Making waves at Shropshire Council with direct payment holders

You may or may not know that Shropshire Council have had a Making it Real board for quite a number of years, and have signed up wholeheartedly to using the updated version of Making it Real.

Recently Kate, Clenton and myself ran a session at their annual co-production summit (yes, some areas do take co-production that seriously they hold a summit!)  (especially after running some slightly wacky activities involving the contents of my kids’ craft box from home).

At the end of it the AD for social care – Tanya Miles was buzzing; she was really keen to engage us in a further session as soon as possible (and had the budget to fund it!). I was amazed how swiftly she mobilised people, including those who manage their own direct payments, team managers, the DIRECTOR of social care and finance people.

Armed with pinboards, coloured cards and pens we explored the current experience of direct payments with those present, talked a bit about pirates (think I may need to do a follow up blog on the pirate issue) and we left them all fired up to work with us to plan two bigger events in the autumn to explore how they can cause some ‘good trouble’, and co-create the right conditions and culture to ‘re-humanise’ peoples experience of interacting with social care!

Just to give you a taster – one of the fab ladies who manages her own DP shared her recent job advert with us…

Cranky old bag needs thick skinned and empathetic, humorous female to join existing stalwart team to support "life as I know it".

Gorgeous dog also part of the team.

Pays well for only seven to eight 24 hr shifts/month (Ave 42hrs/week) and if you've been good you're allowed to go to bed at night.

Needs a driver, someone over 5'4 and physically fit. Would suit someone who has experience of 24 hour shifts.

The criteria are non-negotiable, designed to reduced wasted time and derived from prior experience.

Interestingly the response rate to the ad was much higher than previous more sensible versions… Think you can see where this is heading… Kate, Clenton and myself are certainly very curious to find out!

The upshot is that members of the National Co-production Advisory Group, along with myself went and facilitated a creative and constructive session and came away with a further invitation to co-design with them some bigger events in the autumn.

Their mission is to co-create a new vision for social care (including DPs) in which they create the right conditions and culture, and one that is not solely focussed on systems and processes!


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