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ACTion with Communities in Cumbria is the community development organisation and Rural Community Council for Cumbria with over 65 years of experience assisting communities to achieve their aspirations.

ACT champions community and rural issues, we support communities to plan for their future, develop projects, work with others, and influence and change policy. We are particularly active in rural areas among communities affected by disadvantage whether this is economic, social or physical. We provide practical advice and support, deliver training, and offer independent facilitation.


Read our 2014-2015 Annual Report or visit the What We Do page to find out more about current and previous ACT projects including our work with Community Buildings and Community Led Planning groups. Over the years we have produced a wide variety of guidance resources and materials to support a range of community activity: guidance sheets, case studies, workbooks, toolkits, and the ACT Gazette newsletter are all available via Resources and Publications.

You can Join us by becoming an ACT Member or ACT Supporter (it’s free!) and follow us on Twitter @ACTCumbria. Visit the Staff and Trustees pages for profiles of our staff, trustees, president, vice president and patron.

Through a variety of partnerships ACT is able to represent the interests of communities, acting as a bridge between local people and the agencies and authorities that impact on their daily lives. ACT helps to raise awareness of local needs and to improve the relevance and responsiveness of services. Cumbria Rural Forum, facilitated by ACT, is an example of this, providing individuals and agencies with a place to come together and discuss issues of concern to rural life.  ACT uses evidence gathered through its community development activities to influence policy and decision making, locally and nationally. Key sources of evidence and information include: primary research projects; local priorities identified in Community Led Plans; and Evidencing Rural Need data. More information about ACT’s research projects, and other sources of information can be found in Research and Other Publications.

ACT also has many years experience supporting businesses in Cumbria. We currently support the Rural Women’s Network and deliver Social Enterprise Start Up Support.

ACT's work is underpinned by a core set of values: Excellence and Professionalism, Impartiality and Integrity, Community Action and Inclusivity, and Environmental Responsibility. In support of these values, ACT provides a supportive working environment for its staff and the communities it works with, backed up by accredited quality standards recognising excellent working practice: ISO 9001 and ACRE Level 3. ACT has also been awarded the CBEN Gold Award in recognition of our commitment to environmental responsibility.

ACT was established as a community development organisation owned by the people of Cumbria in 1948, find out more in ACT History. ACT is one of thirty eight members of the national ACRE network (Action with Communities in Rural England). To find out more about ACRE, visit www.acre.org.uk.

ACT is a community development organisation, using the following definition: 'Good community development is action that helps people to recognise and develop their ability and potential and organise themselves to respond to problems and needs which they share. Good community development supports the establishment of strong communities that control and use assets to help improve the quality of community life. It also enables community and public agencies to work together to improve the quality of government.'

Image  showing act activities

Latest news

Future support for community-led housing solutions

29 July 2016

Future support for community-led housing solutions

Across the country celebrations have been taking place as part of Rural Housing Week, to celebrate and promote community solutions to housing issues. ACTion with Communities in Cumbria (ACT) is taking this opportunity to promote the development of a new service to support communities in the future.

 

Support on hand for volunteers running Cumbria's village halls

29 July 2016

Support on hand for volunteers running Cumbria's village halls

ACTion with Communities in Cumbria (ACT) has supported village halls for over 60 years with specialist advice and information and has now secured funding to provide help for hall volunteers until 2017.

Beck Community Centre receives quality award for good management

27 June 2016

Beck Community Centre receives quality award for good management

Committee members from Kendal’s Beck Community Centre were presented with their Hallmark One Quality Standard certificate at a recent village hall event run by ACTion with Communities in Cumbria (ACT).

The national Hallmark Quality Standards Scheme recognises good management and practice by village and community hall management committees, and can be used to demonstrate halls are run efficiently and are a real asset to their communities.

Coastal communities in North Copeland – have your say

1 December 2015

Coastal communities in North Copeland – have your say

Communities and business along the north Copeland coast from Distington to St Bees are being encouraged to have a say in an online survey on how to invest funding to support the coastal economy.

ACTion with communities in Cumbria and Kolek Consulting are assisting the North Copeland Coastal Communities Team to develop an Economic Plan, to be used to apply for Big Lottery Coastal Community funding.

Cumbrian Charity at European Rural Parliament

17 November 2015

Cumbrian Charity at European Rural Parliament

Hellen Aitken from ACTion with Communities in Cumbria (ACT) was one of a delegation of five members of the ACRE (Action with Communities in Rural England) Network who attended the recent European Rural Parliament gathering in Schärding in Austria.

The delegation from England joined over 200 people representing 40 European countries to approve a European Rural Manifesto.

Brough Memorial Hall receives quality award for good management

17 November 2015

Brough Memorial Hall receives quality award for good management

Committee members from Brough Memorial Hall were presented with their Hallmark One Quality Standard certificate at a recent village hall event run by ACTion with Communities in Cumbria (ACT).

The national Hallmark Quality Standards Scheme recognises good management and practice by village hall management committees and can be used to demonstrate halls are run efficiently and are a real asset to their communities.

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13/07/2016 (UTC) Dublin, Edinburgh, Lisbon, London

Designing Good Questionnaires for Communities - 13 July 2016

A free workshop for community groups who need to write questionnaires or carry out surveys.
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