Community Voices are individuals working in the Voluntary, Comunity and Social Enterprise sector who are trained to engage with the local population on Greater Huddersfield CCG’s behalf and talk to them about changes and developments in health services. Community Voices give communities a louder voice and help to make sure that health services are developed in response to the needs of local people.
VAC – Improving Local Lives Greater Huddersfield, in partnership with Greater Huddersfield Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG), offers free training for local people to become Community Voices and help local communities to have a say when changes to health services are proposed.
The NHS has a duty to involve local communities when health changes are being considered and the training provides the knowledge and skills needed to carry out engagement and consultation work on behalf of the NHS locally.
What is Engagement and Consultation?
Engagement is an ongoing dialogue with the local population which seeks to build up a positive and meaningful relationship.
Consultation is the formal process of asking the public their views on any proposals to change the way a service is provided and delivered.
What’s involved with being a Community Voice?
Community Voices are from local voluntary or community organisations*, have strong links to their community and enjoy listening and talking to people. Because their role is to talk to local communities about changes to local health services, it is important they have an interest in health issues.
The mandatory training is spread over 1 full day and 2 half day sessions and has 5 elements, including a practical task:
- Understanding how the NHS Works
- Legal and Statutory Duties of the NHS
- Methods and Approaches to Engagement and Consultation
- A Practical Task
- Equalities, safeguarding and review and evaluation
Once the training has been completed Community Voices are:
- Offered opportunities to carry out surveys or run focus groups
- Able to earn money for their local voluntary or community organisation for each survey completed
- Invited to local events where they can meet with the people and organisations involved in shaping local health services
On completion of the training Community Voices receive a certificate valid for 12 months. It’s easily renewed by taking part in an annual refresher session.
To gain your certificate you must attend all the sessions and successfully complete the practical task.
*The role of voluntary and community organisations
Because Community Voices must have links to a local voluntary, community or social enterprise (VCSE) organisation, that organisation must confirm it meets certain standards. This is to make sure that the organisation can deliver any engagement or consultation activities safely and competently.
To book a place on any of our Community Voices Programmes, please email email@example.com
Programme 3 Winter 2020
|Day 1||Wednesday 15th January 2020
9.30am – 3pm
|How the NHS Works (AM)
Legal and Statutory Duties (PM)
|Brian Jackson House,
2 New North Parade,
|Day 2||Wednesday 22nd January 2020
9.30am – 3pm
|Methods and approaches||As above|
|Day 3||Wednesday 4th March
9.30am – 12 noon
|Equalities, Safeguarding, review and evaluation||As above|
To help support the development of a new model for wheelchair services, NHS Calderdale and NHS Greater Huddersfield Clinical Commissioning Groups wished to engage with service users, carers and stakeholders to help them improve this model and inform decisions on what a good quality service looks like if the resources are in the right place.
As part of their approach to improving healthcare available to people living across the district, NHS Greater Huddersfield and NHS North Kirklees Clinical Commissioning Groups, in partnership with the Local Authority, wanted to engage with patients, family and carers and staff on NHS commissioned services for people who have a serious mental illness, that includes a primary diagnosis of psychosis, including people with a dual diagnosis.
The purpose of the engagement is to provide a picture of A&E over a one week period by surveying people who attend A&E and then do a follow up survey 7 days later. The information gathered would then be used to tell NHS Calderdale and NHS Greater Huddersfield Clinical Commissioning Groups what else needs to be done to support people in the local community who may not have needed to go to A&E.
Past Engagement & Consultation Projects
Please click on the link to find the report of findings from all past engagement and consultations. You will be able to access a full report of findings and it will also tell you what has happened as a result of the work so you can share with your networks.
A report by Voluntary Action Calderdale – March 2019
External Engagement Opportunities
Mencap’s survey of people with a learning disability
Mencap is inviting people with a learning disability to take part in the first countrywide survey of people with a learning disability in 15 years.
The survey is the chance for people with a learning disability to share their experiences. It was fully co-produced by people with a learning disability, and asks questions on topics they say are important to them, including health, relationships, employment and inclusion.
Mencap hopes that the findings will be useful across the sector, to fill in knowledge gaps and help provide better support to people with a learning disability. They will share the findings in the summer, and provide access to the data so that other organisations can use it too.
Help Mencap to make this the biggest survey of people with a learning disability ever by sharing the information with your networks and with any adults you know who have a learning disability.
If you have any questions, please email the research team
Carers UK State of Caring 2019 survey
The survey is the UK’s most comprehensive research into the lives and experience of carers and many professionals who work with carers find the results provide a useful evidence base for their work locally.
Last year it was completed by over 7000 carers and Carers UK used the evidence to push carers up the agenda for policy makers and to campaign for recognition and change across the UK.
Please share this survey with your contacts locally and consider filling it in if you are a carer yourself. The closing date is 24 May 2019 to allow enough time for this to be circulated to carers through local newsletters.
Healing after birth survey
As you will be aware North Kirklees Maternity Voices Partnership (NKMVP) have been working in partnership with Healthwatch and service users to produce a survey asking about the information and support women received following stitches/bruising after birth. They hope that the results of the survey will enable them to create a resource to help local women. NKMVP have included postcodes for Calderdale, Huddersfield and Dewsbury so that the survey can go Kirklees wide.
The survey is now live!
Contact Community Voices
For more information please contact Sarah Dawson on 01422 431094 or email firstname.lastname@example.org