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1.1.4.a Child Friendly Service User Involvement Policy

SCOPE OF THIS CHAPTER

This chapter is written for children and young people and details why service users should become involved in participating in the development of services, how this can be achieved and what sort of support they should expect to help them to do this.

AMENDMENT

This chapter was included in the manual in September 2014 and replaced the previous version in entirety.


Contents

  1. Service User Involvement Policy
  2. Who Does this Affect?
  3. How Can I get Involved and get my Opinion Heard?
  4. Will I get Training?
  5. Will I get Paid for my Involvement?
  6. Useful Links


1. Service User Involvement Policy

Wirral Children and Young People’s Department (CYPD) rely on young people’s involvement to improve and develop our services. We do this by carrying out regular reviews and asking those who use the service for suggestions to make it better. We listen to your views to find new ways of delivering services, creating new ones and making sure we include everyone who the service is for.

Services are more likely to be useful if they are based on the experience, needs and wishes of their users. By being involved in the development of your services you can expect a high standard as you have contributed to making it a success.

We will support you to talk to someone independent if you have a problem that cannot be resolved with the person concerned. We will also make sure you are aware of how to make a complaint.


2. Who Does this Affect?

Young people who are service users may be someone who:


3. How Can I get Involved and get my Opinion Heard?

These are some of the ways we can make sure you are involved:

  • Drop in sessions – will be held at least four times a year and hosted by social care staff;
  • Focus Groups – a yearly focus group run by a member of staff not involved in delivering the service will take place to discuss how the service is delivered and how it can be improved. Focus groups will also be held before any new project is approved;
  • Children in Care Council (CICC) – all young people are invited to join the CICC to take part in decision making, evaluation, planning and delivery of services;
  • Newsletter – a newsletter will be made available at least twice a year letting young people know what is going on;
  • Recruitment / Selection / Interview Panels – young people will be involved in all recruitment of staff as well as reviewing job descriptions;
  • Questionnaires – will give young people the chance to raise issues of concern;
  • Feedback – young people can make confidential and anonymous comments on the service;
  • Complaints – young people in care will be given a copy of the Complaints leaflet and made aware of their rights;
  • Exit Interviews – experience will be sought;
  • Opportunities – paid and voluntary roles within Wirral Social Care services will be published online;
  • Conference – all young people, partners and staff will have the chance to go to consultation events to have their say;
  • LAC Reviews – all service users will have the chance to attend their review meetings to look at their care plan and share their views.


4. Will I get Training?

Wirral CYPD is committed to ensuring that young people and staff have the right training in order to work together successfully.

Young people who are involved in the development of services will get the following training:

  • Introduction to service user involvement - what it involves, what is expected, the benefits of involvement;
  • Participating in meetings - format and protocol or round table meetings, chairing;
  • Influencing / negotiation skills - assertiveness, confidence building, effective communication;
  • Interviewing skills (including equal opportunities) and presentation skills.


5. Will I get Paid for my Involvement?

Any expenses will be agreed before carrying out any duties. Travel expenses will always be paid, for example you may be provided with a Saveaway ticket or reimbursed in cash on the day wherever possible. You will be asked to sign the Service User Payment form to keep a record of any payments.

Any extra costs such as childcare, use of personal assistant or facilitator or specific transport based on additional needs will be agreed before any activity.

If you are getting benefits it is your responsibility for letting the Department for Work and Pensions know of any work you are doing to make sure it meets the Permitted Work rules.


6. Useful Links

End