A physical activity instructor providing yoga to a large group of people at a park in Barnstaple on a sunny day.

Physical Activity Providers Resources to Help Achieve Best Practice

Physical activity providers, we want to support you and your organisation to be resilient and able to sustain your offer and meet local community needs, both now and into the future.

We also want to support you as an individual. Whilst you spend considerable time helping others, it’s important to take time for yourself.

To help, we’ve put together the following information from us and our trusted partners. Please click on the links below to explore the different resources and areas of support. This includes resources to support your organisation to meet governance requirements and achieve best practice. Plus, resources to help you connect effectively and promote your offer in your community. We’ve also included tips and ideas to support you and your wellbeing.

Content Sections for Quick Reference

  • Connecting with Your Community
  • Governance
  • Finance and Funding
  • Safeguarding & Welfare
  • Your Health and Wellbeing
  • Equality, Diversity and Inclusion
  • Environmental Sustainability
  • Promoting Your Activity
  • Get in Touch

Connecting with Your Community

Devon Voluntary Action (DeVA)

Devon Voluntary Action (DeVA) provides individuals, not-for-profit groups, and social enterprises with the support they need to help improve their local communities. Such as, helping to develop skills, build relationships and obtain resources. DeVA is a partnership organisation of six local charities. These are: Involve Mid Devon, North Devon Voluntary Services, South Hams Community and Voluntary Services, Teignbridge Community and Voluntary Services, Torridge Community and Voluntary Services and West Devon Community and Voluntary Services.

For your local Community Builders and Connectors – contact us

Devon has a number of voluntary and community support organisations. These organisations work to increase community connection, support voluntary and community sector groups, and help to build healthy and resilient communities. Community Builders and Community Connectors help to achieve this by building connections between residents and community groups. If you would like help connecting with your local Community Builders and Community Connectors, please get in touch. You can find the details for your local Active Devon community-based lead via the link above.

Learn more about Devon Connect

Devon Connect is a free online community hub for residents and communities across Devon (currently not including Plymouth). As a local group or organisation, you can make connections and share knowledge, information and resources. You can also provide comprehensive what’s on listings and attract new members or recruit volunteers. Click on the link above to go to the Devon Connect website. 

You can also watch this short video which shows you how to set up a profile, add a listing and add an event on Devon Connect.

Discover more about Joy

Linked to Devon Connect, Joy is a platform used by social prescribers and other health and personalised care roles. Each time you post an event or community listing on Devon Connect this activity can be shared with the Joy Marketplace. The Joy Marketplace is then used by social prescribers and other health and personalised care roles to signpost patients to local services and activities that could improve their health and wellbeing outcomes. You can discover more about Joy via the link above.

Access the Plymouth Online Directory

Provided by Plymouth City Council, the Plymouth Online Directory contains information, advice, help, and support services for adults, young people, and families who live and work in Plymouth. The majority of this website is focused on health, education, social, and wellbeing services and creating a page on the directory is free and simple to do.

For social prescribing teams in your area – contact us

Social prescribing is a means of enabling health professionals to refer people to a range of local, non-clinical services, community groups and activities. It is designed to support people with a wide range of social, emotional or practical needs, and many schemes are focused on improving mental health and physical wellbeing. There are different social prescribing models being employed across Devon. If you offer an activity which could support these audiences and you would like help connecting with your local social prescribing teams, please get in touch. You can find the details for your local Active Devon community-based lead via the link above.

Active Devon place-based leads

These are our ‘front line’ officers in designated localities across the county who have a role to help and advise local community-based groups who help people to get active. Please contact your local community-based lead via the link above, if you have any further questions.


Guidance on choosing your legal structure – NVCO

The National Council for Voluntary Organisations (NVCO) guidance is designed to help small charities and voluntary organisations understand what to consider when choosing a legal structure and the main characteristics of different legal structures.

Sport England recognised NGBs

Sport England invest in and provide a range of services to National Governing Bodies (NGBs) to encourage more people to play sport and be physically active.

Governance resources – Buddle

These governance resources provided by Buddle are designed to support good governance, ensuring your organisation is properly structured and has the right people, policies and procedures in place. This includes information on legal requirements and liabilities and the requirements of the Code for Sports Governance.

Health Check Tool – Buddle

This Buddle Health Check Tool is a self-assessment tool designed to support anyone that runs a community sports club, group or organisation. The tool checks current processes across five operational areas and identifies key areas of development to ensure you are providing a safe environment, whilst meeting your legal requirements.

