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Paper 7 - 30 January 2004 Meeting
ASSOCIATION OF HAMPSHIRE AND ISLE OF
WIGHT LOCAL AUTHORITIES
of ‘One Compact for Hampshire’ as a county wide initiative. That the
Hampshire Compact between Hampshire County Council is broadly welcomed as good
practice in strengthening the partnership way of working between the two
an individual officer is nominated by those districts that have not already
identified a lead officer to liaise with during the process.
The National Compact was launched in November 1998, a milestone in the
relationship between government and the voluntary and community sector. Usually
referred to as The Compact, its full title, Compact – getting it
right together, is the key to understanding what it is about.
The launch of the national Compact was just a starting point for
developing an ongoing partnership. It flagged up further work to develop five
Codes of Good Practice, all of which have now been published. These cover
Funding, Policy Development & Consultation, Volunteering, Black &
Minority Ethnic Organisations, and Community Organisations.
At the time of the launch it was acknowledged that the relationship
between government and the majority of organisations takes place at a local,
rather than national, level; therefore it has been a priority to develop local
In recognition of this the government has set a target for all local
authorities and NHS Trusts to be involved in developing a Compact by April 2004.
set out a
shared vision, values and objectives
· build on existing good relationships and to create new ones
· understand each other’s priorities & constraints
· discuss differences & manage disagreement positivelyprovide opportunity for continuous dialogue
resources – time & energy
· sharing of costs
· less confusion, less duplication
· making life simpler, especially for county wide organisations or those who work across more than one district
· building a shared understanding across all statutory partners of the role and contribution of the voluntary and community sector
knowledge, experience and skills; this may come through direct experienceof the
· access to the hard-to-reach
· advocacy and representation for people who find it difficult to articulate their own needs and aspirations
· innovation and flexibility; freedom from institutional pressures
· access to different sources of funding
· independence; the ability to nurture community development because they are not perceived as part of the ‘establishment’
· the contribution of volunteers
engagement with communities
· improved services for the community
· increased participation in the community strategy
· development of useful contacts
· practise genuine partnership
· encourage a diversity of voices to inform and influence policies and services
· regular contact with voluntary and community groups in touch with what is happening on the ground
· improve outcomes for external audits, inspections and reviews
Hampshire County Council
Community Action Hampshire
15 December 2003
Contact: 01962 846011/ louise.parker
01962 857360 / email@example.com
Communication and Dialogue
Resourcing and accountability
Monitoring and reviewing the implementation of the Compact
Compact on Relations between Government and the voluntary and community sector (1)
was published in November 1998 to provide a framework for the relationship
between the two sectors, and was seen as a starting point for local authorities
to adopt and adapt their own compacts.
provided the inspiration for the Hampshire Compact Development Group, which was
set up in early 2000 with representatives of the County Council and voluntary
and community organisations. The Compact between the Council and the voluntary
and community sector aims to create a new approach to working together.
is a strong thread running through many central Government initiatives relating
to the way local authorities work and consult with their communities. The
emphasis is firmly on `joined-up thinking' - co-ordinated planning and action to
deliver local solutions, innovation, continuous service improvement, and renewed
local democracy. The two sectors are already working on a multi-agency basis,
which brings its own challenges and opportunities. The national Compact has at
its heart "Getting it right together" - that is what we aim to do in
is one of the largest shire counties in England. It is an exceptionally diverse
county, combining small rural communities with large urban conurbations. Nearly
70% of the county is rural, home to 8% of the population. This diversity means
we need to address both rural and urban living issues.
County Council provides local services to 1.2 million people in the county,
outside the cities of Portsmouth and Southampton. Since 1997 those two cities
have had responsibility for all local services in their area. However, we
recognise that many voluntary and community organisations based outside the
Council's administrative area still have a continuing relationship with the
improve communication, understanding, collaboration, trust and respect between
Hampshire County Council and the voluntary and community sector in the true
spirit of partnership to the benefit of the people of Hampshire.
Both the Council and the voluntary and community sector share a common
objective: to work for the benefit of the communities of Hampshire and to ensure
high quality, accessible services, thereby promoting equality of opportunity and
There is recognition that they fulfil complementary roles. The Council supports
the voluntary and community sector, whose contribution is essential to the
effectiveness of the Council's activity and enables both sides to achieve more
together than separately.
The diversity of the voluntary and community sector, in terms of its size,
resources, membership and different working practices, is recognised as a
strength. Both sectors acknowledge the need for flexibility in setting up
structures and procedures, which are accessible to everyone.
Partnership, where all partners are equally important, is central to the success
of the relationship. This involves:
appreciation of each other's roles and objectives
appreciation of the constraints facing both the statutory and the voluntary and
Both sectors increase community involvement and participation by supporting
volunteer activity and recognise the knowledge, experience and expertise which
The Council acknowledges the independence and diversity of the voluntary and
community sector and the sector's right to challenge, comment or campaign on
policy and practice.
