Our annual 'Spirit of Manchester' programme is a celebration of the work of thousands of voluntary organisations, community groups, charities and social enterprises in Manchester. We believe it's important to recognise, support and encourage volunteers and local voluntary action. The programme evolves every year.
The highlight is undoubtedly the Spirit of Manchester Awards which are about celebrating and highlighting examples of the excellent work being carried out in Manchester’s voluntary, community and social enterprise (VCSE) sector. As well as providing recognition to the sector in hard times, Macc's aim in running this programme is to raise the profile of the sector amongst the general public and encourage local giving and active citizenship.
The awards were established in 2013 and are now run annually by Macc, working in partnership with other local organisations. The awards provide us with an opportunity to build the relationships between the local business and voluntary sectors – our supporters programme enables local businesses not only to be involved in celebrating the sector but also contributing to fundraising through donations and sponsorship.
Spirit of Manchester Stories
A series of week-long campaigns, the first of which was held in September 2016, to document the extraordinary everyday stories of our sector. VCSE organisations are asked to choose one day during the week of the campaign and record an activity which we captured via a short 10 minute phone interview on the day. We then publicise this information via our website and on social media using the hashtag #SpiritofMcrStory We run these several times during the year.
Spirit of Manchester Business
We believe there is an exciting opportunity to increase relationships between the private and voluntary sectors in Manchester. Our Spirit of Manchester Business initiative aims to bring businesses and local causes together for the good of Manchester. The scheme is based around exchanging skills and knowledge you already have for the benefit of the community.
Spirit of Manchester Fund
The purpose of the Fund is to provide mini-grants to local voluntary and community groups, social enterprises or registered charities to help deliver projects, events or community activities which will improve the wellbeing of people who live, work or study in Manchester.
Some years, when resources permit, we also run a Spirit of Manchester Festival in which we encourage all of Manchester’s VCSE organisations to get involved by holding an event(s) to showcase their organisation and raise awareness of their cause and attract new supporters. The Festival usually comprises around 70 activities across the city. Examples of previous festival events include art exhibitions, fun-days, coffee mornings, cycling sessions, bake-offs, dance classes to name a few. Macc acts as a light-touch curator for the Festival, encouraging groups to get involved, administering the calendar of events and helping promote the message of the amazing work being delivered by the sector to make a difference to life in Manchester.
Further information and details of this year's programme can be found at https://www.manchestercommunitycentral.org/spirit-of-manchester