Cultural Playing Field

Third Sector Network meeting with the Wales Housing, Regeneration and Heritage Minister by Robin Simpson
November 29, 2012, 11:05 am
Filed under: meetings | Tags: , , , , ,

I was in Cardiff on Wednesday to take part in a Third Sector Network meeting with the Housing, Regeneration and Heritage Minister, Huw Lewis. The Welsh Government has a statutory duty to promote the interests of voluntary sector organisations in the exercise of all its functions. Each Government Minister reports to bi-annual meetings with representatives of the voluntary sector.

The meetings with the Housing, Regeneration and Heritage Minister reflect the breadth of his portfolio: on Wednesday much of the meeting was taken up with discussion of the Housing Bill, the Government’s Regeneration Consultation and the forthcoming Heritage Bill. We also talked about rural community assets and sustaining them for the future, considering the possibilities of local community groups taking responsibility for the running (and ownership) of community buildings.

I spoke in support of a paper on private sector business support for voluntary sector organisations for arts and sport. The Minister had previously expressed interest in encouraging the private business sector to support voluntary arts and sports organisations. We discussed the fact that most voluntary organisations are very small and hard to find, so businesses that want to do something tend to focus on a few large charities and the majority who really need the support miss out. We talked about ways to identify and match small voluntary organisations with small and medium-sized businesses. The Minister asked the relevant third sector representatives to do some scoping work on this and meet with Government officials to discuss a way forward.

Robin Simpson.

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