The voluntary and community sector acknowledges the Council's statutory
responsibilities, particularly in relation to Best Value, and the constraints
placed on it by central Government directives and performance indicators.
The voluntary and community sector also recognises the decision-making role of
elected members and their democratic responsibility to balance the needs of
everyone in Hampshire and work within the resources available.
The Council and the voluntary and community sector are committed to setting up
open and effective channels of communication to ensure that their aims and
aspirations are fully understood and advanced in the most effective way.
The Council and the voluntary and community sector recognise that relevant and
regular communication is a key to the success of their partnership. Both sectors
recognise that successful communication and partnership is dependent on mutual
respect and openness.
The Council and all organisations within the voluntary and community sector,
particularly umbrella organisations, recognise their responsibility to be
channels of communication.
The Development Group will review communication methods to ensure that the best
use is made of all mediums of communication from face to face contact, meetings
and newsletters to use of the World Wide Web.
A network of contacts will be established by the Development Group to provide
quick and guaranteed access to information. The Council will identify named
contacts in departments to help facilitate this access. The Development Group
will be responsible for publishing details of a network of contacts within both
sectors and for ensuring that the details are reviewed annually.
For enquiries relating to the Compact, the Development Group will always be the
first point of contact.
Both sectors undertake to respect the confidentiality of information, when given
access to it on that basis.
The Development Group will build on the existing framework of annual meetings
between the two sectors and publish details of its annual work programme.
Funding includes either: service level agreements or contracts, or grants.
The Development Group will develop a code of good practice for funding. The code
will set out principles of good funding and the accountability and
responsibilities of both sectors.
The Council will:
allocate resources to the voluntary and community sector in Hampshire against
clear, transparent and consistent criteria, taking account of priorities, Best
Value and value for money, and principles of equality, efficiency,
effectiveness, sustainability and accountability.
inform the voluntary and community sector about its funding priorities and
support the infrastructure of the voluntary and community sector to help
voluntary and community organisations develop the capacity to respond to the
needs and priorities of service users.
The voluntary and community sector will:
recognise and respect the need for accountability and the principles of Best
Value and value for money.
acknowledge the constraints the Council works under and its dependency on
Government funding and direction on spending priorities.
develop quality standards for service delivery that are appropriate to each
organisation, without undermining the contribution and involvement of
The Compact will help make the most of the wealth of knowledge, expertise and
experience available in both sectors, by developing mutual advice and support
networks to avoid duplication of effort and providing opportunities for staff
The Development Group will identify and develop ways of sharing and spreading
learning across the Council and other public bodies and the voluntary and
community sector in Hampshire. Our aim is to ensure continuous improvement in
the ways we work together. Activities might include joint training in areas such
as Information Technology and Best Value and quality issues.
Both sectors will assist each other with buildings, premises and equipment.
Charges may be appropriate.
Both sectors recognise that consultation is a two-way process which is in many
cases influenced by central Government. Both sectors agree to:
build on, co-ordinate, develop and improve existing consultation mechanisms
ensuring they are inclusive
appraise together new policies and procedures, particularly at the developmental
stage, to identify as far as possible implications for both sectors.
Both sectors agree to:
recognise the time constraints within which both parties have to work
allow reasonable timescales for a response, aiming for the Government's
recommended minimum of 12 weeks for written consultations. When this is not
possible, explain why a short response time has been set. Both sectors
recognise, however, that central Government timescales can be very short.
Both sectors agree to:
give each other advance warning of potential future consultations from central
Government and other agencies where possible
work together to lobby Government for early publication of consultation
timetables and realistic timescales.
Both sectors agree to:
explain what the consultation is about and whose views are being sought
provide a summary of the consultation and indicate where the full version is
use simple language and eliminate unnecessary jargon; where this is not
possible, provide an explanation of terms used in the consultation
provide information on the outcomes of the consultation process and the
provide consultation documents in a variety of accessible formats, as
respect the confidentiality of information within the constraints of the law and
the proper performance of public duties.
Both sectors agree to be sensitive to the additional costs and time involved in
consultations which may affect the ability of the voluntary and community sector
to take part.
The Council will make clear where change is possible within a consultation
exercise and how many stages of consultation there are going to be and with
The voluntary sector will:
publicise and provide information about consultations
use its infrastructure to encourage and support appropriate participation in
make clear whether it is making a response as a service provider, advocate, user
representative or campaigning organisation
the case of umbrella bodies, make clear whether their response is based on
consultation with members or accumulated experience and knowledge.
The County Council and the voluntary and community sector are jointly committed
to monitoring and reviewing the Compact in order to assess its continuing
effectiveness and impact.
