Publication - Advice and guidance

The role of third sector interfaces: advice note.

Published: 23 Apr 2015
Part of:
Health and social care

This advice note sets out the role of the third sector interface organisations in relation to health and social care integration activities.

The role of third sector interfaces: advice note.
2. Background

2. Background

There are 32 TSIs in Scotland - one in each Local Authority. Established in 2009 the TSIs build upon an extensive history and knowledge of their sector by means of their predecessor or component organisations. As such some TSIs are single integrated agencies whereas others are partnerships of support organisations; Centres for Voluntary Service (CVS's), Volunteer Centres (VCs) and Social Enterprise Networks (SENs). Some are geographic partnerships, especially in rural areas covering large geographies. The expression 'Third Sector Interface' is in effect a collective noun and all TSIs have their own local brand reflecting local diversity and history as independent third sector support organisations. A full list of the TSIs is available on the Voluntary Action Scotland website. A Scottish Government grant supports a minimum set of "common services" which all TSIs work to.

Of particular note is the TSI role in "building the third sector relationship with community planning". This role has led to effective bridge building by the TSI between the wider third and statutory sectors[2]. The role is supported by locally adapted arrangements developed by TSIs to engage and involve the full range of the third sector in the area to inform their contribution to community planning. These can be a mix of geographic and thematic forums designed around local needs. These arrangements provide a strong basis for further development to support the engagement and involvement requirements of strategic commissioning.

Voluntary Action Scotland (VAS), the network of TSIs gathers and develops case studies that illustrate the different roles and annually produces an 'Impact Report' across the 32 TSIs.