Festival to celebrate Oxfordshire's pioneering partnership working

Oxfordshire is leading the way when it comes to partnership working and helping to deliver better outcomes for people in the community.

And those partnerships will be celebrated at the county’s first-ever Co-production Festival in Oxford this coming Tuesday.

Co-production means involving the people that matter in the design of services and decisions that affect them, working together as equal partners to find ways of doing things to benefit the community.

That’s all part of Oxfordshire County Council’s commitment to thriving communities. We help people live safe, healthy lives and play an active part in their community.

The county council started working with The Social Care Institute for Excellence (SCIE) on co-production two years ago and is now recognised as a national leader.

The recent Local Government Association Peer Review found the county council’s innovative working was impressive and something for other authorities to emulate.

There are currently 16 projects ongoing across the county. These include:

Grants Panels

Service users and carers sat alongside county councillors and officers to help make decisions about funding to charities and community groups.

They decided on grants from the Innovation Fund, which rewards innovative projects for daytime support for people over 18, and the Sustainability Fund, which provides funding to community and voluntary sector daytime support opportunities.

One of the Co-production Board members to help in the decision-making process was Ben McCay, co-chair of the charity My Life My Choice.

He felt his experience as a service user provided valuable insight and enjoyed being a part of the team. “It was a rigorous process and quite tiring going through so much paperwork. One of the recommendations we made was that next time applications should be put together electronically.

“On the Sustainability Fund panel they thought I was quite ruthless in making some of the decisions. By the time we had finished giving out all the money to the groups we wanted we still had some left over, so I made them go back to the start and look again at the groups we hadn’t given money to. In the end everyone got something.”

Older People’s Strategy

Nearly 600 people were involved in the co-production of the Older People’s Strategy, which sets out how the county council and Oxfordshire Clinical Commissioning Group will work together to deliver a positive future for the county’s older population.

Members of the public, patients, service users and their families and carers, voluntary organisations and local councillors all gave their views through events and a survey to help identify the strategy’s vision and priorities.

Moving into Adulthood

This project was co-produced with 108 people including young people with disabilities, their families, front line staff and other stakeholders.

It looked at the problems faced by young people with disabilities who are moving from children’s to adult’s services. The group made a recommendation to the county council to make a single transition team, which is now being developed.

Building a bridge to Co-production

The festival at The King’s Centre in Osney Mead marks Oxfordshire’s contribution to SCIE's National Co-production Week and will feature speakers, activities and workshops.

Participants can enjoy an African dance and drumming workshop, take a virtual dementia tour and help build a graffiti wall.

Those attending will include people working in health and social care: people using services and their families, co-production practitioners, professionals from statutory organisations, and the voluntary and community sector.