Working with Involvement Partners – Making a difference

Working with Involvement Partners – Making a difference

We are committed to working together with service users, carers and families (as well as other partners – e.g. local charities, advocacy groups and volunteers) when we’re designing, planning and improving services because bringing in a range of views, skills, knowledge and experiences means we make better informed decisions that lead to services that are more caring and better meet people’s needs.

We developed The Collaborative Model in 2017 which guides the way we work together, and we have since collated and created lots of resources to help our staff involve people in changing services, however big or small those changes are.

Our Involvement Principles

We aim to involve people in a way that is genuine and respectful (hearing what people have to say, and ensuring they have influence over the decisions to be made), inclusive (bringing together a diverse group of people) and supportive (meaning we enable and empower people to contribute fully).

By focussing on what matters to them, we will provide services that better meet people’s needs and make a positive difference to their health and wellbeing.

We follow the below Involvement Principles when we’re creating partnerships and involving people in improvement work:

Ensure people can have influence over decisions and make a difference
Include and listen to people with lived experience in collaborative partnerships
Include and listen to the diverse communities we work with in collaborative partnerships. We should also reach out beyond the collaborative partnership and connect with the wider community so other people can share their views and contribute to the partnership’s work
Give time to build relationships in the collaborative partnership based on mutual trust and respect, kindness, openness and honesty and listen to people with lived experience
Support people so they can use and develop their knowledge and skills to contribute effectively
Plan, decide and act together including agreeing the purpose, resources, outcomes and timescales from the start of the work
Have honest conversations that that emphasise dialogue where we listen to and understand others’ views and agendas and give the time to arrive at collective answers
Make communication simple, accessible and inclusive, share the information that enables people to be part of the conversation and feedback on what has changed

Working with Involvement Partners

An Involvement Partner is a person who has received support from Nottinghamshire Healthcare (or cared for someone who has) and brings this experience to help us to improve services. 

You might have previously heard the name ‘Involvement Volunteer’ but we revised this in 2021 to better reflect this role and to distinguish Involvement Partners from Volunteers who have a distinct status and are recruited and supported in a different way.

There are lots of opportunities for Involvement Partners to get involved, such as:

  • Helping to design new hospitals, wards and services
  • Interviewing new staff with us
  • Improvement and Quality Improvement projects
  • Helping us to plan for the future care that will be provided by our services
  • Tackling local health and social care related problems – such as loneliness, intervening early to prevent hospital admissions, and care in the community
  • Sharing their story to give hope to others, or to enhance staff training

The Involvement, Experience and Volunteering Team will help you to consider who needs to be involved in the collaborative work you’re doing, how they can be reached and engaged, and the support they will need to contribute fully, in whatever project they’re involved with or role they’re undertaking.

Resources to support you in working with Involvement Partners

We have created a Quick Guide for staff (below) which is a good place to start if you want to recruit Involvement Partners to a project or role you have within your services:

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