Almond Tree Strategic Consulting has supported Adviza Partnership to develop their funding strategy, win major contracts and project manage their implementation as well as supporting their governance.
We have supported the Community Council for Somerset (CCS) since 2015; helping them develop their strategy and plans and to secure funding.
CCS is a small community development charity, particularly concerned with rural communities in Somerset. They have a dynamic team who really care about making a difference and have had to re-invent themselves in response to cuts in public sector funding for rural community councils. This case study outlines how we have helped CCS develop and implement its change strategy since 2015.
In 2015, thanks to funding form the Lottery funded Big Assist programme, CCS commissioned us to help them develop a core narrative (or case for support) for their work. They were facing severe cuts in local and national government funding for rural sector charities and time-limited funding for their flagship Village Agents service.
Having developed a compelling core narrative for CCS, we were asked to help them develop a fundraising or income generation strategy, which we were delighted to do. The result was a strategy that sought to shift away from reliance on big (and small) core costs grants to a model of delivering a range of projects (big and small), each of which makes a contribution to core costs through full cost recovery; in effect an income diversification strategy.
Since 2016, CCS has retained us to support their fundraising through prospect research (trusts and foundations) and bid writing. We have helped them identify and secure funding from a number of sources, including winning a large contract commissioned by Somerset County Council to support carers in the county, funding for projects to support older people and to provide energy efficiency advice and to develop a Rural Somerset Crisis Fund to help people in crisis situations through small grants. We have helped CCS raise well over £1m, with more to come (we hope!) and CCS has almost doubled its annual income between 2015 and 2018.
REFRESHING THE STRATEGY
In 2018, CCS again engaged us to help them review and refresh their strategy and provide support for implementation planning, including strategic appraisal of a number of income generation options (in particular to grow earned income through social enterprise).
We are delighted to have had a role to play in CCS's successful income diversification and growth and to be continuing to support them with this work.
If you would like to talk to us further about the support we could offer your charity or social enterprise, please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org for a free initial telephone consultation.