The Demise of Caribbean voluntary and community groups
Equinox Consulting have been commissioned by BTEG, the Black Training and Enterprise Group, to undertake research into the state of Caribbean community and voluntary organisations. Anecdotal evidence indicates that the Caribbean voluntary sector (VCS) is in decline and we wish to find out if this is the case.
The Caribbean community is a long established ethnic group in England and the case of Caribbean-led organisations is of particular importance because these organisations have been a vibrant part of the voluntary and community sector in England for the past 50 years, providing useful services to their own communities and a supportive environment for settlement and socialisation in this country.
In the past ten years despite increased Central Government support in the form futurebuilders, ChangeUp and Capacitybuilders initiatives to strengthen voluntary and community sector organisations involved in direct delivery of public services at local level, black and minority ethnic voluntary groups seem to have been bypassed by these developments and opportunities.
BTEG’s anecdotal evidence suggests that fewer Caribbean organisations are taking up capacity building opportunities and even fewer are successful in obtaining funding from statutory and non-statutory funding bodies.
Jeremy Crook of BTEG said; “I’m concerned that this sector is in decline as this has serious implications for black Caribbean communities and their capacity to provide services since this community has some of the greatest needs. For example organisations are needed that can assist with training and educational support, enterprise and employment and health and social care issues. Our evidence suggests that local groups that are best placed to deal with these issues are starved of funding. This research is necessary in order to identify baseline information about the Caribbean sector so that we can debate its future and viability”.