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Engaging with local people

Engaging and involving people in everything we do:

What we have done:

Solihull is committed to involving service users and carers in all areas of our day to day business and service planning. Under the national Think Local Act Personal, Making it Real programme, which sets out what people who use services and carers expect to see and experience, we ensure local people are included as equal partners and have their say on services which are important to them.

We work with a group of enthusiastic local people known as the Making it Real Experts by Experience group. They support all Adult Social Care (ASC) key changes, from service redesign to commissioning for specific services, interviewing staff and consultations about future services.

The Council’s Experts by Experience Group has formed a Community Interest Company (CIC) in October 2015.

Setting up the Expert by Experience CIC will ensure the Group is sustainable in the long term while continuing to make a difference to people who use our ASC services. This approach is aligned to the Council’s ‘co-production’ approach with planning and development linking in with the functional review and other relevant transformational changes currently underway in Adult Social Care and the wider implementation of personalisation.

In terms of working with the Group, it’s business as usual for the Council and Adult Social Care. Experts will continue to work with the Council to ensure co-production is at the heart of everything we do and that service users and carers have a voice in their community.

Here are some areas service users and carers have been involved in during 2015:

  • Encouraging people to take up Direct Payments and Telecare and Assistive technology to stay independent, with the maximum choice and control within their daily lives.
  • Working alongside the Care Quality Monitoring team to evaluate that the services provided in people’s homes meet quality standards.
  • Involvement in the Carers Strategy and reviews to ensure more support is available for carers and to promote the valuable support carers provide for those they care for, their families and the Council.
  • Delivery of Dementia Awareness training
  • Advice and input to Support Planning processes
  • Working with Home Care users to capture current good practice and areas for improvement directly from those who use these services, to inform future commissioning and improve services.
  • Ensuring that access arrangements to the new Library and Arts Complex in Solihull are dementia friendly.

Engaging with the Multi Faith Forum to raise awareness of “living with dementia”

“Having Experts by Experience working in partnership in all major project activity that is supporting to deliver Adult Social Care services, is making a difference. To be able to put people who use services and their carers at the heart of what we do will ensure what we plan is what people want to see in their support”

They will will be supporting community capacity building to give the community the skills and confidence to enable them to support themselves and their peers in everyday tasks such as Advocacy. By doing this, we make people identified as vulnerable more sufficient and thereby less reliant on Council services.”