Engaging and Empowering Communities: a shared commitment and call to action

C4CC partner, Think Local, Act Personal launched  a commitment and call to action on Engaging and Empowering Communities at National Children & Adults Services Conference in Manchester on Wednesday 2 November 2016.

Engaging and Empowering Communities: A Shared Commitment and Call to Action provides a persuasive case for working collaboratively to create strong and empowered communities, which is a key aspect of the Coalition’s ‘three Cs’.

The Coalition for Collaborative Care co-authored the commitment, together with other system leaders including ADASS, Association of Directors of Public Health, Department of Health, Health and Care Voluntary Sector Strategic Partnership, Local Government Association, the new NHS Alliance, NHS Confederation, NHS England, Public Health England, Skills for Care and Think Local Act Personal.

You can download the full commitment here: http://www.thinklocalactpersonal.org.uk/Latest/Engaging-and-Empowering-Communities-a-shared-commitment-and-call-to-action/

Further details, including the press release and where to go for more information can be found below.

For the first time, care leaders are offering a clear way of making sure that community centred approaches are embedded in health and social care services. The clear set of principles and actions are launched today by the Think Local Act Personal Partnership on the first day of the annual National Children & Adults Services Conference in Manchester.

Engaging and Empowering Communities: A Shared Commitment and Call to Action offers a compelling case for working collaboratively to create strong and empowered communities, and for this to be central to the transformation of the health and care sector.  It’s co-authored by all national health and care system leaders including The Association of Directors of Adult Social Services, Coalition for Collaborative Care, Local Government Association, Public Health England, Association of Directors of Public Health, the Department of Health and NHS England.

The report was produced following a National Leaders’ Seminar on community and citizen empowerment, attended by NHS England Chief Executive Simon Stevens, which called for national agencies to work together in realising the policy ambitions of the Care Act and Five Year Forward View.

The report argues for the need to build strong and inclusive communities that can address persistent health and wellbeing inequalities. Key principles and broad actions are set out with a commitment from key partners to develop a detailed plan to support practical actions on the ground.

Kate Sibthorp and Clenton Farquharson, members of TLAP’s National Co-production Advisory Group, said: “A better life for me is just common sense. What we need is for this collaboration to result in all the parts of the system working together to help better lives be a common experience for everyone who use health, care and support services. People who work in this area need to be reminded that knowing you should do something about it is not the same as actually doing something about it. Organisations need to create the conditions for this shared commitment to work, and central to this is having good relationships so we can all work together to support practical action on the ground.
We welcome this report whole-heartedly and hope it will inspire genuine commitment to working with people and communities. We look forward to hearing and sharing lots more stories of how people are achieving their best health and well-being, both physical and emotional, through this approach.”

Alex Fox, CEO of Shared Lives Plus and Think Local, Act Personal’s board lead for building community capacity, said:
“There have always been aspects of our lives, such as the health of our lifestyles or how connected we feel to others,  that have a huge impact on our health and wellbeing and long term use of services. At a time when budgets are more and more stretched, the organisations and resources outlined in the shared commitment will show the help that is out there for hard-pressed commissioners in working with people who use services to develop the health and care system we  need, rather than manage the one we have.”

Lynda Tarpey, Director of Think Local Act Personal, said:
“There is clear consensus amongst sector leaders that people and communities must be central to the redesign of care and other public sector services, using approaches that go beyond traditional statutory interventions.  Increasing evidence from research and practice demonstrates that building community and helping people to develop social networks has the potential to address wellbeing, improve outcomes as well as more effectively apportion limited public finances”.

Anu Singh, NHS England’s Director of Patient and Public Voice and Insight said:
NHS England is delighted to sign up to the Shared Commitment to Engaging and Empowering Communities. The NHS Five Year Forward View sets out our vision to develop a new relationship with people and communities. Aligning the work of national agencies is critical to creating the conditions for success and delivering the ambition to reposition the nation’s health on a social, rather than biomedical model that supports people and communities to manage their health, wellbeing and care. We are looking forward to working together to help make this a reality.”

Martin Farran, Director of Adult Services for York City Council, said:
“I welcome the Shared Commitment across local government and the NHS. It’s a crucial next step to personalising people’s care and support and the “commitment” supports a community asset based approach critical to the transformation of the health and social care system.”

Dr Brian Fisher, GP and Vice-Chair of New NHS Alliance, said:
“The New NHS Alliance is committed to the key ideas and actions recommended in this document – we welcome it. In particular, we see that the NHS and local authorities need to work together with communities to help create health and build confidence and resilience. We see these approaches as essential to shift towards a greater focus of the social determinants of health, health inequalities and improving the control people have over their lives. Working on these issues with other agencies such as housing will be the next paradigm health improvement.”

Catherine Wilton, Director of the Collation for Collaborative Care, said:
“We know that things need to change- councils, clinical commissioning groups and doctors can’t ‘prescribe’ wellbeing- it comes from having friends, family, social contact and support, being able to get out and about, having the opportunity to do something for others and feeling valued for our contributions through paid and unpaid work or being part of a group.
It’s fantastic that national sector leaders are demonstrating a shared commitment to create the conditions for strong and healthy communities. With our partners, the Coalition for Collaborative Care aims to achieve change on the ground. We want to see a shift away from ‘What’s the matter with you?’ to ‘What matters to you?’ by local people and organisations coming together to nurture and build on the assets in local communities, reducing loneliness and social isolation, increasing community resilience and enabling people to take control of managing their own health.”


Download the Engaging and Empowering Communities – A Shared Commitment and Call to Action at http://www.thinklocalactpersonal.org.uk/Latest/Engaging-and-Empowering-Communities-a-shared-commitment-and-call-to-action/


Notes to editors

  • The report will be launched at the Think Local Act Personal Stand B24 at Manchester Central Exhibition Hall at 5:00pm, Wednesday 2 November. All delegates attending the National Children’s & Adults Services Conference are welcome to the launch.
  • TLAP convened a National Leaders Seminar in June 2015 which brought together key public sector system leaders including NHS England CE Simon Stevens. The aim of the seminar was to develop a shared narrative about the importance of engaging and empowering communities in achieving sustainable health and wellbeing. This was followed by regional events in which several hundred sector colleagues contributed to the narrative.
  • This shared commitment has been co-authored by all national system leaders: ADASS, Association of Directors of Public Health, Coalition for Collaborative Care, Department of Health, Health and Care Voluntary Sector Strategic Partnership, Local Government Association, the new NHS Alliance, NHS Confederation, NHS England, Public Health England, Skills for Care and Think Local Act Personal.
  • Local areas will define how they propose to effect community capacity building at local level with detailed action plans to include approaches such as co-production, asset-based commissioning and evidence-based practice.
  • National Children and Adult Services Conference takes place in Manchester Central from 2 – 4 November 2016. It is organised by the Association of Directors of Social Services (ADASS), the Local Government Association (LGA) and the Association of Directors of Children’s Services (ADCS) and is regularly attended by more than 1,000 delegates. It is vital to all with responsibilities for or interests in social care, children’s services, education, health and related fields.
  • Think Local Act Personal (TLAP) is an alliance of over 50 national social care, health and housing partners committed to improving the delivery of personalised, community-based care and support. It brings together people who use services and family carers, central and local government, major provider bodies, the third and voluntary sector and other key groups to work together to ensure people live better lives.

For more information, contact jaimee.lewis@tlap.org.uk / 07850 774453

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