The chair of the national membership body for the local voluntary sector says he has
heard four key messages from listening to members
Six months ago, I had the privilege to be directly elected chair of Navca, an honour I
am determined to repay.
Our members are the core of the movement for local social action. As local
infrastructure bodies, they support the development and sustainability of local
voluntary and community sector groups across England. Together, Navca’s
members represent a critical component of civil society, and without them the VCS
and communities would be much weaker.
A significant part of the chair’s role is to listen and learn, making my relationship
different from that which the Navca staff team have with our members, but
demanding it always complements those relationships. When I stood for election, I
promised I would “connect” with the Navca members: be available, respond
promptly and, above all, visit members whenever invited.
A stream of invitations (20 visits made to date and more booked over coming
months) followed. I have spoken at members’ conferences and AGMs, met chief
officers, chairs of trustees, staff and volunteers, as well as hearing from many
members during our engagement programme for our new strategy