.
Duncan Craig OBE, CEO, Survivors Manchester
BRITAIN’S BEST KEPT SECRET
The importance of community radio during a pandemic
Ed Connole, Director, ALL FM
POWER OF BELONGING
Shifting the focus of mental health investment to people, connection and kindness.
Elizabeth Simpson, CEO, Manchester MIND
LET’S DITCH THE GOOD OLD DAYS
Deepened partnerships, strengthened communities and a better way of commissioning.
Fay Selvan, CEO, Big Life Group
FROM FEAR TO A COLLECTIVE RESPONSE
Challenging the racist structures in health, criminal justice, education, housing and employment.
Faye Bruce, Chairperson & Charles Kwaku-Odoi, Chief Officer, CAHN
RETRACING OUR PAST
Domestic violence and abuse services: taking time to understand, heal and pay attention to what matters.
Gail Heath, CEO, Pankhurst Trust
WE DID IT BEFORE WITH SPANISH FLU
Supporting blind and partially sighted people through two world wars and two deadly global pandemics.
Helen Doyle, Evidence & Impact Analyst and Robert Cooper, Director of Community Services, Henshaws
THEY BEAT US TO IT!
Strength, creativity and gift in a time of risk.
Helen Gatenby, Manager, M13 Youth Project
FINDING THE KEY TO UNLOCKING LOCKDOWN
Many older people are desperate for things to go back to the way they were.
Helen Hibberd, Co-ordinator, Chorlton Good Neighbours
MANCHESTER’S TIME FOR A ZERO CARBON RECOVERY
Identifying the hallmarks of a successful 21st century city.
Jonny Sadler, Programme Director, Manchester Climate Change Agency
POWERFUL AND LOUD AGAIN - NOT ‘VULNERABLE’!
Ignored, stigmatised and angry: the experience of disabled people.
Michele Scattergood, CEO, Breakthrough UK
THE CHANGE THAT PEOPLE EXPERIENCING MULTIPLE DISADVANTAGE WANT AND NEED
Invest, involve, understand and trust to make a best future.
Paul Pandolfo, Programme Manager and Tess Tainton, Involvement Officer, Inspiring Change Manchester
Rapid transformation of services for LGBT people.
Rob Cookson, Deputy CEO, LGBT Foundation
THE LOVELY PEOPLE WE WORK WITH DESERVE BETTER
Injustice, exclusion and the scandal of social care for people living with dementia.
Sally Ferris, CEO, Together Dementia Support
WE ALL NEED SOMEONE
Re-setting self and services for children and families in troubled times.
Shelley Roberts, Chief Executive, Home-Start
EFFICIENCY OR EQUALITY: THE FUTURE OF DIGITAL
Digital solutions can hit targets when working with young people but can they address difference and deep rooted inequality?
Simone Spray, CEO, 42nd Street
USEFUL CHANGES? SPEAKING UP AND MAKING THINGS BETTER
Ripping up the book in advice services.
Sinead O’Connor, CEO, CHAC
Throughout the report, you will find pages of quotes from the Manchester Poverty Truth Commission
The full report can be found below.