Support, Development and Volunteering Outreach Worker

The Support, Development and Volunteering Workers role is to contribute to the support, development and volunteering services which are central to the work of Community Action: MK. The post holder will work as part of a team who are dedicated to delivering excellent infrastructure services to groups in Milton Keynes. The hours of work are 29.6 hours per week on a permanent contract (Dependent on Funding)

The main duties are as follows –

  1. Undertaking a programme of outreach visits to frontline groups
  2. Ensuring that referrals to specialist support services e.g. funding advice, training etc are carried out in a timely and appropriate manner
  1. To keep accurate and effective records about dialogue with groups and feed this into our intelligence gathering systems to ensure we are able to spot themes and issues affecting the sector.
  1. Organising networking opportunities for frontline groups
  2. Coordinating formal and informal training programmes to develop and implement capacity building support and quality standards for the provision of support services
  1. Organising groups to participate in, and promotion of, the Governance Toolkit.

Specific duties and responsibilities:

  1. To raise awareness of Community Action: MK’s available support for the VCS in MK through: 
  • Visiting/ engaging with a target number of groups and collecting information on their composition, activities, strengths, weaknesses and support/development needs through our Healthcheck process.
  • To both offer to, and collect information from groups on a range of technical, developmental, management and structural matters with the aim of identifying their infrastructure support needs.
  • To actively work with members of VCS organisations to ensure messages from the sector are channeled into a strategic voice to influence decision making.
  • To be responsible for promoting a community development approach that empowers local groups to build their organisational skills.
  • To identify areas of developmental support needs common to organisations within a specific area, to identify methods for meeting those needs and to work with appropriate partners to deliver appropriate support.
  • To keep detailed records on all groups visited (this will include detailing every intervention with the group either by phone, in person or by electronic means) and entering these onto our Data Recording System to the agreed standards.
  1. To coordinate: Networking opportunities for frontline groups which are focussed on a range of appropriate topics and issues. Formal and informal training programmes to develop and implement quality standards for the provision of support services using our Code of Governance Self Assessment tool.
  • The provision of training programmes for frontline groups on appropriate topics
  • Effective dialogue collection from groups and contribute to the organisational intelligence collection.
  • A programme of Volunteer Drop-In sessions across a range of venues in Milton Keynes and liaise with partner organisations to develop and promote volunteering opportunities.
  • Funding Advice and other 1:1 sessions with groups who send enquiries to Community Action: MK.
  • To work in partnership with organisations which interact with local community groups and voluntary organisations to support the needs of groups.
  • Effective and sector relevant information being shared with groups through newsletters, website, and social media platforms.
  • Monitoring and evaluation systems as specified
  1. To be able to use Technology, in particular, Google systems, Social Media, Funding Central, and our Volunteering and Database system called Simply Connect.
  2. To work within Community Action: MK’s policies and practices paying due regard to Health and Safety Procedures and Equal Opportunities.
  3. Any other duties appropriate to the post.

The successful applicant will need an understanding and passion for Community Action MK’s Community Development principles and experience of partnership working and relationship building with key stakeholders, including local authority, academics, and other community sector workers and residents.

Closing Date for Applications is at 12:00pm on the 10th April 2019

Download the Full Job Description & Personal Specification below


SDV Outreach Worker Job Description Mar 2019 (1)

Development Officer Person Specification (1)

Application Form 03_19

Read our Equal Opportunities Statement.

Download our Equal Opportunities Form.

Please complete our application form and return it via post or email to by 10th April 2019 12.00pm


Blog Post Jobs in the VCS opportunities

Support and Development Service Manager

The Support and Development Service Manager’s role is to ensure that through our infrastructure services to groups in Milton Keynes we have a thriving, vibrant and sustainable Voluntary and Community Sector. The post holder is accountable for the design, development, implementation, and coordination of the Support and Development programme for groups working in the Voluntary and Community Sector in Milton Keynes.

