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Views on communities and more from our team and national thought leaders.

Powering up Britain

Powering up Britain

Last week Labour announced their answer to the levelling up agenda. What role can community business play in powering up Britain?
Scaling community energy: four key lessons

Scaling community energy: four key lessons

We have been testing models for community energy that will play an important role in a fair, clean energy transition. Our learning can inform the Labour Party’s plans to grow the sector, putting communities and people at the heart of net zero.
How we are tackling DEI, using Data and Discovery

How we are tackling DEI, using Data and Discovery

Power to Change has been on a journey with DEI, researching barriers to funding, recognising our role in contributing to exclusionary practices, and working out how we can start to tackle it. This is an open and detailed account of that journey and how we achieved the most diverse applicant and grantee pool for our most recent fund.
CATALYSING THE COMMUNITY ENERGY SECTOR

CATALYSING THE COMMUNITY ENERGY SECTOR

As five community businesses launch a groundbreaking community energy collective, seeking to raise £2.5m to take ownership of seven solar farms, our climate action manager explores why Power to Change backed this initiative and what we hope our investment will achieve
Sharing our impact

Sharing our impact

Whilst our role is to build the evidence base about the impact of community business on places and planet, it's crucial we measure our own impact and explore the impact we can have on community businesses
What makes a community thrive? Our visit to Witton Lodge

What makes a community thrive? Our visit to Witton Lodge

We know community business works to breathe new life into communities. With this insight, our mission is to help create the right conditions for them to thrive. And so it always inspiring when we spend time with the community businesses we seek to support. Get closer to their stories, their impacts and their incredible people who drive change from the ground up.
How can we encourage a more equitable community business sector?

How can we encourage a more equitable community business sector?

We are exploring a number of ways in which we can better reach and serve community businesses. From our research, it is clear that our sector is still failing to serve marginalised communities and that for too long, decision-making power has been withheld by funders and change is inevitably slow, inadequate or both.
Driving Hendon’s high street revolution

Driving Hendon’s high street revolution

High street regeneration is a complex picture, but Back on the Map in Sunderland are piloting a Community Improvement District - convening a broad and inclusive local partnership to ensure regeneration efforts succeed. 
A community response to global issues

A community response to global issues

We are deeply concerned about the impact of the cost of living and energy crises on community businesses and the vital services they provide to their communities. As communities respond to these crises, we are here to support them.
Accelerating the Social Economy in the North East

Accelerating the Social Economy in the North East

North of Tyne Combined Authority and Power to Change are working together to invest in and grow the region’s social economy, responding directly to the sector’s evidenced needs for finance and support. But what could this support look like?
Conservative Conference: A divided party and a new direction for levelling up

Conservative Conference: A divided party and a new direction for levelling up

This week’s Conservative Conference in Birmingham was full of drama. Amongst all that, conversations around the future of levelling up and tackling the decline of our high streets showed that supporting communities still remains top of many MPs' agendas. What remains to be seen is whether this view is held by those now at the top of the party.
Understanding community life at a hyperlocal level

Understanding community life at a hyperlocal level

Power to Change commissioned Kantar to conduct a ‘hyperlocal’ version of the Community Life Survey, focused on six places in England participating in the Empowering Places programme. This blog outlines some initial findings on the relative impact of our work in each area.
The power of in-person events

The power of in-person events

Bethan Hunt reflects on the 2021 Bradford Learning Camp of the Empowering Places Programme and the power of meeting in-person in light of the Covid-19 pandemic.
Celebrating community businesses

Celebrating community businesses

There are some benefits of online events. In December, together with SSE, we brought together 54 community business leaders from across England to celebrate completing our Community Business Trade Up programme.
A new era for place-based funding?

A new era for place-based funding?

