What is a TSI?
TSIs have one mission at their heart: to build empowered, resilient communities with a thriving third sector. The 32 Third Sector Interfaces (TSIs) across Scotland build on a long history of local third sector infrastructure. They have experience of helping communities help themselves through the power of volunteering. They harness the passion of individuals to come together to improve their community. They build social value by developing enterprising agencies whose profit is for the community they seek to serve. They put the community at the heart of local decisions by ensuring the views of the third sector and the communities they support are heard and understood. They work without boundaries to broker social capital and bring people together to deliver change.
How a TSI works
Like the third sector they serve, Scotland’s TSIs are diverse reflecting local needs, priorities and heritage. 20 of them are single agencies and 12 of them are formed of partnerships across bodies historically associated with supporting their local voluntary sector, social enterprises and volunteers. Some of these are ‘Volunteer Centres’, ‘Centres for Voluntary Service’ or ‘Social Enterprise Networks’. Your local TSI might be known by one of these titles, as a ‘TSI’ or a local ‘Voluntary Action’ agency. They are independent from Government but the Scottish Government invests in four key functions which form a bedrock to their role.
TSIs are held to account through a set of common standards, services and outcomes agreed with the Scottish Government and against which they report. From this bedrock they grow a diverse range of services and support that is flexible and focussed on need as they find it.
Increasingly TSIs also play a role in brokering social capital, bringing together different agents locally across sectors to address specific issues from reshaping care to early years, community transport and more.
For more in depth information on the role we play, please click here.