Stronger Together - Conference Papers

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Thank you to everyone who attended the ‘Stronger Together’ VCSE Conference on the 7th July. Feedback has proved to be highly positive, with 98% of delegates saying they would attend a similar event and 94% rating the day as good or excellent. A summary of feedback is provided below together with the presentations from speakers, where available, for each session.

Click here for feedback summary


Keynote presentation: Dr Wendy Thomson CBE, Managing Director, Norfolk County Council 

Workshop Session 1
Funding with Ambition

This session covered a mix of strategic and practical considerations around funding: developing a fundraising strategy, different funding sources and some do’s and don’ts for bids and applications. The workshop was delivered by Julia Hargreaves, an experienced fundraising manager with leading youth charity Ambition.

Re-imagining Services

How can we get the best outcomes for people in a reduced funding environment? How can we promote stronger integration and a focus on prevention? How can we better align services and investment across organisations and sector to achieve better outcomes? This engagement session with Norfolk County Council will focus on key questions for the coming years.

The written up version of the raw notes from the discussion part of this session can be accessed by clicking here

Marketing and Social Media Masterclass

Our panel of expert speakers will highlight best practice from among the VCSE sector in marketing, building up a brand, using social media and working with your local media.


  • Nick Applin and John Skinner, partners at ApplinSkinner
  • Chris Greenfield, director at Bright Yellow Marketing
  • Tim Williams, managing editor at Archant Norfolk

Workshop Session 2
Involving Young People

Ben Burt, activity manager at the OPEN Youth Trust, will talk about creative ways of involving young people in your work and/or activities. Come ready to get involved, be challenged and inspired!

The Fundraising Panel –  Thinking Beyond Bids 

Thinking about how to diversify your income streams? Want to do more with corporate partners but not sure how to go about it?  Hear from our panel about how they have transformed fundraising within their organisations.


  • Graeme Byrne, director of development at UEA
  • Daniel Williams, outgoing chief executive at Big C
  • Sophie Berry, funding and marketing manager at Nelson’s Journey
  • Martin Green, fundraising events manager at Break


Strengthening Volunteering in Norfolk

This session will explore some of the drivers among volunteering and how organisations can ensure they are accessible to a wide range of volunteers.


  • Alan Hopley, chief executive at Voluntary Norfolk (chair)
  • Andrew Morter, volunteering manager at Voluntary Norfolk
  • Sophie Cabot, volunteering administrator at UEA’s careers service
  • Vicki Howling, project coordinator at Volunteering Matters​

Adult Safeguarding is Everybody’s Business

Do you work with adults who may be at risk of abuse or neglect? Would you feel confident knowing when and how to report a concern?   This workshop with Norfolk County Council’s adult safeguarding team will guide you through the process and some of the key issues to be aware of.


  • James Kearns, chief executive at the BUILD Charity (chair)
  • Norfolk adult safeguarding team
  • Eddie West-Burnham, chief executive at West Norfolk Mind

Workshop Session 3
Fundraising Tools and Tips

Confused about crowdfunding? Unsure about community shares? This workshop will offer delegates the chance to quiz our speakers on some of the many fundraising tools out there, including online donations, Gift Aid and community shares. 


  • John McGourty and Abbie Panks, Shouldham Community Enterprises
  • Sam Baldwin, account manager at Virgin Money Giving
  • Mark Proctor, partner at Lovewell Blake LLP

Ask the Commissioners

Through exploring the experiences of commissioners and commissioned organisations, this session will offer attendees from the VCSE and public sectors the chance to learn from past experiences. 


  • Heather Farley, consultant at Community Action Norfolk (chair)
  • Robert Cooper, head of integrated commissioning (South), health and social care
  • Pip Coker, chief executive at Julian Support
  • Chris Butwright, head of joint commissioning for children’s services

Summit Session 

The background paper and nominees to the Systems Leadership Group can be found here. We are pleased to announce the five elected positions were filled by: 

  • Pip Coker
  • Richard Draper
  • Janka Rodziewicz
  • ​Daniel Williams
  • Jane Evans