Pears Foundation joins £7million Government fund to invest in the future of volunteering

The Foundation will be investing £550,000, matched with £550,000 from DCMS, in six of its existing partner organisations

17th December 2021

Pears Foundation is pleased to be one of three funders working in partnership with the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport to match and distribute funding through the Volunteering Futures Fund. 

The Foundation will be investing £550,000, matched with £550,000 from DCMS, in six of its existing partner organisations to assist the development and expansion of their volunteer models.  We are very proud to be supporting: 

  • Home-Start UK to build and develop their platforms, systems and processes to increase volunteer opportunities and assist with volunteer recruitment, retention and training. 
  • Big Brothers Big Sisters UK to grow its youth mentoring programme to another two local authority areas. 
  • Coram Beanstalk to build new volunteer networks in three geographic areas of unmet need with high levels of deprivation. 
  • Literacy Pirates to invest in their digital infrastructure to grow the number of volunteers in response to increased demand. 
  • Sense to expand their ‘Virtual Buddying’ pilot, to bring people with and without disabilities together to build more resilient communities through the power of volunteering. 
  • Mencap to co-produce a programme in three geographic areas to support people with a learning disability to be connected and included in the place they live through volunteering. 

Sir Trevor Pears CMG, Executive Chair, Pears Foundation, said: 

For so many civil society organisations, volunteers are the backbone of their work; the extraordinary volunteer response to Covid-19 has only served to emphasise this. Now, as we look forward, it’s crucial that we support these organisations to build on that response, remove remaining barriers to recruitment, and further develop the infrastructure to support and invest in their volunteers. 

We are delighted to be working in partnership again with DCMS to support our long-term Partners in this work, delivering projects to develop volunteering opportunities for, and for the benefit of, people with disabilities and young people.” 

The wider Volunteering Futures Fund, which combines £6 million from Government and £1.15 million from Pears Foundation and NHS Charities Together, aims to provide volunteering opportunities to a diverse range of people.  The majority of the funding will be granted through Arts Council England, who will distribute £4.7 million to fund training and support for high quality volunteering projects. 

Nigel Huddleston, Minister for Civil Society, said: 

“Volunteering offers so many benefits to individual people and their local communities, which is why rolling out greater opportunities across the country is part of our commitment to levelling up.  

“I’d like to thank Pears for their financial backing of the Volunteering Futures Fund, and I’m delighted that the six unique charities will be receiving support from the government and the Foundation. 

“I would urge everyone to get involved where they can.”