Greater Manchester Centre for Voluntary Organisation

What we do

Our activities comprise a range of projects and partnership, services and networks, which are summarised below. Alternatively, you can download a PDF of our current work here.

To keep up to date with our work you can sign up to one of more of our e-bulletins.


Ambition for Ageing
Ambition for Ageing is a five-year programme funded by the Big Lottery Fund aimed at reducing the social isolation of older people in Greater Manchester. The £10 million project is being delivered by a partnership of organisations led by GMCVO.

Ardwick Green Histories Project
GMCVO has received a Heritage Lottery Fund Sharing Heritage grant to run a project exploring the histories of Ardwick Green through the memories of local people.

Community Energy Greater Manchester
Renewable energy can be a great investment for a community hub – cutting bills, creating revenue and insulating against volatile energy costs, while educating and inspiring community members. Working with 10:10, GMCVO has secured funding from Tudor Trust to support up to 25 community hubs in Greater Manchester to finance the installation of solar panels.

GM Futures
GMCVO is part of a new strategic partnership that will enable a collaborative approach to the European Social Fund (ESF 2014-20) funding opportunities. The work of the partnership, working under the banner GM Futures, will contribute to the development of a more coherent and effective integrated employment and skills system in Greater Manchester which supports individuals, employers and communities.

Greater Manchester AddVentures
AddVentures is a new initiative that will provide a shared legal and governance structure that groups and projects can simply ‘plug in’ to, and broker support, services and resources from across all sectors for the projects it hosts.

Greater Manchester Talent Match
GMCVO is leading the Talent Match partnership in Greater Manchester – a Big Lottery funded programme aimed at helping the most disadvantaged young people along the pathway into employment.

Greater Manchester Voluntary Sector Support
GMCVO leads a partnership of organisations involved in providing support (infrastructure) to voluntary organisations in Greater Manchester.

Social Enterprise
GMCVO is developing a range of projects and services relating to social enterprise, as well as providing information about support, networks and resources for social enterprises and entrepreneurs in Greater Manchester.

Stimulating Demand for Apprenticeships
Our Stimulating the Demand for Apprenticeships project ended in October 2015 and proved very successful in raising the voluntary sector’s awareness of the advantages of apprenticeships.

Volunteering Greater Manchester Partnership
Funding for the Volunteering Greater Manchester project ceased at the end of 2013, but the formation of a VGM Partnership has been established to take forward an agreed 'vision for volunteering' in Greater Manchester and continue the development of volunteering at a strategic level.


Big Assist
GMCVO is an approved ‘supplier’ for Big Assist, a Lottery-funded programme to support VCS infrastructure organisations to be more efficient, effective and sustainable. Under the programme, infrastructure organisations can apply for a voucher to exchange through an online market place for support delivered through consultancy, training, coaching and e-learning across a range of topics.

Community enterprise
Start-up and sustainability of services and activities based on a commercial model but for community benefit. Support includes identifying aspirations, the most appropriate organisational structure, creating a business plan, market awareness, and how to measure success.

Community hubs
Specialist support within GMCVO with the task of strengthening the voluntary and community sector through the development of ‘hubs’ – places or spaces that generate community or neighbourhood activity.

Conferences and events
Occasional events addressing key policy and practice issues affecting the voluntary and community sector in Greater Manchester.
For details, please contact:
Tanya Coutts,, 0161 277 1002.

Our consultancy service offers in-depth support on a wide range of topics including project and change management, business planning, organisational development including governance advice, collaboration and partnership development, consortia development and social market support and service recovery.

GMCVO Databases has a wealth of experience working with voluntary organisations in consulting and delivering effective customer relationship management (CRM) systems. Our solutions are cost-effective and powerful, allowing organisations to manage their data, centralise their communications and monitor staff and volunteer performance.

Information and publications
News and information on issues affecting the voluntary sector via our website, various newsletters, an occasional policy journal and briefings.

We undertake research to develop our understanding of the needs of communities and we collate and disseminate research findings. We have a voluntary sector research resource.


Community Buildings Information Network (COMBINE)
Provides details of training and events plus other information to a network of people involved in managing community buildings.

Employer Skills Group
The purpose of the ESG is to provide a platform for employers to give their perspective on current and future skills needs in the sector and their training provision requirements.

Greater Manchester BME Network
Provides networking opportunities and improve access to infrastructure support for black and minority ethnic (BME) voluntary and refugee voluntary and community organisations across Greater Manchester.

Greater Manchester Third Sector Research Network
The network is a forum for academics and practitioners to learn from each other and exchange experiences. It aims to provide an open space to discuss issues related to finding out information and conducting research within the voluntary sector in Greater Manchester.

Greater Manchester Trustees Network
Supports trustees through the provision of information on policy and good practice, relevant events, training and resources.