We are the umbrella body for local voluntary and community groups working in Southampton.
We provide a wide range of services including specialist support, advice and training to our membership. We also provide and promote information to individuals and organisations on volunteering in the city.
Southampton Voluntary Services (SVS) is housed in the voluntary action centre, which is a purpose built resource for the voluntary sector in Southampton.
Volunteering and involvement in voluntary action can be a powerful tool for personal and social change. It can help the volunteer to grow as much as the recipient of their volunteering - it reconnects people to the world of work or training, helps them retrain expertise or attain new skills, build confidence, purpose or self-worth. Through giving up their time people make new friends and inter-community connections and it can be a source of personal pride, self-achievement and social value.
All aspects of our work promote voluntary action; from recruiting volunteers and helping the wider voluntary sector to be well managed, effective and to have a voice, through to the projects we manage which give local people an opportunity to contribute and find solutions to local issues.
2018 marked our 50th anniversary of promoting voluntary services in the city! As an organisation we'll be spending the year not only reflecting on episodes of our golden past, but also looking forward at the role SVS will play in our sector now and into the future.
We are excited to announce that the SO:Linked service is now live, as of 1 October 2019.
We are looking forward to working with you all to forge and strengthen links between individuals and groups across the city. The new service has two aspects:
Community Navigation – This is about helping people across the city to link up with local services, activities, groups and other people to contribute to health and wellbeing. Community Navigators from the partner agencies will work with people, helping them identify their needs and hopes and enabling them to overcome obstacles.
Community Development – Community Development Officers will work with community, voluntary and social enterprise groups, as well as individuals who are looking into starting new initiatives, resourcing them and helping them to develop and thrive.
So, if you meet someone who would like to access services, try activities or join a group or you know a group that is interested in accessing support and resources from the team, please refer them or encourage them to self-refer.
Equally this is a brand-new service that is going to grow and develop in partnership with agencies and networks, organisations and individuals across the city. There will be lots of opportunities to get involved and participate in the shaping of the service, which we will advertise through SVS and partner agency networks. If you’d like to know more though, please let us know!
Meet the team
The SO:Linked service has been jointly commissioned by the CCG and Southampton Council. Southampton Voluntary Services is the lead organisation working in partnership with Alzheimer’s Society, Solent Mind, and Spectrum CIL on the Community Navigation side, and with Solent Enterprise Link and TWICS on the Community Development aspect.
Referral criteria and how to refer
The Community Navigation service is for any adult (18+) living in the Southampton City council area or registered with a Southampton City council GP surgery. Referrals are welcomed from GPs, adult services, health and social care professionals, voluntary, community and social enterprise organisations and self-referrals.
The referral form is attached here SOLinked referral for external partners and can also be accessed on the GP EMIS/System 1 and through the SO:Linked website. These need to be returned to firstname.lastname@example.org
The Community Development provision is for any formal or informal community group, new or existing. Referrals can be made by completing the same form and returning it to the email address as above.
People can also refer themselves at one of our outreach events across the city. Details of these can be found on the attached outreach schedule.
Link with us
We’d really like to link with you on social media!
Any comments, feedback or suggestions should be directed to the partner organisation in the first instance via their comments and complaints procedure. If this is not possible then please see the SVS feedback and complaints procedure.
Healthwatch Southampton is the new consumer champion for health and social care. We make sure your views & experiences are heard by those who run, plan and regulate health and social care services.
The Community Roots allotment scheme provides supported volunteering, training & work experience to those who have experienced homelessness, mental health, & alcohol or substance misuse.
Through Southamton Voluntary Services, the Shopmobility service provides manual and electric wheelchairs and mobility scooters to people with limited mobility enabling users to access the city centre.
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