3 July 2018

Final report for The Social Change Project published

The Sheila McKechnie Foundation’s latest report urges civil society to unleash its ‘social power’

The Social Change ProjectIllustration: Melissa Smith (FeelGoodMel)

The Sheila McKechnie Foundation (SMK) has published ‘Social Power’, its final report for The Social Change Project. The report urges civil society to unleash its ‘social power’ – what civil society can achieve when working at its best – by being much bolder and braver.

Social Power draws out lessons from recent successes in achieving social change, in order to inform future efforts to effect change. The report highlights examples of where civil society has strengthened policy, changed norms, transformed communities, held formal power to account, and righted wrongs. Case studies include the Living Wage and recent #MeToo campaign. The report is also based on a year-long conversation with practitioners, who shared their experiences, ambitions and frustrations.

The report argues that civil society holds the keys to tackling some of society’s most pressing challenges, but it is currently being constrained, both within the sector and externally. It identifies the ‘Twelve Habits of Successful Change-makers’ that civil society organisations should adopt, and offers targeted advice for funders, sector leaders, and government and regulators.

The Social Change Project, led by SMK, aims to strengthen civil society’s future efforts. Sue Tibballs, CEO of SMK, says the project’s ambition is to act “as a wake-up call and a rallying cry to galvanise a newly emboldened sector and encourage a new settlement with the state.”

CGF UK is part of a consortium of funders which has supported The Social Change Project. It has been led by the Sheila McKechnie Foundation, which is the UK’s leading provider of training and support to those seeking to bring about positive social change.

Read the full publication