A new start...

I’ve just been taking some time to reflect on my first week as a Programme Coordinator with Co:Create and the more I think about it, the more excited I am to be part of this team. I’ve had a pretty varied work history (support worker, nightclub cleaner, camera technician!?) and while there have been plenty of jobs which I’ve enjoyed, and some I’ve felt a strong personal connection with, this is the first one where I feel wholeheartedly connected with the job spec and the work we have ahead of us. I worked with social care commissioners for over 3 years and the challenges which they are increasingly faced with are inconceivably vast.

I really believe that it will be impossible for health and social care to move forwards if commissioners can’t respond directly to the needs of the people who access services. But how are they meant to get to those people? The average commissioner is so consumed with fire-fighting the immediate problems with existing, dangerously stretched services. All this whilst being tied up with the red tape surrounding commercial contracting. It simply isn’t feasible for them to work as closely with their current and future client-base as they need to. Unlocking that connection and breaking down some of the barriers to really working with people in an open, constructive way has got to be the key to making services efficient and responsive enough to work and to last.

I’ve often thought when working with commissioners just how much more they could achieve with some genuine support, a bit of time to think and someone to help them talk to their customers. So to have the opportunity to be part of this dynamic team, using creative, forward-thinking ideas to give commissioners some headspace and connect the human stories to the strategy is an unbelievably exciting prospect. I can’t wait to get stuck in!

Chris Hewitt - Co:Create Programme Co-ordinator

Emma Ward