Partnerships and collaboration

Action on climate change

The mission of the VONNE Climate Action Alliance is to support the communities of the North East of England to confront the climate crisis using the hard lessons drawn from our past, the strengths of our community life in the present and the hard science that must inform our future, to guide and empower our actions. As part of this, in 2021, we launched Going Green Together, an online tool to help organisations take, and support one another on climate action.

The VONNE Climate Action Alliance is also a founding member of the North East England Climate Coalition, which is our region’s contribution to the urgent, radical and at scale response demanded by the global climate emergency, calling for net zero emissions which, if achieved, will mean that the birthplace of climate change – the North East of England – will be no longer contributing emissions, and can instead become a leader in our response to the climate emergency.

Digital support

Working with leaders in their field, we're delivering a programme to the North East voluntary, community and social enterprise sector that supports digital adoption. Digital Pathfinders is a fully-funded programme of support, including independent one-to-one bespoke guidance, which helps charities, social enterprises and small businesses across Newcastle, North Tyneside and Northumberland to make better decisions about digital.

Tailored to your organisational challenges, whether you have limited resources, are confused by the jargon around digital technology, or simply don't know where to start with adopting digital, this programme has been made possible by funding from the North of Tyne Combined Authority and Digital Catapult.

Health and Wellbeing

We represent the VCSE sector as a strategic partner in health and care system-wide workstreams that form part of the North East and North Cumbria Integrated Care System (ICS), the country's largest ICS which serves around three million people.

ICS’s bring together NHS providers, commissioners and local authorities to work in partnership with the VCSE sector in planning and commissioning health and care services at a strategic level. VONNE leads on VCSE sector representation within the North East and North Cumbria (NENC) ICS, via the VCSE Partnership Programme, working with Cumbria CVS.

This consists of a Health and Wellbeing Network that is open to all, a Partnership Forum for strategic health and wellbeing VCSE leads, and topical sub-groups that work alongside ICS workstreams. The VCSE Partnership Programme enables VCSE organisations to engage and collaborate with health and care system structures at all levels, and provides one point of contact for the ICS to engage with our sector.

Social Prescribing

With NHS England and other stakeholders we have established a North East Social Prescribing Network Steering Group and host the Regional Social Prescribing Facilitator. Working together to enable social prescribing to become part of the routine accessible, sustainable health offer across the region, we are ensuring we support and build on existing voluntary and community sector infrastructure and asset based approaches.

Find out more about Mainstreaming of Social Prescribing in the NHS: opportunity or challenge for the sector.

To join this Network, receive invitations to events, and access the online learning platform please contact

VONNE is also the North East and Yorkshire regional lead for the National Academy for Social Prescribing (NASP) Thriving Communities programme. Through this programme, and alongside our regional VCSE infrastructure partners across Yorkshire and Humber, and North Cumbria, we’re supporting some fantastic Thriving Communities funded projects and helping organisations interested or already involved in delivering social prescribing activities learn more and make valuable connections through our regional Social Prescribing Network. You can join this Network by emailing:

Innovation support

VONNE is part-funded by the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) as part of the £1.28m Catalysing Innovation in North East Clusters 2021-2023 project, delivered by the Innovation SuperNetwork as part of the European Structural and Investment Funds Growth Programme 2014-2020.

Through partnerships and workshops, we’re supporting VCSE organisations to innovate.


We convene networks to encourage collaboration and shared learning across the sector, including the Membership+ supporter Chief Executive Network, the North East Funders Network, Local Infrastructure Organisations' Networks and the Going Green Together peer support network.

North of Tyne VCSE Engagement Group

VONNE, along with local infrastructure colleagues in the North of Tyne region, sits on the North of Tyne VCSE Stakeholder Group, working to build capacity, sustainability and be a catalyst for an inclusive economy.

Safer Culture North East

We're working in partnership with local infrastructure organisations to highlight the importance of safeguarding, highlight best practice, and run awareness raising and training sessions.

North East Local Enterprise Partnership

VONNE'S CEO Carol Botten sits on the board of the North East Local Enterprise Partnership (NELEP), playing an active role in the delivery of the North East Strategic Economic Plan, as well as ensuring the views of the regional VCSE sector are well represented.

Criminal Justice

Through our partnership with Clinks we provide support to voluntary organisations working in the Criminal Justice System. Specifically, coordinating the Making Every Adult Matter (MEAM) work.

Tees Valley Combined Authority

We facilitate the Tees Valley Partnership with colleagues in local infrastructure organisations, providing a space and framework for engagement with stakeholders including the Tees Valley Combined Authority.

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