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Commissioning can be defined as the cycle of assessing the needs of people in an area, designing and then securing an appropriate service through a tender process.   The London Borough of Richmond upon Thames is now a commissioning council for some of it's services. 

Richmond CVS is able to provide a range of support and information to organisations that want to think about or intend to bid for contracts.

Commissioning for Children & Young People's Services

Key Sources of Information


Commissioning for Children and Young People’s Services

Commissioning in LBRUT Education and Children’s Services is now fully established, and is lead and managed by a joint commissioner for local authority and health spend on child and families services. Tender adverts are published on the LBRUT website. You can also find further information about the LBRUT procurement function including a glossary of procurement terminology.


Achieving for Children (AfC) is the local authority company set up by the Royal Borough of Kingston upon Thames and the London Borough of Richmond upon Thames to run children’s services for both boroughs, with the aim to deliver improved outcomes for children, young people and their families and carers. Achieving for Children will operate as a Community Interest Company jointly owned by the two Councils.

Achieving for Children’s vision is as follows:

"Achieving for Children, the joint Children’s Service for Kingston and Richmond, is passionate about ensuring the best possible outcomes for children and their families and will deliver the services they need to live safe, happy, healthy and successful lives.”

The values for AfC are :

· We put children and young people first

· We focus on quality and innovation

· We value diversity and champion inclusion

· We area listening and learning organisation

· We work in partnership to improve our services

Achieving for Children will encompass all children’s services delivered in Richmond and Kingston with the exception of Culture & Lifelong Learning Services, and will be organised into five business areas:

  • Safeguarding services: services delivering safeguarding and children’s social care
  • Protection and Early Help: targeted services focusing on early intervention, prevention and inclusion
  • Education services: school improvement support (primary, secondary and post 16) and school effectiveness (admissions and school place planning)
  • Standards and improvement: delivering a range of support services and quality assurance
  • Finance and resources: delivering financial planning and managing AfC resources

AfC will be operational from 1st April 2014.


The role of both councils as commissioners is currently being clarified. For now both boroughs will retain separate Children and Young People's (CYP) Plans which will set the key commissioning priorities. Both borough CYP Plans for 2013-17 are published on their websites and should be read in conjunction with the Joint Strategic Needs Assessment and other key documents outlined on the LBRUT website to inform your applications and understand better where your service can contribute to meeting local need.

To keep up to date with tenders adverts and other resources and funding opportunities in the borough for CYP services please subscribe to the monthly RCVS CYP voluntary sector Digest. 

For advice and guidance on LBRUT CYP commissioning please contact Heather Mathew Strategic Lead CYP Voluntary Sector.


Key Sources of Information

We've prepared a TUPE Briefing for Guidance to highlight the factors that may need to be considered when taking on a new service that might bring with it existing employees.

There is a lot of different terminology used in the commissioning process which can be confusing.  NAVCA have published a glossary of terms which may be helpful.

London Borough of Richmond Upon Thames (LBRUT) Procurement page updates contract announcements.

LBRuT Corporate Procurement have produced a Selling to Richmond Guide(pdf, 88KB) which offers useful guidance to potential contractors/service providers.  


NCVO (National Council for Voluntary Organisations)- Part of the Sustainable Funding Project- Public Sector Delivery Network offer a wide range of resources for VCOs engaged in or considering service delivery under contract and for commissioners working with the voluntary sector. You can register online for a monthly bulletin on public service delivery.


NAVCA (National Association for Voluntary and Community Action) is the national voice of local support and development organisations in England. However they have information and resources on commissioning and tendering which groups themselves may find useful.


"AT Your Bidding" is a guide for charity trustees about commissioning and tendering for public services, published in partnership with the Local Government Association.


A useful resource is the joint NAVCA/NCVO publication:

 "Pathways Through The Maze a Guide to  Procurement Law"


Government Equalities Office- for information on Equalities Legislation


The Charity Commission provides information that may be helpful to charities that are considering public service delivery.

CC37 Charities & Public Service Delivery

CC35 Trustees, Trading & Tax