Volunteer managers' fund 'is inaccessible'

Association of Volunteer Managers says internet-only access is a barrier for many

The Government's £3m fund established to support volunteer managers will prove to be inaccessible, according to the Association of Volunteer Managers.

Details of the fund were announced last week. The support will include a total of £1.6m for 25 volunteer centres and councils for voluntary service, designed to help them assist hard-to-reach volunteer managers. Another £200,000 will go to volunteering charity Volunteering England to help it set up an online information bank for volunteer managers.

Debbie Usiskin, vice-chair of the Association of Volunteer Managers, said many volunteer managers, especially in charity shops, did not have internet access and would be unable to access the new resources.

She called for the decision-making process determining who would be awarded funds under the new scheme to be made more transparent. "I hope there will be a clear, publicised set of criteria against which decisions will be made," she said.

The Office of the Third Sector denied that the fund was inaccessible, saying that more than half of it would be used for outreach programmes.

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