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A call to action from DVSC’s Chief Executive – safeguard the National Lottery and make your voice he

As Chief Executive of DVSC, a local third sector infrastructure organisation, whose members include local voluntary and community groups and third sector organisations, I know that small amounts of funding (and the bigger amounts!) can make a huge difference in our communities.

The Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport is consulting on Society Lottery reform, proposing changes to sales and prize limits for both large and small society lotteries. The consultation closes on 7 September and the proposals being consulted on can be found at

The National Lottery is the largest source of community funding in Wales. The funds distributed are public money and distributed for the public good. But the position that the National Lottery has held is now under challenge. Given the importance of the National Lottery (particularly the Big Lottery Fund) in supporting grass roots, local and community based activity, this consultation is extremely important as the proposals, if they remain unchallenged, could have a major impact on the funds available to fund Good Causes locally throughout Denbighshire and Wales.

DVSC is encouraging all our members, partners and civil society organisations in Denbighshire, and across Wales to make their views known. We are also encouraging members and partners to use the information in our consultation response to inform your own submissions.

Finally, I should declare my interests – personal, professional and public - in this issue.

  • I ran small local community based projects funded by Awards for All and the Big Lottery Fund in London and Sussex years many years ago

  • Most third sector organisations I have worked with and for have benefitted at some point from National Lottery funding

  • The organisation I currently lead has benefitted from National Lottery funding for projects and activities, including a major renovation of the Naylor Leyland Centre in 2002

  • DVSC members (and partners) regularly apply for and benefit from National Lottery funding (including from the Big Lottery Fund) to do great things in their communities, and run life changing projects

  • I have worked closely with the Big Lottery Fund Wales team since I returned to live and work in Wales in 2010; first in my role at the Wales Council for Voluntary Action where we worked together to engage and consult the sector on the Fund’s strategic priorities for funding and more recently in my role as Chief Executive of DVSC to promote funding opportunities to our members

  • In February 2018, I joined the Big Lottery Fund’s Wales Committee. This is a public appointment, and I consider it a privilege (and humbling) to have this role, and am consistently inspired to see public money raised through the National Lottery invested in such great causes

The National Lottery is the people’s lottery – publicly accountable for its actions and the good causes it invests in. I believe that further deregulation of the lottery marketplace will add further disruption to an already volatile marketplace, is likely to reduce the funding available for local and community groups and third sector organisations and could have an adverse impact on the vibrancy of the sector, and at time getting funds to the grass roots is needed more than ever.

So I urge everyone who believes in Good Causes, and to making a difference to communities on the ground, and to safeguarding Good Cause income and the public good for future generations to make your voice heard before it is too late!

You are welcome to use our consultation response to support your submission and I urge you to submit your views as an individual and as a representative of an organisation (where possible).

General responses can be submitted by email to or in writing to Gambling and Lotteries team, 4th floor, 100 Parliament Street, London, SW1A 2BQ

Responses to the specific questions asked in the consultation document must be submitted online. The link is here:

Make your Voice Heard.

Kind regards


Helen Wilkinson

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