About us

Who we are

3VA as it is now was formed in November 2009, but our roots in the local area stretch back decades. As we work to build the capacity of the third sector in three areas of East Sussex, we decided to call ourselves 3VA - '3 Voluntary Action'.

3VA came about when Eastbourne Association of Voluntary Services (EAVS) joined forces with South Downs Council for Voluntary Service (SDCVS) to create one Council for Voluntary Service to support and develop the voluntary and community sector in the Eastbourne, Lewes District and Wealden areas of East Sussex.

What we do

3VA has a vital role to play and makes a positive impact in the communities we serve. As a local Council for Voluntary Service, we are the champions of our local voluntary sector – the charities, social enterprises and communities making such a difference to people’s lives. These dynamic voluntary organisations of all shapes and sizes make up the members in our extensive network. Find out more by browsing our membership directory and join 3VA if you haven't already!

We play a unique role as an organisation with a trusted relationship with many voluntary organisations. We do this by helping new groups to set up, find funding, improve their governance, and by providing training. We also share information and organise networking opportunities that enable groups to share experience and expertise, and support the sector to have a say in policy and local decision making. Our overall aim is to enable people and organisations to do things for themselves.

3VA is funded by East Sussex County Council, Eastbourne Borough Council, Lewes District Council and Wealden District Council.

Our projects

3VA regularly takes on new project work to support the local voluntary and community sector, including:

3VA is delivering Chances4Change project, which aims to work with existing groups and networks to improve outcomes around mental well-being, physical activity and healthy eating.


Devonshire West Big Local
As the locally trusted organisation, 3VA is the accountable body, holds the funding and is responsible to the Local Trust for project monitoring for the 10 year £1 million, resident-led and Big Lottery funded Devonshire West Big Local (DWBL) project. Devonshire West Big Local offers community groups and local people grants of between £200 and £60,000 to run community projects in the area.


Health and Wellbeing Visits Project
In partnership with East Sussex Fire & Rescue Service, 3VA's Health and Wellbeing Visits Project arranges for older people to be visited in their own homes by trained volunteers for a conversation about their health, wellbeing and fire safety. This is a totally free service and forms part of the work that East Sussex Fire & Rescue Service undertakes around preventing fire and supporting the community.



SpeakUp Countywide Forum
SpeakUp Forum is a countywide project set up by CVS Partnership and hosted by 3VA. It brings together representatives from voluntary and community sector organisations in East Sussex, community networks and Councils for Voluntary Service. SpeakUp Forum helps groups have a say at county level and stay up to date with countywide issues. It also support groups with representation, information, partnerships and networking.


Volunteer Centre East Sussex
Volunteer Centre East Sussex (VCES) was established in 2010 and is funded by East Sussex County Council. VCES services are delivered by a partnership of 3VA, HVA and RVA and provide a range of support for both individuals looking to volunteer and organisations who involve, or would like to involve, volunteers in their work.


Our staff and trustees

Our staff and trustees come from many walks of life, but all have one thing in common: a passion for voluntary action and our local communities.