Voluntary and community sector (VCS) organisations are also sometimes known as 'the third sector' or 'civil society organisations' and can vary significantly in size from small local groups, run exclusively by volunteers, to large national charities.
We recognise the valuable contribution the VCS make to local communities and are committed to supporting the voluntary and community sector in County Durham.
You can also find further information about the support available to community groups in your area through your local Area Action Partnership (AAP).
You can also search online for information on adult social care services, health groups and other community information on a countywide, regional and national basis through Locate - care and support in County Durham.
We have a number of opportunities for volunteering with the council that you can get involved in and which will help us enhance the wide range of services we provide to communities.
For more information about volunteering for all ages in County Durham contact Durham Community Action who provide a one stop shop for volunteering. You can also search Do-it, the national volunteering website.
We welcome bids for the provision of services from all sections of the community, including third sector organisations, and from organisations bidding in consortia.
We have developed the County Durham Market Position Statement (MPS) (see The local market for children's, adults, public health and housing services) which brings together key information about our priorities and upcoming opportunities for the market during 2015/16.
You can find out further information about Working with the council and how to do business with us.
We are committed to being open and transparent about how we work, how our decisions are made and what services we provide. As part of this commitment, we publish information about how we spend our money and buy our services including Grants to voluntary, community and social enterprises (VCSE).