Person kayaks on a lake in front of country landscape

Catalyst Cymru: Resilient Heritage

The Catalyst Cymru: Resilient Heritage project provides in-depth support for heritage organisations in Wales.

Following on from the success of the Catalyst Cymru – Heritage Fundraising project (2014-2018), WCVA are pleased to be continuing our work with the heritage sector through the new Catalyst Cymru: Resilient Heritage project. 

Thanks to National Lottery players and the National Lottery Heritage Fund, Catalyst Cymru: Resilient Heritage will provide heritage organisations from across Wales with in-depth support to further develop their organisation.

Resilience in voluntary sector organisations goes beyond income generation. As well as continuing to offer support with fundraising, this new Catalyst Cymru project will also support organisations to further develop areas such as governance, marketing and social media, project management, business planning and impact measurement. 

We will provide this support through three main activities between July 2019 and June 2021: 

  1. We will be providing six days of in-depth executive coaching in order to build knowledge and confidence in the areas mentioned above. There are 25 places available to heritage organisations. 
  2. WCVA will be running a programme of training courses and webinars targeted at heritage organisations.
  3. During the second year, we will be working with heritage organisations who have received support through both Catalyst Cymru projects to provide peer-to-peer mentoring to even more heritage organisations. 

Who is Catalyst Cymru: Resilient Heritage for?

Catalyst Cymru: Resilient Heritage is made up of three activities. Our executive coaching is open to heritage organisations, the training programme is open to all staff, volunteers and trustees within the heritage sector in Wales, and the peer mentoring will be available to Chief Executives/Senior Management/Trustees working or volunteering for heritage organisations in 2020. 

In line with the National Lottery Heritage Fund, our definition of ‘heritage’ includes:

  • Historic buildings and monuments
  • Nature and landscapes (historic gardens, wildlife, woodland)
  • Industrial, maritime and transport 
  • Museums, libraries, archives and collections
  • Intangible heritage (such as the preservation of memories, or oral history projects)
  • Community heritage

How to get involved

For an application pack and form for the Executive Coaching, please contact Siobhan Hayward, Catalyst Project Officer at or on 02920 435 761.

To see information about the training programme, please visit WCVA’s training and events pages and look out for the Catalyst Cymru logo.

Catalyst Cymru – Heritage Fundraising

Our Catalyst Cymru-Heritage Fundraising project ran from 2014-2018 and specifically looked at helping heritage organisations to develop their fundraising capacity and become more sustainable. Learning from this project has helped inform our new project – Catalyst Cymru: Resilient Heritage. 

The independent evaluation of Catalyst Cymru – Heritage Fundraising, conducted by Wavehill, found that the project has been extremely successful.

Key findings from the evaluation showed:

  • 44% of organisations noted immediate sustained or increased income as a result of Catalyst training.
  • 85% expected sustained or increased income from private sources in the next 12 months

As a result of Catalyst training…

  • 74-90% of respondents reported greater knowledge
  • 68-83% reported increased awareness
  • 65-81% reported increased confidence
  • 70-79% reported improved skills around fundraising from private sources
  • 82% expect to further implement learning from training in future
  • 83% will pass on what they’ve learnt
  • 79-83% think the learning will further impact upon their everyday work

To see the full evaluation, click here.

About the funders

CyMAAL (Museums, Archives, Arts and Libraries), part of Welsh Government, have part-funded the executive coaching for Catalyst Cymru: Resilient Heritage.

CyMAAL helps promote and protect the culture and heritage of Wales by providing advice and support to local museums, archives and libraries in Wales on professional standards, expertise and skills, operating grant and develops research and baseline information across the sector. It also manages the policy and operational work relating to the sponsorship of the two national institutions – the National Library of Wales and Amgueddfa Cymru – National Museum Wales.

National Lottery Heritage Fund

The National Lottery Heritage Fund is the largest dedicated funder of heritage in the UK. They believe that understanding, valuing and sharing our heritage brings people together, inspires pride in communities and boosts investment in local economies.

  • They distribute National Lottery grants from £3,000 to £5 million and over, funding projects that sustain and transform the UK’s heritage
  • They provide leadership and support across the heritage sector, and advocate for the value of heritage

Get in touch:

If you’re a heritage organisation with any development needs, have an idea you want to run past us or if you want to find out how Catalyst Cymru can help you, then please get in touch. We’d love to hear from you!

Or if you want to keep in touch with the latest project developments, follow us on our twitter account @CatalystCymru.

Useful links

Online funding searches

The Heritage Alliance Funding Directory

The Directory is a free, easy to use guide to potential sources of support, financial and otherwise, for anyone seeking to undertake projects related to the heritage of the United Kingdom. It is managed by the Heritage Alliance and the Architectural Heritage Fund.

Lottery Good Causes – Fund Funding for your Project

Here you can search for the right National Lottery funding programme for your project or activity.

Funding Wales

Funding Wales is the funding search tool created by Third Sector Support Wales. It’s a free basic online funding search that can help identify suitable funding opportunities, from small grants to large capital projects and loan finance opportunities. 

Other resources

AIM – Association of Independent Museums

AIM is a thriving membership network for independent museums, galleries and heritage organisations across the UK.

Architectural Heritage Fund

The Architectural Heritage Fund (AHF) is a registered charity, working since 1976 to promote the conservation and sustainable re-use of historic buildings for the benefit of communities across the UK. AHF do this by providing advice, information and financial assistance in the form of early project grants and loans for projects undertaken by charities and not-for-profit private organisations.

