Provide critical funding knowledge to the community
Hull City Council’s Regeneration Department focuses on supporting businesses in the city and Local Voluntary and Community Sector organisations. Hull’s City Plan, launched in 2013, set out to create 7,500 jobs for local people through projects and investments to drive the delivery of a clear set of ambitions.
Having previously subscribed to Idox funding and information services, Hull City Council made the decision to purchase Idox Open4Funding portal in order to give free access to top quality funding information for Hull’s Voluntary and Community Sector (VCSE) organisations.
The current pandemic has meant that more organisations are struggling, they see a greater need for the funding services in order to support the increase in demand. With the reduction in available funding for local authorities, Hull City Council needed to provide support and knowledge to their local community throughout this critical period.
Boost local economy through valuable resident support
Hull City Council carry out twice-weekly COVID-19 funding specific searches and sharing this information widely. The O4F portal allows their much valued VCSE organisations access to good quality, potential funding opportunities that can help them to continue to grow and deliver the incredibly valuable support on offer to Hull residents.
Promotion of the O4F portal within Hull’s Voluntary and Community Sector has taken place through local funding fairs, delivering training sessions to individual organisations, creating collateral, website publication and working alongside Idox to action training events with local groups new to the system. This has led to a wide range of small voluntary and community sector organisations, registered charities, community groups, Community Interest Companies (CICs) and large not-for-profit organisations benefiting from funding success.
Julie Edge, Planning, Policy and Development Officer, Hull City Council, comments on the functionality of the portal: “O4F is valued by our local Voluntary and Community Sector organisations and we hear great reports on how easy it is to use. Some people have stated that without this portal they are not sure where they would get their funding knowledge from.”
Some key features that the Council find most beneficial are:
- Longevity (O4F has 30 years of funding experience)
- Provides a one-stop-shop of funding information
- Time saving
- Resource saving
- Maximises funding potential
Reported funding successes exceed expectations
Since purchasing the O4F portal, there have been 186 reports of funding successes, although not everyone reports on their success. Of these 186 successes, 81% are for the £10k and under category – supporting the smaller, more community-based organisations, which the portal was originally intended to support.
It has also been reported that as a result of the O4F portal £2,824,176 of funding has been secured so far. This value is expected to rise substantially, as more organisations continue to look for funding support and recognise the value that the portal delivers to Hull’s Voluntary and Community Sector organisations and the people it serves.