Community Action Suffolk has appointed three new heads of service, as part of its dynamic strategy toward continued support of the voluntary sector in the region.
Frances Bedding joins as Head of Partnerships and External Relationships; Laura Butters becomes Head of VCSE Organisation Development, and Sally Connick moves from her previous role at Community Action Suffolk to take the post of Head of Community and Voluntary Action.
All three bring expertise across a variety of volunteer-led projects or funding initiatives and have extensive knowledge of the county’s community-focused infrastructure.
Frances has 30 years’ experience gained in the public and local authority sector, having led on external funding in Suffolk County Council.
Her new role will see her developing relationships with key funders and stakeholders, both locally and nationally.
She will also be responsible for the Lottery-funded Minding The Gap programme, aimed at 15 to 25-year-olds who are not accessing education, training or employment.
Frances said: “I’m looking forward to helping to bring together the sector to raise awareness and understanding of the fantastic work that we all do for the communities of Suffolk.”
Laura has worked for more than two decades with Suffolk County Council, with a primary focus on Early Years and Childcare.
Her strategic role will see her developing ways in which the sector can become more financially resilient in Suffolk, and in which organisations can keep pace with the service offering from within the private sector.
Laura, who is also a Parish Councillor and a Director of a local charity, said: “I am excited to have joined a progressive infrastructure organisation. I am looking forward to working with the great team here, developing our support to enable the VCSE sector to strengthen its financial resilience and to become more enterprising in the process.”
Sally has previously been known to many as the Good Neighbour Scheme Development Officer for Community Action Suffolk, enabling and supporting communities, and partnering with the Rural Coffee Caravan to develop their network of Meet Up Mondays.
In her new role, Sally will lead on the creation of impactful community projects, whilst connecting organisations and raising the profile of volunteering scope within the region.
She said: “Suffolk is a great example of how volunteering plays a vital role in our communities and that determined citizens can make a huge positive impact in their neighbourhoods.
“I’m excited to be leading a team that will help and develop more of this passion for community and voluntary action in Suffolk.”
Community Action Suffolk announced its new CEO, Chris Abraham, in April this year.
The organisation supports hundreds of charities, causes, social enterprises and community projects throughout Suffolk, by providing resources, training, business connections, and funding guidance.
Speaking about the appointment of the trio, Chris said: “In a period of great reliance upon the county’s charities and community-based initiatives, we at Community Action Suffolk are very focused on needing to support the sector to be the solution which individuals and families across our region need.
“The three heads of service bring invaluable experience and strategic insight which will support organisations in becoming more resilient and successful, and help communities benefit from activities and projects which allow them to thrive.”