This presentation was based on findings from the study called Changing Landscapes for the Third Sector. The project brought together a wide network of studies that used qualitative longitudinal methods to research the changing fortunes and experiences of Third Sector organisations, and the people who are involved in them, over time. We brought the findings and data together from these projects in a number of ways and this presentation focuses on findings from the Synthesis, conducted by Dr Rob Macmillan (TSRC, University of Birmingham) and the Secondary Analysis, conducted by Dr Angela Ellis Paine (TSRC, University of Birmingham), and Veronique Jochum (National Council of Voluntary Organisations.
After a brief outline of the methods used in Changing Landscapes, these findings were bought together to consider how third sector organisations have adapted and developed in response to a rapidly changing economic context in a broader context of diminishing resources and an intensification of hardship and an individualisation of benefits for those who access third sector services. In this context of increasing demand at a time of depleted resources, the presentation explored how volunteering has become an increasingly important resource for both organisations and service users. However, pathways through volunteering for the volunteers themselves have been, to date, poorly understood. The presentation will outline the key findings on these pathways from our secondary analysis that may be of most benefit and utility to the third sector as they face continuing challenges.