Grants / Projects we are funding

Building Civil Society Capacity: New Economy Organisers Network

Grant details


Awarded on:01/11/2016


Area of interest

Systems change

The New Economy Organisers Network is training the next generation of leaders who will be at the forefront of creating a better connected, more strategic movement for a new economy.

What is the issue?

Progressives aren’t winning the battle for a fairer, more resilient and sustainable economy in the UK. Events like Brexit show us we need to build the capacity of key civil society organisations and movements to make our economy work for the most vulnerable.

Based on research NEON has done with the 900 organisations in our network, we’ve found two basic problems in civil society capacity. Firstly, there just isn’t enough support for leaders of key institutions to develop strategy. Whilst this kind of support exists for social enterprise in the UK (e.g. UnLtd) there is a scarcity of organisational development for UK civil society organisations working on systemic change. In the US there are dedicated groups like Rockwood or The Management Centre. We propose an Organisation Builders programme to fill the gap.

Secondly, in the UK we need to get better at developing and sustaining more effective campaigns and mass movements. These movements are needed to mobilise people around growing economic and social injustices, born out of the economic stagnation in many parts of the UK. In the US there are organisations like Ayni institute or Wildfire project that build the capacity of movements like #fightfor15. We therefore propose to build a dedicated Movement Builders programme here in the UK.

What will the project try to achieve?

By providing a rigorous programme of organisational coaching and movement building, NEON will help increase the impact and scale of civil society organisations who are leading change towards a new economy. Specifically these programmes aim to achieve:

Organisation Builders: To coach, support and develop up to 24 existing or new institutions needed to build economic justice and resilience in Britain.

Movement Builders: Train up to 300 movement builders, in different regions of the UK to learn the latest mobilization techniques from across the world so that we’re better able to organise around key strategic battles like housing, migration or local energy

Who might be interested in this project?

  • Potential participants: People building groups and organisations, for the Organisation Builders programme and people building movements for the Movement Builders programme.
  • Experts / faculty in movement building and organisation building: People with expertise who may wish to be donate some of their time pro-bono to the programme.
  • Connectors: People who may be able to connect us to great participants and / or experts around the UK (we don’t want this to be focused on London or the South East).
  • Other funders! The more funding we have, the more groups we can help. Suggestions for other funders would be very welcome.

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