Local Area Coordination in England and Wales
Updates on Local Area Coordination, the work of the Network and
the areas implementing Local Area Coordination.
In this month’s edition we’ll be covering:
- Hello and welcome
- Gathering Together Again
- Learning Disability England – Keeping the Network in the Loop
A note from from Nick Sinclair and Tom Richards,
Director of the Local Area Coordination Network and Local Area Coordination Network Manager
Hello and welcome to this end of year Local Area Coordination Network newsletter. First of all, we hope you have some time of peace and rest coming up over the next few days. This has certainly been another year of change in many ways. No doubt many of you will really be needing a break!
The end of a year offers a chance to reflect back on everything that’s been achieved and to look ahead to what’s happening next, so we thought we’d use that opportunity to share with you some Local Area Coordination Network highlights from 2022, and to announce what you can expect to see from us in 2023.
Firstly, our team has gone through big changes in 2022. We welcomed Lily Williams as our new Membership and Knowledge Coordinator and recruited Tom Richards as our new Local Area Coordination Network Manager. This year we also worked with Surrey, Luton and Nottinghamshire, supporting them to develop and embed their Local Area Coordination approach and recruit their first Local Area Coordinators. We hosted our first in-person Regional Gatherings of Local Area Coordinators and Leaders since 2019, and produced a series of video stories capturing powerful narratives of change from some people who have had a Local Area Coordinator alongside them. We also saw significant and exciting growth in some of our more established Local Area Coordination sites like Derby, Leicestershire, York and Swansea. The increased investment (from a mix of different local government and health sources) signals the great value that is seen in Local Area Coordination as a pragmatic and transformative aspect of our system. It also reflects the positive impact Local Area Coordination has at multiple levels, and is recognition of its absolute relevance in the wake of the challenges we face today as a society.
Another great achievement for us this year was seeing Local Area Coordination referenced in several places in an important report from a House of Lords committee on Adult Social Care. Earlier in the year, Nick Sinclair and Thurrock’s Les Billingham participated in giving testimony to the committee, and as a result their words and reflections are mentioned in several points throughout. You can read the report here.
2023 is certainly going to be a big year for the Local Area Coordination Network. We will be launching our new three-year strategy, finalising our new framework of Local Area Coordination resources, running more learning and networking events, organising a National Gathering, welcoming several new areas to the Network, and much, much more. At the heart of our work though will remain a deep commitment to bringing those engaged in Local Area Coordination together and supporting learning and connectivity. We will continue to work hard, supporting each other through these times, offering encouragement and ideas, and most importantly reflecting together on our guiding principles.
To finish off, we wanted to take this opportunity to say a huge thank you to our members and wider supporters. The time, energy and passion you’ve shared through such a challenging year has been heartening to say the least, and we can’t wait to continue growing our work together in the year ahead. Have a great Christmas period, however you may celebrate it, and enjoy the newsletter!
Nick Sinclair and Tom Richards