Finance and Funding

Financial management resources – Buddle

The easy-to-use resources and simple advice and guidance can help with all aspects of your organisation’s financial management. Such as, having the right processes and practices in place, financial forecasting and monitoring your finances. Plus, generating income and being aware of any tax implications that may affect your organisation.

Financial procedures manual – NVCO

The templates and guidance from the National Council for Voluntary Organisations (NVCO) provides small charities and voluntary organisations with a framework for managing your organisations finances.

Funding and income help and guidance – NVCO

The National Council for Voluntary Organisations (NVCO) provides small charities and voluntary organisations with practical tips and step-by-step guides on how to find the money you need for your community group, organisation or charity.

Active Devon’s Minimum Operating Standards

If you’re looking to apply for funding from us, you will first need to meet our Minimum Operating Standards, (MOS). Find out more about MOS and what you need to do.

Safeguarding and Welfare

Active Devon’s safeguarding advice and information

Our Safeguarding pages provide information and advice on Safeguarding, including how to raise a safeguarding concern and Active Devon’s safeguarding policy.

Explore welfare and safeguarding – Buddle

This essential information from Buddle includes what you should know about welfare and safeguarding, getting the right polices in place and health and safety needs to consider. It also references further support and advice from the Child Protection in Sport Unit and the Ann Craft Trust.

Safeguarding help and guidance – NCVO

These resources and guides from the National Council for Voluntary Organisations (NVCO) are designed to help small charities and voluntary organisations do safeguarding well.

Free safeguarding resource for group exercise Instructors – EMD UK

EMD UK (the National Governing Body for Group Exercise) have compiled key information on safeguarding for group exercise Instructors into a free downloadable resource in collaboration with the Child Protection in Sport Unit and the Ann Craft Trust.

Your Health and Wellbeing

Looking after your own mental health and wellbeing resource – UK Coaching

UK Coaching acknowledges that if those who help other people to be more active are to be successful and help people to thrive then they must also be supported to ensure they are happy and thriving in their role. The resource contains advice and tips to maintain a positive mental state.

Free mental health resource – EMD UK

EMD UK (the National Governing Body for Group Exercise) have compiled key information from the NHS, mental health charities and the fitness industry into a free downloadable resource for group exercise Instructors and their class participants.

Five Ways to Wellbeing – Mind

Mind, the UK’s leading mental health charity share some advice on simple steps you can take every day to improve your wellbeing.

Equality, Diversity and Inclusion

Equality Act 2010 guidance | Easy Read – the Equality Act – making equality real

The Equality Act 2010 legally protects people from discrimination in the workplace and in wider society. The government guidance details who is protected from discrimination, the types of discrimination under the law and what action you can take if you’ve been unfairly discriminated against.

Understanding The Equality Act guidance – Buddle

Understanding the Equality Act guidance from Buddle explores the Equality Act 2010 and what this means for community organisations.

The Equality Act: your legal duties guidance – NVCO

This guidance from the National Council for Voluntary Organisations (NCVO) explains some key aspects of the Equality Act 2010 as they apply to voluntary organisations.

Videos on understanding inclusivity – Buddle

These videos from Buddle explore why inclusivity is important, what it means to individuals and how clubs and groups can champion this.

How to create an inclusive environment guidance – Buddle

This guidance from Buddle has been put together to help organisations consider ways to create an inclusive environment for all.

Active Devon’s commitment to equality, diversity and inclusion

These pages set out our equality, diversity and inclusion commitments and policy.

Environmental Sustainability

Animation video on understanding environmental sustainability – Buddle

This animation is on the Buddle website. It explores the importance of sustainable practices and identifies ways for organisations, clubs and groups to champion positive action and embed sustainability in everything they do. There is a video description available for those who can not view the animation.

Promoting Your Activity

Marketing guidance – Buddle

This marketing guidance from Buddle covers how to develop a marketing strategy, develop an online presence and use social media and more. The guidance includes helpful advice on inclusive marketing considerations.

Digital Marketing Hub – CIMSPA

This free online resource from the Chartered Institute for the Management of Sport and Physical Activity (CIMSPA) and Sport England is designed to help anyone involved in sport and physical activity to improve their digital marketing.

Understanding Digital Communications, Campaigns and Technology – NCVO

This guidance from the National Council for Voluntary Organisations (NVCO) provides small charities and voluntary organisations with a very basic introduction to digital communications, campaigns and content in the charity sector. It also includes signposting to further sources of support.

Get in Touch

We hope you find these resources helpful and would love your feedback on how you are using them and the impact it has made. You may also have other resources that we could share? Please contact your local place-based lead from Active Devon.