CAG Devon Expansion Community Research
The results are in! In Spring 2023, Resource Futures undertook community research involving CAG Devon stakeholders – community groups, partners and funders. We’re delighted to share the findings of that work, which underpins CAG Devon’s next steps. With additional funding from Devon Climate Emergency and Devon County Council Public Health, CAG Devon can now extend its support across Devon, developing new partnerships and inviting grassroots sustainability groups to join our network.
Since CAG Devon was set up in 2016, we have been working hard to connect community members and create opportunities for environmental action. Starting in Tiverton, we were excited to expand support across Mid Devon, and then across Teignbridge two years later, and CAG Devon has continued to flourish ever since!
Earlier this year our partner organisation, Resource Futures, a BCorp accredited Sustainability Consultancy, undertook research to explore the possibility of both expanding the CAG Devon network countywide and welcoming a wider range of groups involved in sustainability initiatives including wildlife, energy and sustainable travel. The aim of this project was to ensure any network expansion opportunities would add real value to Devon, providing community support where it is needed and complementing rather than replicating or duplicating existing services and organisations.
This work engaged with a wide range of community groups, networks and organisations from across Devon. In total, 73 community groups completed a community support survey and 19 in-depth interviews were conducted with a range of key community stakeholders. Together this data provided insights into current experiences of delivering community work in Devon and provided an abundance of tailored insight on the challenges and opportunities for the region.
The research culminated in a report which can be found below. Some of the key findings are highlighted below:
- Key features welcomed by those in the CAG network include practical day-to-day support, good staffing levels, and regular information sharing.
- Groups are currently looking for assistance with volunteer recruitment and fundraising as they seek to boost internal capacity and are keen to find ways to reach new audiences and establish new activities.
- Whilst many groups felt connected to others doing similar work, the need for greater communication, networking and sharing of skills with other similar groups remained a strong theme in the research findings.
- Existing support services currently available across Devon do not duplicate the support provided by CAG Devon, and the network appears to meet a clear gap in local service provision.
- There are wide-ranging partnership opportunities for CAG Devon.
- There is strong local support for CAG Devon expansion.
The results of the research revealed an appetite for expanding the CAG Devon network and the opportunity to nurture collaborative partnerships with other fantastic organisations and networks.
We would like to thank all those involved who contributed to the project, shared their stories, and provided brilliant feedback.
We are delighted to say that CAG Devon is now able to offer support across Devon, thanks to additional funding secured in 2023/4 from Devon Climate Emergency and Devon County Council, Public Health. Our expanded team is already delivering events and developing partnerships across the county to add value to the work already happening on the ground and inviting grassroots sustainability groups to join us.
We are excited to see where the future holds for community action in Devon!
Download the report by clicking this link