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Live projects


Map of ER participants - June 2020

Covid-19 Response Work

Topline timings: March 2020- March 2021

Live project

Commissioned by:

IVAR-initiated, supported by Esmée Fairbairn Foundation, John Lyon’s Charity, Paul Hamlyn Foundation, Pears Foundation and The Tudor Trust

Are you a VCSE leader? We’re running 90 minute peer support sessions to share and explore the challenges you are currently facing.



Open OD | Inspiring radically better organisational development

In partnership with: SHIFT, NPC, and NCVO

Topline timings: July 2020 - March 2021

Methodology & process: Research

Live project

Open OD is an enquiry into what works and what needs to work better in the field of nonprofit sector organisational development. It is delivered by a partnership of charities: SHIFT, NPC, IVAR and NCVO, and funded by Lloyds Bank Foundation and The National Lottery Community Fund.

ESCC logo

Valuing the VCSE Sector in East Sussex

In partnership with: East Sussex County Council

Topline timings: May 2020- Jan 2021

Live project

East Sussex County Council has commissioned IVAR to carry out research on the voluntary, community and social enterprise (VCSE) sector’s social, economic and environmental value and impact across East Sussex.

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Small Voluntary Organisations’ adoption and use of tech: Phase Two

In partnership with: CAST (Centre for Acceleration of Social Technology)

Topline timings: September 2019- February 2021

Live project

Commissioned by:

Comic Relief, Esmee Fairbairn Foundation, Lloyds Bank Foundation for England and Wales, Paul Hamlyn Foundation, Tudor Trust

The purpose of a second phase of this research is to enhance and improve support and funding practices for the use of tech by small voluntary organisations (SVOs). In partnership with CAST, this follow-up piece of work will build on Start Somewhere. We are researching the key moments in the process of adoption and use of tech within SVOs.

Open and Trusting_Website badge

Sustaining simplified funding beyond the Covid-19 crisis

In partnership with: City Bridge Trust, Comic Relief, Community Foundation for Northern Ireland, Corra Foundation, Esmée Fairbairn Foundation, IVAR, London Funders, the Mercers’ Company as Corporate Trustee of the Mercers’ Charitable Foundation, The Tudor Trust and United St Saviour’s

Topline timings: Until March 2021

Methodology & process: Research

Live project

In partnership with London Funders, a group of eight foundations, and VCSE organisations from across the UK, IVAR is launching a Learning Review to identify opportunities for sustainable adaptations and innovations to funding processes and practices. We will be capturing and distilling the key features and aspects of funder responses to the Covid-19 crisis, before turning our attention to options for longer-term adaptations and innovations to funding behaviours and processes, and supporting funders with implementation - paying particular attention to the needs of VCSE organisations adversely affected by systemic barriers and burdensome practices.

Healthier Lancashire and South Cumbria

IVAR will work as a Learning Partner to the Lancashire and South Cumbria Integrated Care System, alongside voluntary, community, faith and social enterprise sector (VCFSE) partners and Primary Care Networks (PCNs) in five areas, namely Central Lancashire, Pennine, Blackpool Wyre & Fylde, West Lancashire and Morecombe Bay/South Cumbria to facilitate emerging learning across a range of partners as part of the Test, Learn & Review initiative.

Learning and Evaluation

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The STAGE Project

Topline timings: Jan 2020 – Jan 2021

Live project

Commissioned by:

Changing Lives

Changing Lives has commissioned IVAR to work with the STAGE Project partnership to look at what can be learnt from its approach to partnership within this project.

Comic and PHF

Evaluation of the Tech for Good Programme

Topline timings: October 2019- November 2020

Live project

Commissioned by:

Comic Relief and Paul Hamlyn Foundation

The Tech for Good programme started in 2016 and aimed at ‘enabling not-for-profits in the UK to make the best use of digital technologies to deliver more effective, sustainable and scalable services’.


Legacy of the Big Lunch

Topline timings: May 2020

Live project

Commissioned by:

Eden Project Communities

Eden Project Communities recently appointed IVAR to carry out research that explores the long-term impact of The Big Lunch on both individuals and communities.

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Evaluation and Learning Partner to the Community Leadership Academy

In partnership with: Local Trust

Live project

Local Trust has funded Just Ideas and IVAR to work alongside the new three year Community Leadership Academy in a collaborative and creative way throughout its lifetime. The Community Leadership Academy provides a unique mix of support, training and personal development to Big Local residents making their neighbourhoods better places to live.

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Learning partner for Comic Relief intermediary funding

Topline timings: July 2019 - August 2020

Methodology & process: Facilitation

Live project

IVAR will work with Comic Relief as the Learning Partner for their work with intermediary funders in the UK to support reflection and learning of their processes and experiences.

ERT Circles

The Evaluation Roundtable

Topline timings: The next full convening will be in 2020

Live project

The Evaluation Roundtable is a network of foundation leaders in the UK, the U.S. and Canada. The Roundtable aims to improve evaluative practice in foundations by infusing it with cutting-edge ideas, and by providing foundation staff with an opportunity to refine and deepen their thinking and practice.

Help on your doorstep

Connecting for Change

Topline timings: April 2019 - December 2022

Methodology & process: Learning/Evaluation

Live project

Commissioned by:

Help on your doorstep

Help on Your Doorstep aims to improve the health and wellbeing of people in Islington, especially those who are vulnerable and isolated. The programme aims to work with residents to find solutions to the issues which make life difficult, strengthen communities to do more for themselves and enable people to improve their life chances. IVAR has been appointed to conduct a four year evaluation on the Connecting for Change programme to assess its effectiveness. The approach will be formative, collaborative and aimed at informing Help on Your Doorstep’s future activity, as well as generating learning for relevant partners in Islington and the broader social sector.


Learning Partner to Pears #iwill Fund: Young Volunteers in Hospitals

Topline timings: January 2018 - June 2021

Methodology & process: Learning Partner

Live project

Commissioned by:

Pears #iwill Fund

Pears Foundation, in partnership with the National Lottery Community Fund and the Department for Culture, Media and Sport, is leading a dedicated strand of the #iwill Fund focused on supporting the growth of inclusive, high-quality, youth social action opportunities through NHS Trusts and their respective charities. We have been appointed as learning partner to the fund and will be working with Pears Foundation, the #iwill campaign, volunteer coordinators in funded NHS Trusts and partners.


Tudor Trust Support Programme

Live project

Commissioned by:

Tudor Trust

We provide bespoke organisational reviews to support grantees of the Tudor Trust. These reviews take place across England and involve working with trustees and staff of smaller community-based social welfare organisations.

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