Art Fund 

The Art Fund is the national fundraising charity for art. The fund helps museums and galleries buy works of art and helps the public make the most of the UK’s fascinating collections. The website hosts Art Happens, one of the best known crowdfunding arts and heritage crowdfunding platforms. 

Association of Cultural Enterprises

The Association for Cultural Enterprises promotes commercial best practice in the UK’s cultural and heritage sector by providing training and networking opportunities and facilitating the sharing of information and experience between its members.

The British Association of Friends of Museums

The British Association of Friends of Museums, BAFM, is here to help, encourage, inform and advise friends, supporters and volunteers of museums, galleries, and other cultural organisations in all sections of our UK heritage.

BAFM supports local Friends’ groups, keeps them informed about items of benefit, and provides a network to help share problems and solutions.

Charity Commission 

The Charity Commission is the independent regulator for charitable activity: enabling charities to maximise their impact; ensuring compliance with legal obligations; encouraging innovation and effectiveness; championing the public interest in charity to promote the public’s trust and confidence.

Community Knowledge Hub

The Community Knowledge Hub is for Libraries and brings expert guidance and resources together with an interactive community of organisations and local authorities involved with community managed and supported libraries. Can give advice on co-production and asset transfers. A service provided by Locality.

Third Sector Support Wales

Third Sector Support Wales (TSSW) is a network of support organisations for the third sector in Wales. Our shared goal is to enable the third sector and volunteers across Wales to contribute fully to individual and community well-being, now and for the future.

TSSW comprises of all 19 county voluntary councils and WCVA. Your local county voluntary council provides advice and information on fundraising and other fundraising sources, as well as assisting you with matters such as your governance.


AMA helps people working in arts and cultural organisations reach more audiences with training, events and resources.

Directory of Social Change

DSC is an independent organisation providing training courses, publications, online funding databases, research and conferences to the voluntary sector. They also run a bookshop and host lots of free resources on their website, including top tips and best-practice articles. 

Cynnal Cymru

Cynnal Cymru’s overall focus is on developing and promoting a sustainable, resource-efficient and low-carbon society through engagement with enterprises, the third sector and communities. They connect local and national organisations together from across Wales to help each other develop more sustainable services and operations. Cynnal Cymru provide high quality services to organisations to make them more Sustainable – these come under Cynnal Connect and Cynnal Consult.

Welsh Museums Federation

The Federation of Museums & Art Galleries of Wales is the strategic body for museum and art gallery professionals in Wales. 

The Federation’s three key messages are:

  • Museums empower people through learning, participation and inspiration
  • Museums and their collections strengthen community identity
  • Museums make a significant economic contribution through tourism and regeneration

Fundraising Regulator

The Fundraising Regulator is an independent, non-statutory body that regulates fundraising across the charitable sector in England, Wales and Northern Ireland. They stand up for best practice in fundraising, in order to protect donors and support the vital work of fundraisers. They work in partnership with other regulators and the representative bodies in the charitable and fundraising sectors to build public confidence and ensure consistent fundraising standards across the UK. The Regulator holds The Codes of Fundraising Practice and administers the Fundraising Preference Service.

The National Lottery Heritage Fund 

Formerly known as the Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF), the National Lottery Heritage Fund is the largest dedicated funder of heritage in the UK.

They believe that understanding, valuing and sharing our heritage brings people together, inspires pride in communities and boosts investment in local economies.

  • NLHF distributes National Lottery grants from £3,000 to £5million and over, funding projects that sustain and transform the UK’s heritage
  • NLHF provides leadership and support across the heritage sector, and advocate for the value of heritage to modern life. From museums, parks and historic places to archaeology, natural environment and cultural traditions, NLHF invests in every part of our heritage.

The National Lottery Heritage Fund are the main funder of the Catalyst Cymru: Resilient Heritage project. 

The Institute of Fundraising

The Institute of Fundraising is the national professional membership body for UK fundraising and provides guidance, training and qualifications on a range of fundraising methods. IoF Cymru run training, networking events and conferences specifically for fundraisers and charities in Wales. 


Locality helps people to set up locally owned and led organisations. They support community organisations to be strong and successful, to meet local needs and to give people a purpose, good places to live and good health. They have a membership network, provide resources and specialist advice and support and campaign to create a better operating environment for community organisations. 

Museums Association

The museums association is an independent membership organisation for everyone working in museums, galleries and heritage.

Small Charities Coalition

The Small Charities Coalition supports small charities to access the skills, tools and information they need to get going and do what they do best. 


A ‘showcase of fundraising innovation and inspiration‘, SOFII is a website full of fundraising resources, case studies and tools to help you with your own fundraising. 

United Kingdom Association of Building Preservation Trusts (UKABPT)

Promotes and supports the rescue and sustainable use of historic buildings.

UK Fundraising

A rich array of useful fundraising information, news and resources.

WCVA (Wales Council for Voluntary Action)

WCVA’s purpose is to enable voluntary organisations in Wales to make a bigger difference together. WCVA is the national membership body for voluntary organisations in Wales.

Wales Environment Link

Wales Environment Link (WEL) is a network of environmental, countryside and heritage non-governmental organisations with an all-Wales remit.

Volunteering Wales

Volunteering Wales is an online portal that supports volunteer recruitment and placement.