Adur Voluntary Action

A member of the Adur and Worthing communities

About Adur Voluntary Action

Adur Voluntary Action (AVA) is an independent movement of voluntary, community and charitable groups and a registered charity founded in 1959. Our members work co-operatively to support one another in mutual aid, self-help, and the building of warm, trusting networks of activity.

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Latest posts

Cui Bono? Social change, civil society and the voluntary sector

Where does civil society, our "voluntary sectors", currently sit within the deluges of social and economic change Britain faces? Let's take a local example. Shoreham-by-Sea is awaiting a major planned office block development in Ham Road, experiencing a less-than-sightly, river-view-obstructing, block of flats (allegedly not even being advertised within Adur) on the former "Royal" Mail parcels depot, and observing the conversion into flats of the former Service Publications print works. Offices, and (mainly) expensive flats.

Yet the previously WSCC-run, now Adur District Council owned, Outdoor Activities Centre remains desolately empty, despite unspecific promises, and Burrscrofte sits empty ten years on. One can't help suspecting that here lie future flats or office blocks. Either of the latter would have made a splendid voluntary sector resource (indeed, an attempt by a local consortium of groups to achieve this in Burrscrofte when it closed ,in 2008 ! was summarily rejected by both local authorities).

The unasked , unanswered and politically unwanted question is in whose interests are these commercially driven, public and voluntary sector, austerity policies operating? The answer is a fixation with promotion of local economic growth - with no measurement of its diseconomies - and with feeding commercial interests, coupled with a public sector disinvestment in service provision. That's without pre-empting the enquiry into London's worst civilian fire since the War - though we are all entitled to our views on that, and enquiries don't always excavate at depth. The picture overall is not pretty, and will look even uglier when the hindsight of history becomes available to us, through the lens of what appears increasingly likely to be a changed public ethos, embodying renewed faith in the value of a public sector and its services.

Meanwhile, civil society - the local voluntary sector across UK - essentially passive, certainly politically frightened, seeks to hang on in there, fingers crossed. Perhaps it's past time to be more confidently speaking truth to power? When positive change does happen, the same voluntary and charitable organisations who were uncritically complicit with current policies will happily endorse their opposites. But on whose side were they when it really counted?

The amateur - a new bible for local voluntary activity

Excellent book on the heady virtues of independent amateurism

Good recent publication

Excellent recent publication

Recent publication

Excellent recent publication

Recommended recent book on voluntary action

Excellent recent publication available from AVA

Local Trust Empowered Communities update June 2017

How can communities become more empowered and vibrant in the next ten years? That’s the question driving ‘Empowered Communities in the 2020s’, a research and public engagement project led by Local Trust. Along with their research partner, IVAR, Local Trust wants to gather a wide range of views about the future of communities – including yours! Individuals, organisations, public services and community groups can all take part via the project website

or join the conversation on Twitter using #Empowered2020s.

Loss of Charities Minister

Adur charities are interested in why the government has failed to appoint a Charities Minister to speak up for and consult with the sector. Why?

Just before sunrise, 2017 summer solstice

Just before sunrise, 2017 summer solstice

Sunrise at Blackcap summer solstice 2017

Sunrise at Blackcap on Summer Solstice

Office block for Ham Road

Here's the Council press release:

"Plans to create a new multi-million pound office block on a Shoreham car park are taking another step forward - with the public being urged to have their say.

The site in Ham Road was formerly used by council staff who worked at the now demolished Adur Civic Centre opposite.

A design team is now preparing detailed proposals for the 0.3-hectare site, which will be used to provide workspace for local businesses.

Before a planning application for the redevelopment is submitted, members of the public are being encouraged to have their say on the scheme.

A drop-in consultation event will take place on June 26 from 3pm to 8pm in the Shoreham Centre in Pond Road.

An online consultation will then open on the council’s website and run for two weeks.

Comments received will then be used to guide the design team before they submit a detailed planning application."

This looks rather like the old Civic Centre moved across the road.

The public are encouraged to have their say in a two-week online consultation.