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


If you have been phoned by a company claiming you have in the past committed to donate a sum of money towards donations of books to local schools in Adur, please ask for written evidence and do not pay anything or get drawn into discussion, They are very convincing!



Adur Community Network 2017 meetings

Adur Community Network 2017 meetings

Chair: Andy Brook

Hon Sec: Emma Crowter

29 June

28 September

30 November

All start with lunch at 12 noon, at the Old School House, Ham Road, Shoreham-by-Sea
29 Jun 2017 at 12:00pm
until 29 Jun 2017 at 2:30pm
The Old School House
Ham Road

Lloyds Bank Foundation sounds alarm about local voluntary sector

Lloyds Bank Foundation have just published "Facing Forward: how small and medium sized charities can adapt to survive" (download link:

Actually, it's not as simple as they seem to imply. The report focuses on several fundamental factors that are effectively destroying the local voluntary sector, and these are mainly related to government austerity policies, and to an obsession with commissioning all work using competitive tendering. In combination, these are both reducing the size of the pot of funding available, as the entire public sector is squeezed; and making it all but impossible for small local charities to compete. Contracts are issued that take no account of the locally rooted charitable sector, its priorities or geographical areas of charitable concern. Public authorities seek to reduce their own workloads by issuing bigger contracts covering wider areas, hence cutting out locally active groups. In sociological terms, a culture of "community" is superseded by one of "association": contractual and competitive relationships, rather than co-operative and trusting ones.

This report tells us nothing new, repeating work done several years ago by Civil Exchange supported by the Baring Foundation, which developed a barometer of independence for the local voluntary sector, and pinpointed that it was falling fast. Bad weather indeed, and detailed research undertaken by the Coalition for Independent Action had already highlighted five years ago (see for their legacy site). Their work, however, was systematically ignored because they had the courage to call a spade a spade, challenging ideological prejudice rather than seeking continual accommodation inside what was evidently a bonfire of long-established values.

Sadly, the recommendations from the Lloyds report are just as inept as NAVCA's "Change for Good" (see Rather than challenging the fundamentals of a destructive culture, they continue the well trodden path of encouraging the sector to try to seek further accommodation, even to the extent of recommending we take an interest in the latest dose of government vacuity, branded as "Shared Society". It is very depressing to see a supposedly serious research report treating such an empty, unoperationalised concept (and remember the "Big" Society?) and an insult to the intelligence of many committed people in the sector.

So read "Facing Forward" by all means, and consider its analysis of the problems we face, plagiarised as it is from the earlier work of others. But analyse its model of adaptation very closely, and you will look in vain for any use of the word "campaign".

Adrian Barritt

Adur Voluntary Action

Farewell Civic Centre

The final hours of Ian Lowrie's former office...

Men in Sheds Success Story

Men in Sheds Success Story

Expect no increase in donations or government funding, NCVO warns

Expect no increase in donations or government funding, NCVO warns

WSCC Election results

AVA sends its congratulations to three Adur District Council elected members with whom we have long worked, and who were successful in the recent West Sussex County Council election. So, well done, Ann Bridges, Dave Simmons, Debbie Kennard.

With a change in ward boundaries, there are now five members sitting for Adur at County, and we look forward to a refreshed and vocal representation of our area's priorities, including our local voluntary sector's contribution and challenges.

Can you help AVA to understand Facebook properly? Is it really worth using?

Does AVA have anybody out there who understands how Facebook operates? Who can advise me on why the reach of AVA postings varies so much? What is really going on? Why is our "organic reach" so low? Why does paying for promotion increase reach but not likes or re-postings? Why can't I see all our recent postings? Who chooses who sees AVA postings in their time lines? Is it all worth it? Help!

Adrian, Adur Voluntary Action

Your Library Needs You

Everyone welcome at our first-ever Family History Day!On Saturday 13 May Worthing Library will be hosting a genealogical extravaganza for all the family! Meet experts in the field offering top tips for beginners, plus advice for the more advanced genealogists.

We’ll also have some great illustrated talks, plus Information Librarians and Archivists will be on hand to help you explore Ancestry, Findmypast and other online sources.

Children are welcome too at our special family-themed storytime, then follow our leafy trail and find out about your family history with our quick quiz!

Can you spare some time this summer to help children enjoy reading?We are looking for volunteers to help us run the Summer Reading Challenge in libraries. We need volunteers who can help families register to take part, listen to children talk about books they have read and hand out rewards and encourage children to keep reading.

Whether you have a little or a lot of time to spare, if you’re interested in helping families enjoy reading we want to hear from you! Find out more online, or ask in your local library.

Bath, book, bed – for babies and toddlersBedtime battles can be exhausting, that's why Book Trust – the national ‘books for babies’ charity – has devised Bath, Book, Bed: a simple solution to sleepless nights. Did you know that a regular nightly bedtime routine is associated with improved sleep in young children?

There's nothing better than snuggling up and sharing a soothing bedtime story to send them off to the land of nod and your local library has a great selection to choose from, right from birth through to preschool.

Your library supporting mental healthWe will be supporting Mental Health Awareness Week 8-14 May. Do you know about the ways your library can support mental health?

Research has shown that reading can reduce the symptoms of depression and improve wellbeing. We have books and information including the Reading Well Books on Prescription for mental health titles which are free to reserve, our eBookwellbeing collection and eMagazines covering many different interests and topics.

Or come to one of our regular daytime events and meet new people while relaxing with colouring, knitting and nattering, playing board games or just having a cup of tea and a chat.

Help and support for people living with dementiaWe are supporting Dementia Awareness Week 14-20 May with Dementia Awareness drop-ins and Dementia Friends sessions in several libraries. If you would like to become a Dementia Friend, increase your understanding of dementia and think about the small things that you can do to make a difference to people affected by dementia in your community, see if there is a session near you.

We also offer the Reading Well Books on Prescription for dementia book collection for people living with dementia, their carers, family and friends and a Reminiscence Collection including special packs on different themes. If you or someone you know needs help to use the library because of dementia, please speak to staff at your local library.

Thinking of starting your own business?Our brand new business information newsletter can help established businesses or those just starting out.

It will be packed full of useful information, such as;

- Guidance on using COBRA, our online small business resource

- Alerts and reminders about our business information drop-in events and other events across West Sussex

- Reviews of new business books in the library

- Contact details for support organisations

You can also find lots of useful information now on our dedicated business information webpage

Step into the pastDo you enjoy reading about the past but prefer fiction to fact? Then have a look at the historical fiction display at your local library.

Find even more in our eBook or eAudiobook collections. There will be something for everyone!

Talk on Sir Patrick MooreTo celebrate the 60th anniversary of the BBC’s Sky at Night programme, Dr John Mason will give a talk on the late astronomer, author and broadcaster who lived in Selsey.

It will take place at West Sussex Record Office, Chichester on Tuesday 27 June, 7.00pm. Limited tickets at £8, available in advance on 01243 753602 or email for more information.

Welly Concert supports Esteem

Now isn't AVA fortunate (a bit smug, actually) to have The Duke of Wellington as our local? Last night's fund raising concert raised over £300 for Esteem, helping young people to get on in an often challenging world. Here's to the owners, staff, regulars, locals, visitors and all who supported this event in aid of a locally-rooted cause very close to our hearts.