The Development Group will continue to meet at regular intervals to:-
monitor progress against agreed action points and seek regular feedback
jointly evaluate both sectors' achievements and progress of work and determine
criteria for evaluating success on an annual basis
develop more detailed codes of good practice on the various sections in the
Compact, as the need for them becomes apparent. The annual meeting of the two
sectors will then decide on the adoption of any codes as an appendix to the
identify any new tasks that need to be undertaken and determine the work
programme for future years
review the composition of the Development Group and look at setting up any
necessary sub groups.
There will also be a further annual review of the Compact by a wider reference
group whose members will be agreed by the Development Group.
The Development Group will consider and set up appropriate mechanisms for
resolving conflicts and complaints
Progress on the Compact will be reported to the annual meeting of the Council
and the voluntary and community sector, and both sectors undertake to report to
their members and constituents on an annual basis.
Development of the Compact will also feed into the annual review of the
Council's Corporate Strategy. Improving relationships with the voluntary and
community sector is a major focus area under Aim 4 `Partnership for strong
speaking or acting in support of or on behalf of another person(s) in accordance
with their wishes. It helps people to speak out for what they want or need, and
encourages them to tell others about how they feel and what is important to
is a statutory responsibility for local authorities to achieve continuous
improvement in services through a combination of economy, efficiency and
effectiveness. All of an authority's services must be reviewed by challenging
how and why they are provided, comparing them with the performance of others,
consulting with stakeholders and testing their competitiveness against external
Campaign or lobby is
to try to influence decision-makers to introduce specific, and/or change
existing, policies and programmes.
the process of seeking and listening to views within defined parameters. This
includes seeking information and advice about future decisions, and testing the
impact of decisions which have already been taken.
the agreement between the purchaser (sometimes called the commissioner) of a
service and the provider about the specification for the service to be delivered
and the arrangements for delivering and paying for it. Also included are
arrangements for monitoring and ending the contract. Contracts are legally
simply means the varieties and differences within voluntary and community groups
and the local community.
is the assessment of the value of a project, piece of work, or service. Its
purpose is to help an organisation decide whether it is achieving what it wants
to and if it needs to do anything differently in the future.
The guidance, direction
and supervision of a charity by its trustees, members etc, in accordance with
its governing document or constitution.
the routine collection and recording of information, sometimes against statutory
performance indicators, on the activities of an organisation. It provides
information on what an organisation is doing, but makes no judgement about the
value of the outcome or results of those activities.
basically getting to know people. It is the process by which relationships and
contacts between people and organisations are established, nurtured and used for
mutual benefit. These links between people and organisations give access to
ideas, information, resources and expertise, which might not otherwise be
is when one or more organisations work together to achieve a shared and clear
set of objectives. There is a clear understanding of the contribution of each
organisation, which takes into account their differences, and there is equal
respect for the role and experience of all partners. A successful partnership
depends on the sharing of information and decision-making.
Indicators are tools
that measure, simplify and communicate important issues, trends and standards of
performance. They provide a benchmark against which progress can be measured
year on year and provide comparisons between organisations. They usually measure
cost, economy, efficiency and effectiveness.
written contracts which set out how two organisations will work together over an
agreed period. They are not as onerous as a typical contract and usually contain
less legalistic language but may be legally enforced.
The Statutory sector
is the name given to organisations created through Acts of Parliament whose
functions are determined by the law. Local authorities, including parish and
town councils, are democratically elected and are accountable to the voters and
central government. They have legal responsibilities for the social well-being,
economic development, environment and health of the people they serve. Other
statutory agencies, such as health authorities and the probation, police, fire
& rescue and ambulance services, are not directly elected and are
accountable to the appropriate Secretary of State.
The Voluntary and
are: formally structured; not-for-profit (although they may make surpluses);
independent and not part of government; managed by unpaid, voluntary management
committees or boards of trustees; have paid employees and volunteers; may be
registered charities and/or companies limited by guarantee
are: local community and self-help groups; more informal; often made up entirely
of volunteers; any staff are likely to be part-time; independent; without
regular income or funding
are the group of people responsible for the control and management of a charity,
which includes members of a charitable association's management committee and
directors of charitable companies. Certain specific statutory duties arise from
being a trustee.
also sometimes referred to as intermediary organisations - are an important
force in the voluntary sector, fulfilling four main functions: development,
services to other organisations, liaison and representation. However, it is
acknowledged that not all umbrella organisations perform all of these functions.
(Deakin Commission 1996)
are the people who benefit from or use a service. They are also called
customers, clients, consumers, beneficiaries, and recipients.
is an activity that a person (a volunteer) chooses to undertake, whereby
they do something to benefit either an individual or a group (not relatives) or
to benefit the environment, and for which they receive no payment.
1 - This document is available as an Adobe Acrobat PDF file - Compact on Relations Between Government and the Voluntary Sector in England (283kb).
|Author:||Nick Goulder, Director|
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