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The Project

The project explores voluntary action responses to the pandemic across the four UK nations. Click to find out more about the research.

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The Resources page will be regularly updated with links to policy documents that have been analysed as part of the project, alongside outputs produced by the project team.

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The Team

Our collaborative research project is co-produced by a UK-wide team of academics and practitioners. Click to read more about our project team.

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Stay up to date with key developments in the research project on the News tab.

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Research project funded by the Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC), as part of UK Research and Innovation’s rapid response to Covid-19.



The project has been co-designed and is being co-delivered practicing the principles of co-production. This approach recognises the value of all knowledge and promotes joint ownership within and across the four nations.



The overarching aim of this four nation comparative study is to critically evaluate voluntary action responses to the pandemic to help guide the UK volunteer effort to support the national recovery and preparedness for future crises.



The four nation study is being delivered by a UK-wide team of academics and the four key infrastructure bodies for each nation. The core team are supported by a Project Partner advisory panel (from professional networks, organisations and related ESRC investments).



The project has four core data collection activities to gain a broad understanding of how voluntary action has been mobilised during the pandemic. These include 1) policy document analysis, 2) interviews, 3) analysis of volunteer management app data 4) a UK-wide call for evidence.

Meet Our Teams

Joanna Stuart, NCVO

“This research will provide much needed insights into how we can sustain the volunteering efforts that we’ve seen through the pandemic and better remove barriers that stop people volunteering in the future.”Joanna Stuart, NCVO Research Associate

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Sally Rees

"This research provides a unique opportunity to understand how voluntary action continues to be an important part of supporting people in the community during the Covid-19 pandemic, and the importance of future-proofing voluntary action across Wales and the UK to support people’s well-being outcomes."Sally Rees, National Third Sector Health and Social Care Facilitator

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Matthew Linning

"It’s great to be part of this UK-wide research as it focuses on sharing lessons on what really matters: our preparedness for COVID-19; the voluntary sector’s response; and how volunteering can help address the really serious social challenges we face during recovery and beyond".Matthew Linning, Strategic Performance Manager, Volunteer Scotland

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Denise Hayward

"Volunteer Now is delighted to be involved in this research as it will give us a chance to reflect on the impact that Covid-19 has had on volunteering and how the differences in public policy across the four nations have influenced this.”Denise Hayward, Chief Executive Officer- Volunteer Now

Meet The Team

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Join Our Events

We are organising a number of free virtual events over the course of the project. These will provide an opportunity to learn more about our research findings.

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Our Partners

The research is being conducted by a UK-wide team of practitioners and academics.