WCVA has been supporting people and organisations for 80 years
since the organisation was set up in 1934 as the South Wales and
Monmouthshire Council of Social Services to help people during the
Depression of the 1930s.
During that time we organised activities at more than 200 clubs
and centres for unemployed people, funded district nurses,
supported libraries in the valleys and helped create co-operative
schemes to dig mountain coal.
Today, we work with thousands of organisations in communities
across the whole of Wales and employ over 100 people at our offices
in Cardiff, Aberystwyth and Rhyl.
The scope of our work grew significantly in the 1970s when we
were invested in to support and train unemployed young people.
Our work in this area continues today through a range of
projects that involve training and supported employment
opportunities for people that are disadvantaged within the labour
In the 1980s we adopted the name Wales Council for Voluntary
Action, which has been popularly abbreviated to WCVA. We also
launched our flagship magazine, Network Wales, began administering
the Volunteering in Wales Fund and launched training and funding
advice services for the sector - all of which are still at the
heart of what we do today.
Since 2000, we have developed and managed
projects with a range of funders including the EU,
Welsh Government and Big Lottery Fund which has seen over a quarter
of a billion pounds - £250 million - reach third sector
organisations the length and breadth of Wales.
We are also leading the way in the field of social investment
through a portfolio of loan finance that is creating a stronger
entrepreneurial culture in Wales' third sector.
In 2004 we launched the Wales Volunteer of the Year
Awards to promote and recognise Welsh volunteers and since
then over 2,000 of Wales' most inspiring people have been
Over the years, we have also helped establish a network of
Citizens Advice Bureaux in Wales, and have supported the creation
of organisations such as Age Concern Cymru (now Age Cymru),
Disability Wales and the Council for Wales of Youth Voluntary
As we celebrate our 80th anniversary in 2014, we have grown into
a national umbrella body with over 3,000 organisations as members,
and together with Wales' network of County Voluntary Councils and
Volunteer Centres, we provide a support infrastructure for the
whole of the third sector in