Community Action: MK is looking to recruit a Support and Development Service Manager to work 29.6 hours per week on a permanent contract (Dependent on Funding) The main duties are as follows –
1) To design a programme to support groups based on research from our recent State of the Sector Survey, Coordinate the Support.
2) Development and Volunteering enquiries and ensure groups are being given the right support.
3) Support and deliver complex 1:1 visits
4) Work with the Business Development team to prepare funding bids for grants which support this work programme.
5) Monitoring and evaluating the programme, analysing trends and making service development recommendations.
6) Ensure we have a programme of Networking/Convened Events.
7) Prepare and Participate in budget management.
8) prepare internal and external reports and attend meeting required
9) prepare the State of the sector Report.
10) Support a Representation process for Sector Involvement in Strategic Decision Making.
11) Develop a Training Programme for Groups to build their capacity.
12)Line Management of designated individuals.
13) Work Closely with other senior colleges to ensure Support and Development services are working to compliment volunteering development and opportunities for synergy across the organisation.
14) Work Closely with other key stakeholders and agencies to ensure groups are given the best available support to meet their needs and access grant funding or other income streams.

Successful applicants will need an understanding and passion for Community Action MK’s Community Development principles and experience of partnership working and relationship building with key stakeholders, including the local authority, academics, and other community sector workers and residents.

Closing Date for Applications is at 12:00pm on the 10th April 2019

Download the Full Job Description & Personal Specification below

Support and Development Service Manager (4)

Service Manager Person Specification (2)

ApplicationForm 03_19

Read our Equal Opportunities Statement.

Download our Equal Opportunities Form.

Please complete our application form and return it via post or email to by 10th April 2019 12.00pm

Blog Post Jobs in the VCS opportunities

Jobs in the Voluntary Sector: Finance Officer for Advantage Africa

Advantage Africa: Finance Officer

Olney-based charity Advantage Africa is seeking an experienced bookkeeper or accountant who is keen to apply their skills to our life-changing work. This is a vital supporting role that enables Advantage Africa to deliver cost-effective development among some of East Africa’s most vulnerable people and meet its statutory requirements as a registered charity. The position is part-time requiring up to 20 hours per week spread over 3-4 days and will be located at the charity’s office in Olney.

The closing date is 12th March 2019, with interviews on 22nd March and employment commencing on 29th April. To find out more and download a job pack please visit

Blog Post

Jobs in the Voluntary Sector: MK Play Association Scrapstore Retail Lead

Scrapstore Retail Lead

We are looking for a passionate, enthusiastic and energetic individual able to work under their own initiative to take responsibility for our retail operation, the Resource Unit and Scrapstore, with the opportunity to grow and develop it.

Milton Keynes Play Association is one of the oldest charities in Milton Keynes having started in 1971. There are three core services that we offer; play, training, and the provision of resources. These three together allow MKPA to encourage the development of individuals and organisations through play in the local community. We also offer a wide range of activities and courses as well as stage fun and exciting events across the region.

Job Title: Scrapstore Retail Lead

Hours of work: 37.5 per week

Location: Milton Keynes and surrounding areas

Duties and Key Responsibilities:

  • Co-ordinate resource unit and staff on a day to day basis, ensuring the effective operation of the Scrapstore and Resource Unit as set out in our policies and procedures.
  • Responsible for stock ordering and supplier negotiation.
  • Actively develop new sources of materials to be donated.
  • Report to Board on progress at regular intervals.
  • General digital marketing duties to promote the Resource Unit and Scrapstore.

Qualifications and Experience:

Ideally you will have the following qualifications, training and experience:

  • First class communicator at all levels.
  • Recent retail experience, at supervisory/management level desirable.
  • Be able to fulfil the role including all of its physical requirements (this will be a very hands on role).
  • Be confident in using IT packages – Word, Excel, Sage
  • Relationship management, forming and maintaining links with the customers, business community and donors.
  • To identify and remain focused on priorities.
  • Experience using results of data analysis to implement improvements to the retail operation.
  • Understand the ethos behind reusing/repurposing scrap materials as well as how it can be used for play (desirable).
  • Full UK driving license.
  • Forklift License (desirable, training will be given)


  • Attractive remuneration package.
  • Encouragement and support for training and personal development.
  • A pivotal role in a great team that makes a difference to children, families and the wider community.

Salary indicator:

£11 per hour.

We are committed to safeguarding the welfare of children and young people we serve.  As such, this post is subject to necessary safeguarding checks including an Enhanced DBS.

MKPA is an Equal Opportunity Employer. MKPA does not discriminate on the basis of race, religion, colour, sex, gender identity, sexual orientation, age, non-disqualifying physical or mental disability or any other basis covered by appropriate law. All employment is decided on the basis of qualifications, merit, and business need.

