Volunteering Futures Fund Evaluation

An independent evaluation of the Volunteering Futures Fund.

About the study

The Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS) have commissioned NatCen Social Research and RSM UK Consulting to conduct an independent evaluation of the Volunteering Futures Fund (VFF).

The VFF, launched by DCMS in 2021, aims to support high quality volunteering opportunities for young people and those who experience barriers to volunteering. To do so, the Fund will test solutions to known barriers using micro, flexible, and digital volunteering models. The Fund is delivered through three lead delivery partners: Arts Council England (ACE), NHS Charities Together (NHSCT) and Pears Foundation.

The evaluation aims to understand how the Fund was designed, set-up and implemented as well as  lessons learned across project, and the impact of the VFF on the outcomes for both volunteers and organisations.

Who is carrying out the research?

This research is being carried out by NatCen Social Research in collaboration with RSM UK Consulting.

Taking part 

Why have I been selected to take part?

Interviews with grantholders: As part of our research, we are looking to conduct interviews with grantees across the three delivery partners. We are contacting you because your organisation received a grant from either ACE, NHSCT or the Pears Foundation, which was funded through the VFF.

Interviews with volunteers: We are looking to carry out interviews with volunteers across ACE projects. We are contacting you due to your role as a volunteer at a project that received a grant from ACE, which was funded through the VFF.

Why take part?

This evaluation will help DCMS to understand the contribution of the VFF to the Voluntary and Community sector across England and to identify lessons and successes to inform future programmes. Your knowledge and insights are key to this evaluation and we look forward to hearing about your experiences of the VFF.

What will taking part involve?

Interviews with grantholders
  • The interview will be with an RSM researcher.
  • It will take place between December 2022 and February 2023.
  • The interview will take place over the phone or video for up to 60 minutes.
  • During the interview you will be asked about your experience of applying for and delivering your VFF funded project.
  • Your participation in this evaluation is entirely voluntary and if you agree to participate you are free to change your mind at any point prior to, during, and after the interview. During the interview you are also free to not answer any questions you would prefer not to answer.
Interviews with volunteers
  • The interview will be with a NatCen or RSM researcher.
  • It will last up to 45 minutes and take place by telephone or video call.
  • The interview will cover topics such as your previous experience of volunteering (if any), experiences of the volunteering opportunity (including recruitment and participation), and what impacts, if any, you think your volunteering has had for yourself, other people or the project.
  • Your participation is completely voluntary, and you do not have to take part. Even if you agree to take part, you are free to withdraw at any stage of the interview.
  • As a small thank you for your time, you will receive a £20 shopping voucher.

What will happen to any information I give?

The data collected will be confidential and only be used for research purposes. NatCen and RSM will use your data to write a report for DCMS that will be publicly available. No individual or organisation will be identifiable in the research report. However, as the number of organisations involved in project is small, it may be possible that DCMS will be able to deduce which ones have taken part.

We will treat the information you give us in the strictest confidence under the Data Protection Act 2018 and the UK General Data Protection Regulation (UK GDPR). With your consent, we will audio record the interviews so that we have an accurate record of what is said. The recorder is encrypted and the recording will be stored securely on our computer system in line with data protection legislation. Only the research team will have access to the recordings and the data will be securely deleted at the end of the project. With your permission, we may use anonymous quotes in our report to DCMS.

Contact us

If you have any questions about the evaluation or would like to find out more, please contact us at vffevaluation@natcen.ac.uk

Privacy notice

For more information on how NatCen will handle your personal information, please refer to the privacy notice.