CRESR

Voluntary and community sector

CRESR has expertise and a long standing interest in the study of the voluntary and community sector. We undertake research both for and about the sector.

Our work focuses on:

  • measuring and mapping the voluntary and community sector
  • measuring outcomes and impact, including of social return on investment
  • approaches to social investment and funding
  • understanding sustainability, resilience and financial vulnerability
  • engagement and participation of communities

We also undertake research on specific social, economic and policy issues for clients. For example, we carried out research on hidden homelessness for the housing charity Crisis and have looked at the role of community businesses for rural community councils.

Search our work


Social Investment in Cumbria Research

Project Director: Professor Peter Wells
Project Duration: 2014

This study explored the viability and feasibility of loan funding for voluntary and community sector organisations in Cumbria. The focus of the study was on loans in the range £5k-50k. This reflected feedback from VCS organisations in Cumbria  that this segment of the social investment market is underserved in Cumbria. The study was conducted in partnership with the Charity Bank.

The project team also included Kiri Langmead, Ellen Bennett (Sheffield Hallam University) and Professor Tony Chapman (Durham University).
 


The State of the Former Coalfields: Benchmarking Study

Project Director: Dr Tony Gore
Project Duration: 2014

A study exploring current characteristics and conditions in former coalfield areas of Britain in comparison with regional and national benchmarks. It involved assembly and analysis of a range of quantitative indicators on issues such as demography, employment, unemployment, health, housing, education and deprivation on the one hand; and a qualitative survey of community and voluntary sector scope and activity, with particular reference to available sources and changing scale of funding on the other. The analysis found that better connected areas have undergone substantial regeneration and diversification, whereas more peripheral coalfields continue to experience serious economic and social dislocation.


Evaluation of the Rotherham Social Prescribing Pilot

Project Director: Chris Dayson
Project Duration: 2013-2017

Evaluation of the social and economic costs and benefits of Voluntary Action Rotherham’s Social Prescribing Pilot being delivered on behalf NHS Rotherham CCG.


Evaluation of the Sheffield Community Network

Project Director: Dr Richard Crisp
Project Duration: 2012-2013

Impact evaluation of the Sheffield Community Network which aims to promote digital inclusion and social enterprises within disadvantaged areas in Sheffield.


Impact evaluation of the Volunteer for Stronger Communities project

Project Director: Richard Crisp
Project Duration: 2012-2013

This project evaluated the impact of 15 projects to promote volunteering that were funded through the Volunteering for Stronger Communities programme. The Programme used volunteering to help improve employability and strengthen in the context of economic uncertainty.


Get in touch

For further information please contact Sarah Pearson at s.pearson@shu.ac.uk or call 0114 225 4902,
or Professor Peter Wells at p.wells@shu.ac.uk or call 0114 225 6262.

Key clients

Action Together
Age UK
Big Lottery Fund
Bolton CVS
British Red Cross
Cabinet Office
Church Urban Fund
Community Fund
Community Links
CVS Rochdale
Economic and Social Research Council
Foundations Independent Living Trust (FILT)
GMCVO
Groundwork
Groundwork UK
Health Action Local Engagement
Healthwatch Lambeth
Heritage Lottery Fund
Home Office
Humber and Wolds Rural Community Council
Involve Yorkshire and Humber
Joseph Rowntree Foundation
Lloyds Bank Foundation for England and Wales
Local Trust
Macc
National Association for Voluntary and Community Action (NAVCA)
National Council for Voluntary Organisations
NHS Nottingham City CCG
Northern Rock Foundation
Power to Change
Rotherham Hospital Aftercare Service
Rural Action Derbyshire
Salford CVS
South Yorkshire Housing Association
Stockport Metropolitan Borough Council
Tesco
Trussell Trust
Voluntary Action Rotherham
Yorkshire Adoption Agency
Yorkshire Rural Community Council
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