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- Author or Editor: Sally Rees x
This chapter outlines the context of civil society in Wales during COVID-19. It begins by outlining the situation of civil society at the onset of the pandemic, and noting the challenges faced up to the beginning of the first lockdown, including longer-term challenges such as austerity, volunteering gaps and limitations and more immediate difficulties such as the impact of floods in early 2020 on some organisations.
Since March 2020, the COVID-19 pandemic has had extraordinary effects on the voluntary sector across the four nations of the UK. The advent of the pandemic was preceded by a renegotiation of social policy, and this has played out differently in the four UK nations, which is reflected in variations in relations between the state and the voluntary sector. In this chapter, we draw on the findings of an ESRC-funded project co-produced by a UK-wide team of academics and practitioners. During the pandemic, the work of some volunteer-involving organisations had to be paused, the delivery of some projects reconfigured and new groups and organisations have been established to alleviate the economic and social consequences of the crisis. The chapter focuses on the challenges facing the voluntary sector across the four nations as they move to recovery and reflects on the policy adjustments that would strengthen voluntary sector responses.