Power to Change Rural Community Hub Research

Durham Community Action, in partnership with Community First Yorkshire, was one of only three organisations to be awarded a research grant from the Power to Change Research Institute’s last application round.   Power to Change is a £150 million fund, endowed with money from the Big Lottery to address social needs by growing community businesses across England.

Durham Community Action’s research aims to better understand the size, scale, scope, potential growth and future pipeline of Community Businesses from amongst Village Halls, Rural Community Hubs and Rural Buildings. The research will focus on rural North Yorkshire and Durham Dales and will take place over the next several months.

‘We think this research is very timely and will give us a focus to talk with the trustees and the volunteers who run community buildings about how they see their local services for the future.  Village Halls and other hubs of activity in rural communities are locally well-known assets which are managed by the community.  They are excellent bases from which to develop and deliver a range of services which provide benefits for the local communities they serve"  says Jo Laverick, Executive Director of Durham Community Action. 

‘The term, Community Business, is not necessarily commonly understood. Groups and organisations may be missing out on a whole range of support and funding packages because they think it is not for them, or they don’t identify what they do as a community business"  she added.

In a call to get involved in shaping the future of local services, Jo asks all voluntary and community organisations in the Durham Dales area, who are locally rooted, trading for social benefit, accountable to their local communities and delivering community benefit to get involved with this research. From this, we’d like to generate a significant research report, which we can then use to inform future policy, practice and support across all rural communities.    

To access the E-Survey, please click here 

The survey must be completed by Monday 25th September