Happy New Year to partners, colleagues and friends – old, new and future!
A lot has been happening over the past few months, with new conversations and action around Local Area Coordination.
So, I thought it was about time to give a brief update!
Of real interest and excitement (to me!) is the wider engagement and desire for collaboration between local people and families, communities and organisations. Whilst for some it is still about “competition, market place and money”, for others, there is a genuine commitment to thinking together, understanding our contributions and gifts (and those of the local people and communities) and the opportunity to work together to build something bigger and more sustainable alongside local people and communities. A great step forward.
I am really grateful for the support, shared ideas and inspiration from friends of the LAC Network, including Samantha Clark (Inclusion North), Sian Lockwood (Community Catalysts), Alex Fox (Shared Lives Plus), Cormac Russell (ABCD Institute), Helen Sanderson (Helen Sanderson Associates), Neil Woodhead (Social Capital Development Manager Derby City) and many others. Together, with local people, communities and statutory partners, we are building positive conversations and actions.
Also, a big thank you to all of the Local Area Coordinators for the valued and inspirational work they are doing alongside local people – it’s great to hear positive stories from local people and communities.
Below is a bit of an update about what’s been happening recently
Monmouthshire – starting the journey
New conversations about Local Area Coordination starting in Monmouthshire.
Great meeting with Simon Burch and Nicki Needle this week (Monday 14th January 2013) thinking about Local Area Coordination contributing to the Monmouthshire positive vision for citizens, local communities and services.
A huge commitment to local people in Monmouthshire.
Thurrock – local people getting ready to find their first Local Area Coordinators
Local people in Thurrock are now ready to find and recruit their first Local Area Coordinators. Hoping to recruit in mid February – very exciting time.
In Thurrock, there is a real passion and commitment to
- standing alongside local people who may be isolated, vulnerable or excluded to help them “stay strong”,
- supporting people and communities to build a positive vision for the future and finding ways of getting there
- the importance of valued relationships
- the importance and value of individual and family leadership
- supporting, nurturing and sharing the strengths and gifts of citizens,
- recognising the amazing gifts, strengths and resources in communities and supporting people who may be isolated, excluded or labeled to be part of, and contribute to, local community life. Welcoming and Inclusive Communities – Stronger Together.
- Valuing strong, personal, local and flexible services as a back up to Local Area Coordination and local solutions.
A huge “thank you” to Neil Woodhead (LAC lead in Derby City) for coming to the Thurrock LAC Steering Group meeting to share LAC stories, experiences and learning from Derby City.
A big commitment to shared learning and mutual support both within communities, but also with citizens and services in other areas. There will be more of this to come in the near future – keep an eye out for some more innovative plans from Thurrock Council.
Derby City – finding out about the gifts, aspirations and mutual support in local communities
Following conversations with Cormac Russell (Managing Director Nurture Development/ABCD Europe), Simran, Rajeev (LACs) and local people who are passionate about their communities have started their local community “treasure hunt”.
Together, they started new conversations about a passions and gifts of local people and their positive vision and action for their local communities.
It didn’t take long to start learning about the wonderful existing gifts, passions and resource within their communities and the great possibilities for contribution and shared learning with local people.
Also, some very positive new stories about helping people to stay strong, build connections and find new possibilities and practical ways or solving problems.
We hope to share more information and stories in a future LAC Network Newsletter.
Care and Support – Pre Scrutiny Paper out now
Shared Lives Plus, Inclusive Neighbourhoods, Inclusion North, Community Catalysts, In Control, Partners in Policy Making and Martin Farran worked together to develop a briefing paper on the Care and Support Bill.
This is an important conversation about the future for all of us. It’s about helping people to stay strong, nurturing more welcoming, inclusive and mutually supportive communities and building more personal, flexible, local, valued services as a “back up” to local solutions.
I hope this is a conversation we can all be part of, contribute to and share ideas about in the future.
Local Area Coordination Network Newsletter
We are currently putting together the Winter issue of the LAC Network Newsletter.
I hope it should be with you by the middle to end of February.
New Paper – Stories from local people about Local Area Coordination
Carol Taylor, Neil Woodhead and I are also now preparing a paper about Local Area Coordination stories in England.
There have been some really positive stories about local people, communities, services and Local Area Coordinators working together to build and pursue a positive vision. There are also many opportunities to continue to think how things can improve or how we can learn. We’ll keep you posted about publication dates
Stockport – thinking about younger people and families
Really interesting and innovative discussions in Stockport this week about nurturing more personal, flexible and integrated support to younger people and their families – 0-25 age group.
Hopefully future opportunities for shared learning.
Thank you to Helen Sanderson who filmed a short summary of some key Local Area Coordination principles during the Stockport discussions. (I’ve almost recovered from the stress of being filmed during a meeting!) You can see it via
Best wishes to all for a great 2013!