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A Collaboration for Community Benefit

BD Giving to lead social infrastructure contract bid.

Organisations from the local voluntary and community sector have voted for BD Giving to lead the group of organisations that will shape the bid for the borough’s new social infrastructure contract.

The ‘social infrastructure support service contract’ is awarded to an organisation to support the voluntary, community and social enterprise sector (VCSE) in Barking and Dagenham.  

We are delighted to announce we will work with partners across the VCSE to build and launch a Community Benefit Society that will support the capacity and collaboration of the social sector in Barking and Dagenham

A Community Benefit Society is the legal name for a community-led membership organisation. They operate on a ‘one-member, one-vote’ principle. This means it’s a great structure for collaboration and equality between members.

Leading this work will be BD Giving’s Head of Place, Nicki Lane, who grew up around Barking and Dagenham. Nicki’s background in community engagement and history of working with the local authority enable her to connect the dots between the needs of residents, available assets, and resources to be sourced.

Nicki is driven by a desire to put the community at the front and centre of realising local ambitions. 

“We can all work hard to create an amazing place but if what we do doesn’t align with the opportunities that local people want - and the lives they want to lead - then we are wasting our time. BD Giving can't do this alone. For people to live their best lives here, the VCSE sector must unite to make our borough more resilient. This contract is our opportunity to become stronger together.”

As host of the contract, we will set out how together we can connect the VCSE and better meet residents’ needs and ambitions. 

To get the collaboration started, Nicki is inviting members of the VCSE to two meetings; the first in-person to review the tender and shape the content that will be developed around the agreed framework, the second an online meeting to finalise the proposal ready for submitting to the council.

Get involved

If you’d like to get involved there are two meetings you can attend.

At the first meeting we will shape the social infrastructure bid. It takes place on 22 April at 13:30-15.00 at The BEC, in Barking. 

Click here to register to attend meeting 1.

The second meeting will be held online on 30 April at 14.00-15.00. This meeting will focus on finalising the tender bid ready for submitting on the 7th of May.  

Click here to register to attend meeting 2.

Background to the social infrastructure contract

BD_Collective held the social infrastructure contract with the council up until now. Since 2019 BD_Collective has cultivated networks that connect people, community groups and local providers around shared issues, such as food poverty, to work together to find solutions. You can read their learning report about their work in the last five years, here.

BD Giving was one of two local entities that stepped up to host the bid for the contract when BD_Collective’s tenure came towards its end. 

The other entity, BDCVS stepped back from the process in recognition that we’ve been closely involved in the BD_Collective and our deep connections with the council, as well as links with funders, make us best placed to lead the bid. 

We will continue to work closely with BDCVS so they can bring their many strengths to this contract. 

Nicki Lane will lead the work with support from Dr. Geraud de Ville de Goyet, PhD (CEO), who led community participation initiatives for several years at Barking and Dagenham Council before launching BD Giving, and Cameron Bray (Head of Learning and Participation). Cameron convenes local resident groups to make decisions about funding. They offer first-hand experience of poverty and marginalisation with a background in facilitation.

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