Locality has been selected to lead the government’s £15m programme to recruit and train 5,000 community organisers.
Locality, which is the new charity formed through the merger of community organisations bassac and the Development Trusts Association (DTA), will deliver the scheme with 11 partners, including Urban Forum, Voice4Change England and the Centre for Social Justice.
The charity has also already recruited what it calls ten “kickstarter” organisations which will use their local knowledge and expertise to support the recruitment of community organisers and act as local hosts.
Steve Wyler, chief executive designate of Locality, said: “As an independent and community-led network of local practitioners, Locality is well-placed to ensure community organisers are truly rooted in the needs of their communities. This is an exciting opportunity to create a modern, indigenous English version of community organising with a life and a voice of its own that reflects and nurtures the genuine ‘Big Society’ on the ground”.
The programme will train and support up to 5,000 community organisers from April 2011 to March 2015. Up to 500 of these will be full-time “senior” community organisers and 4,500 will be part-time and voluntary organisers who will support the senior organisers.
The senior organisers will be paid £20,000 a year during their first year.
The programme was created by the Office for Civil Society in the Cabinet Office (OCS) and forms a key element of the social action pillar of the Big Society.
Locality’s partners for the programme are –
National and specialist partners:
Faith-based Regeneration Network
Church Urban Fund
Manchester Metropolitan University
Goldsmiths University, South East London
Trafford Hall, Chester
St Katherine’s Foundation, East London
Open College Network, Yorkshire and the Humber
Barton Hill Settlement, Bristol
Birmingham Settlement, Birmingham
Cambridge House, South London
Community Links, East London
Goodwin Development Trust, Hull
Keystone Development Trust, Norfolk
Kirkgate Arts, Cumbria
Manchester Metropolitan University, Manchester
Penwith Community Development Trust, Cornwall
St Peters Partnerships, Tameside, Greater Manchester
Note: Since going to press Locality has informed Civil Society that it mistakenly included the Centre for Social Justice (CSJ) on its national and specialist partners list. Locality said it approached the CSJ in developing the bid, but the CSJ chose not to be involved in any bids to government and no further discussions took place.