We look forward to receiving your application!

To apply please send a CV and covering letter

Closing date for applications: Friday 1st March 2019

Interviews to be held: Wednesday 6th March  2019

Blog Post

What does Good Governance look like? York House Case Study


Good Governance Case Study

York House Community Centre


York House Centre is an established and well used Youth, Community and Arts Centre in Stony Stratford.

It is both a charity and a charitable company limited by guarantee and is governed by a board of eight trustees, supported by 4 part time members of staff.

The board has a healthy gender and age balance but currently has no representation from the BAME community. Many of the trustees are long serving and almost all of them are semi-retired or retired. Each trustee has a ‘portfolio’ area of work that they are responsible for including marketing, staffing, infrastructure and IT.

York House Centre were fortunate to be approached by local company, Mercedes-Benz Financial Services, who wanted to support a local community organisation as part of their Corporate Social Responsibility, whilst gaining development for their staff. It was the professional business-like and openness of the running of the centre, plus the centre’s relationship with other organisations in the town, which attracted MBFS to invest a huge amount of time and effort. The collaboration has resulted in a number of physical improvements to the building, and enabled professional review of documents and policies, marketing support and preparation of a new long term business plan.

We spoke to Ken Daniels, Chair of the trustees of York House to get his top tips for improving governance:

  • Consider having defined roles for each trustee, ideally in an area they have experience or professional expertise in
  • Develop leadership by focusing on strategic decision making. Trustees are often busy people so will appreciate smooth systems for information sharing and decision making
  • Ensure you have a skilled treasurer who can work with any staff to oversee financial management and  prepare accounts
  • Create transparency through regular communication with members, users and supporters
  • Keep meetings short by ensuring proposals are circulated well in advance and everyone knows what options for decision making are being proposed
  • Consider trying to break down the perception that being a trustee is time consuming and that you need knowledge and experience. This should help with recruitment
  • Bear in mind the importance of succession planning so that knowledge and experience can be passed on and not lost
  • Provide formal or in-house training

The board find it essential to regularly assess their vulnerabilities in order to inform their planning. Their current assessment looks like this:

  • Competition from other organisations, both commercial and charitable.
  • Changes in demographics and economic climate, affecting usage,
  • recruitment of volunteers.
  • Changes in economic climate affecting availability of grants and other
  • sources of income.
  • Demographics affecting, for example, BAME volunteers and trustees.
  • Difficulties in recruiting younger (ie under 50s) trustees and volunteers,
  • thereby threatening succession planning.
  • Perceptions about what is involved in being a trustee or volunteer,
  • including knowledge, experience and time.
  • In the case of York House Centre, the age and condition of the Grade II
  • listed building.

We know that it can be a huge job keeping up with all the latest best practice around regulation and compliance so thanks to funding from MK Community Foundation, Community Action: MK have developed a self assessment tool based on the Charity Code of Governance that you can use whether you are a charity or community group, large or small or anything in between.

The tool is a relatively quick and easy online form for your board or committee to assess how you are performing in regards to the seven key principles of Good Governance. After completing the form, Community Action: MK will tailor advice and resources for you to use to improve your score.

We are also able to promote your trustee and committee member roles via our volunteering platform. If you require more substantial support, we are happy to talk to you about a bespoke package of support. Please email us.

Blog Post

Volunteering Opportunity of the Week: ‘Planting Up’ Community Garden


The Planting Up project is building a community garden at Westbury Arts Centre (in Shenley Wood) to give MK residents a safe, welcoming and educational place for people to enjoy being outside together, “muck in” with some organic “no-dig” gardening methods and to connect with Art, Nature, Food and each other.

In the long term, we expect local families, schools and groups to visit the house and gardens and join our project to learn more about growing your own food, about permaculture and recycling, to help us create wildlife habitats that encourage biodiversity in the garden, and for us all to benefit from the organic produce we grow.

Our focus on permaculture means that we will be recycling, reusing materials, and keeping to local resources – helping to save money, protect the environment and help to reduce our carbon footprint.

There are two areas that we need volunteer help with:

1) Gardening to help maintain the gardens
2) With admin and marketing to help promote the project in MK

Read more and apply here.

Blog Post