As part of the South West London Alliance we have been undertaking a grassroots outreach engagement programme, funded by NHS England, to reach out to seldom heard communities. Funding was provided to local grassroots organisations to run events for their populations, to listen to views on local health issues. The funding was allocated via local healthwatch organisations that promoted the opportunity, evaluated the bids and administered the funding.
In addition, OPM Group was commissioned to design, facilitate and report on six open access health and care forums, one in each of the six south west London Boroughs.
In Richmond this programme has enhanced our existing community engagement. During 2016/17 we participated in 18 events with local organisations, had in-depth conversations with over 379 individuals and reached over 888 people – the majority of whom would not have previously engaged with the NHS.
A summary of the feedback from this engagement is available in two reports:
- By the following work streams: seven day acute services and urgent & emergency care; more care closer to home; prevention and early intervention; mental health services; learning disabilities; children’s services; maternity services; cancer; planned care.
- By local CCG areas.
Evaluating the 2016/17 programme
The 2016/17 grassroots programme was independently evaluated to assess the success of the engagement approach.
The evaluation report provides background information, details of the process and some lessons learned to inform future engagement with communities across south west London.