We are working with young people and partners across Bromley to co-produce improvements to emotional and mental wellbeing for children and young people in Bromley. We are doing this because we cannot continue as we are. We need a robust and sustainable system of support and treatment that improves the emotional wellbeing and mental health of the population as a whole and provides evidence based services.
The focus is on improving the emotional and mental wellbeing of children and young people. However, the learning from this co-productive process will also be integrated into other programmes of work and the engagement we do with local people in Bromley.
Co-Production is an approach that ensures both people delivering and planning services and those using them are equal partners in the design, delivery and review of services. It recognises that all parties have vital contributions to make to improve the quality of life for people and communities.
In January, we published the new Service Specification for Emotional and Mental Wellbeing services, for Children and Young People in Bromley.
This has been produced as part of our co-production approach to improve emotional and mental wellbeing for children and young people. We are really ambitious for children and young people in Bromley. We want to work with innovative people and organisations who are equally ambitious and passionate about children and young people’s wellbeing. We want all children and young people across the borough to reach their full potential and to grow to be confident young adults and parents themselves.
Our objectives for children and young people in Bromley are that they:
These objectives will drive all the developments and measures of success for these services. They mean we have a strong focus on prevention, early intervention and support based in the community. Where children and young people need more help, we need to ensure it is right for them with minimal waiting times and in places that they find welcoming. And lastly, we are embedding, in all we do and commission, the role young people play in their own wellbeing and that of their friends and family.
In 2016, we commissioned the New Economics Foundation (NEF) to test out a co-production approach to improve emotional wellbeing services for children and young people in Bromley. We wanted to get a better understanding of young people and the appetite of local organisations to commit to delivering services that would meet these needs. Read the NEF Outcomes Report.
In October 2017 we launched a year-long co-production programme to test out the outcomes of the earlier work and come up with a model of service delivery for emotional and mental wellbeing for children and young people that will meet their needs and which is designed and produced by young people, citizens and statutory organisations. We already knew from the NEF work that young people want more focus on support and early intervention to reduce the risk of them going into crisis and needing more intensive support. We reached children and young people through holding sessions at a number of schools, after school clubs, community groups, a group for children with communication difficulties, those with special educations needs and disabilities, looked after children and young carers. A survey was also sent out to schools and across the community in Bromley to ask young people about their emotional wellbeing. Almost 1,500 young people responded, you can read the analysis notes of the survey here. Feedback from all this direct work with young people mirrored the earlier NEF findings, which strengthened the case for a focus on early intervention. We collect equalities data for all engagement and for this programme of work the data collected through the survey has helped us tailor our engagement to hold events in more deprived areas of the community so we could reach more families and young people who are seldom heard.
In January 2018, a stakeholder event involving system leaders, service providers, community groups and faith groups was held to discuss the programme, consider how outcomes could be delivered and get a system wide commitment to co-production. This was followed by three ‘community meetings’ involving the public, stakeholders and young people to further test wellbeing outcomes and consider models of care to deliver these outcomes.
Our next step was to ensure that we had a system in place to deliver the outcomes identified by young people by co-producing a service specification. We have gone back out to the schools and groups we spoke to when developing the outcomes to let them know how the work was progressing. We have also produced update bulletins with everyone who has been involved.
The development of the service specification has been informed by young people and partners. Since August 2018 we have engaged (face to face) with almost 200 people in Bromley. Focus groups and discussions centred on the design of the service specification and what should be included. Children that felt most comfortable expressed their thoughts by drawing; some drew pictures of an ideal setting for treatment. Games were used to encourage younger children to share thoughts about what the best service could look like. Other visits informed charities and voluntary sector organisations of the work we are doing and we gathered their input on behalf of the children and young people they support and interact with. Young people will continue to have a say as the service takes shape through our co-delivery approach.
We have recruited two Young Commissioners to be involved in the co-delivery of the improved services.
We keep in touch regularly with all of the people we have engaged with (including schools) to provide regular updates and feedback on how their input has made a difference and ensure that what they have suggested for the new service can be included in the new contract. If suggestions are unable to be included, we always explain why.
In May 2018 we held a SEND Employability Day. The SEND Reforms refers to the ‘golden thread’ which runs through all our strategies, plans and processes for children and young people which will enable improved outcomes for children and young people with special educational needs and/or disabilities (SEND). The ‘golden thread’ is about : aspirations, needs, outcomes and provision. The Employability Day came out of co-production work undertaken to inform Bromley’s commissioning intentions for their mental health Transformation Programme and was driven by the local ‘Working Together for Employment Group’. This underlines how by working together with a range of partners, i.e. colleges, health providers, clinicians and others, we can inspire our young people with SEND along pathways to employment to achieve to the best of their potential. The outcomes of the day have fed into work on emotional and mental wellbeing.
To find out more about the programme or get involved in the forums, please email firstname.lastname@example.org
Co-Production Bulletin - Issue 1 – May 2018
Co-Production Bulletin - Issue 2 – July 2018