Rachel Laurence reflects on how one organisation, BD Giving, navigated the early stages of the Covid-19 pandemic and what this tells us about the future of place-based funding.
Real Ideas: From green shoots to mighty oaks

Real Ideas: From green shoots to mighty oaks

Real Ideas are a pioneering social enterprise supporting people to build better futures. In this blog, Ed Whitelaw reflects on the role of community business in parks and the importance of community climate heroes.
Ten things we’ve learnt about volunteering

Ten things we’ve learnt about volunteering

Power to Change recently commissioned a study on the value that volunteers contributed to community businesses. In this blog, Sarah Thelwall describes some of the findings that might be useful for community businesses.
How to make places even stickier

How to make places even stickier

With the launch of two reports calling on government to put communities in the lead and invest in social infrastructure in order to achieve levelling up, Ailbhe McNabola reflects on the findings and what needs to happen next.
Building financial capabilities

Building financial capabilities

We are seeking proposals from organisations with great ideas that will help to transform the sector, making it more resilient and sustainable for the long term.
Community tech in action

Community tech in action

This blog post is the third of three outlining the research that Promising Trouble has undertaken for Power to Change, answering the question, “How can Power to Change inspire greater uptake of community tech?”
What is community hardware and software?

What is community hardware and software?

This blog post is the second of three outlining the research that Promising Trouble has undertaken for Power to Change, answering the question, “How can Power to Change inspire greater uptake of community tech?”
A new era for community research

A new era for community research

Six years of cutting-edge research into the community business sector, from Power to Change, will now be hosted by our partners, the Institute for Community Studies.
What is community energy?

What is community energy?

We are right in the middle of Community Energy Fortnight, with over 400 organisations across the country hosting events, launching Twitter takeovers and writing blogs to celebrate all things community energy.
Support communities to save their local pub

Support communities to save their local pub

From next week pubs will literally open their doors once more as we’ll finally be allowed back inside in groups of six or fewer. Many of us are now used to booking weeks in advance to huddle under a heater, but the next stage of the roadmap will allow even more of our much-missed pubs to reopen.
Powering up community businesses!

Powering up community businesses!

Last year, Power to Change launched the Community Business Renewal Initiative to support the community business sector through Covid-19. As the Powering Up programme re-opens for applications, we take a look at how it works and what's in it for community businesses.
The Better Way Network

The Better Way Network

The Better Way Network is a network of leaders who want to improve services and build strong communities. Here, Laura Seebohm, the Better Way convenor in the North, explores the work they do.
New community energy peer mentoring programme

New community energy peer mentoring programme

Could you support the next generation of community energy organisations by sharing your knowledge and experience? We are looking for passionate and enthusiastic community energy organisations to participate in a peer mentoring scheme.
How 2020 put our name to the test

How 2020 put our name to the test

In this blog series, we’re looking back at this difficult, unforgettable year and the many ways Power to Change had to adapt to support the community business sector during the pandemic.  
The power of the crowd!

The power of the crowd!

Power to Change has launched two new matched funding programmes as part of the Community Business Renewal Fund. So how are they different?
The new civic high street

The new civic high street

The New Civic High Street was the culmination of a series of webinars run by Power to Change, looking at how our rapidly transforming town centres provide opportunities for radical thinking.

Who controls the high street?

The second of the Power to Change High Streets webinar series on 14th October investigated the issue of landownership as one of the principal levers of control for our town centres.
Choose Communities: Buy Social

Choose Communities: Buy Social

Choose Communities: Buy Social will be taking place from 15-17 October and is a chance to raise the profile of the social enterprise movement and the different way of doing business
New support available for community businesses

New support available for community businesses

With our partners, we have launched a support package for community businesses including a range of activities, from webinars to short intensive programmes for community business leaders to hone their skills and develop peer networks, helping them to continue to play a vital role in their communities
#CheersTo the community pub!

#CheersTo the community pub!

From Monday 21st October – Friday 1st November, Power to Change will be hosting a community pub crawl #CheersTo on our social media, celebrating the diverse range of activities that take place in community pubs.
Community-led markets can make community-led high streets

Community-led markets can make community-led high streets

As high streets continue to struggle, we need to look at alternative ways to ensure they return to being the thriving hubs of local life. Power To Change's Director of Communications and Partnerships, Mark Gordon, shares thoughts on his recent visit to Levenshulme and how community-led markets could provide a solution.
Power up North West

Power up North West

Guest blogger Nina Edge, an artist and campaigner from Liverpool 8 reflects on the Power to Change grantee support event in Liverpool on 5th March 2019 where the theme was Health and Wellbeing.
Join the social radicals in Bradford

Join the social radicals in Bradford

Bradford and Power to Change are celebrating their first TEDx together this week on 16th of January. Social innovation is the topic of a day long symposium taking place at the Nation and Science and Media museum there to share ideas from Bradford’s most innovative organisations and individuals.