The Network North Challenge Group on Leading Sheffield Cohort 2 contained health and care staff with a wide range of roles and responsibilities from the following organisations: Manor & Castle Development Trust, Sheffield City Council, Sheffield Children’s, Sheffield Clinical Commissioning Group, Sheffield Health and Social Care, Sheffield Teaching Hospital and South Yorkshire Police.
The Challenge Group were asked to identify a health challenge that is important to Network North and answer the following question:
How will you, as a group, agree to work differently together, and influence others in the neighbourhood (or more widely) to work differently to:
- Improve patient/service user support, experience and outcomes
- Reduce the prevalence of this health condition in Network North?
They were allocated a coach who was a previous participant on Cohort 1 of Leading Sheffield to facilitate the discussion.
We heard from 2 people from the Network North Challenge Group who shared their experience of the process of Leading Sheffield:
What approach did you take to understanding the health challenges of Network North? – Did you collect any data from the community, how did you analyse any information you had?
“There was a good spread of colleagues from across all sectors in the group and most had worked in the North of the City or were aware of issues in their area. They looked at various pieces of information online and gathered a few thoughts from each member of the group about where the focus should be before making a decision. They wanted it to be around an issue that crossed the boundaries of health, social services/local authority, police and voluntary sector.”Participant 1
“The group identified the problem and gathered data from across the city.
The group focussed on a case study from a service user from Manor and Castle area who had mental ill health and part of his problem manifested as hoarding.
Data was collected from city wide information, as hoarding had been something that each service had experienced and this was a common theme.”Participant 2
How did the conversations go in your Challenge Groups when deciding the health challenge? – Were this easy or difficult and why?
“The conversations were easy, insightful and respectful. It felt like we were all listened to and the decision we came to was unanimous and without challenge. The whole group worked really well together and respected each other’s point of view. There was a real team effort and everyone contributed to the discussions and subsequent actions that we had to carry out to deliver the presentation.”Participant 1
“Initially identifying the health challenge was difficult as the group were from different areas of the city and some members were not clear about what was needed to support the city’s residents, this was described as frustrating.
The initial theme was impact of mental ill health and the hoarding discussion came from having access to a service user willing to tell their story. Follow on conversations identified how each member of the group/individual services had previous contact with hoarders, with both positive and negative outcomes. Identified barriers included commitment of time by service, lack of resource or poor communication, sharing of information by individual service providers”Participant 2
Why did you choose hoarding as a health challenge to focus on for Network North? Can you provide any information e.g. statistics, quotes you used to support this decision?
“We had a really good spread of colleagues across health, local authority, police and voluntary sector. Hoarding was one of the common themes that kept cropping up during the conversations and most of the members of the group had dealt with this from different perspectives, therefore it was decided to focus on the issue.
A few members of the group had access to data relating to hoarding which we analysed as part of our decision making process. One member of the group had first-hand experience of supporting a member of the community with a hoarding issue and had worked with him through his journey, helping to access the appropriate support. We therefore had a live case study to help us to understand the issues and were given permission to use his voice in our presentation. We also collected data on hoarding, had a visit from a charity who helped hoarders and began to understand about the condition and how it helped those with it.”Participant 1
“Hoarding was chosen because mental health, the initial challenge themed question, was too broad. They identified a case study of a real persons’ experience and the person talked about hoarding as one of the outcomes of mental ill health, it led to the groups conversation identifying a common theme to link them all together.
Data to support the challenge question included:
– a fire in properties lead to fire service call outs
– anti-social behaviour reports leading to police call outs
– falls leading to hospital admissions
– no access to properties requiring repairs
Ultimately the individuals were getting stuck in the system or not know to services which leads to individual having a poor quality of life/not reaching their potential and adding to a local economy/local community/neighbourhoods instead of being a drain on resources.”Participant 2
- Challenge Group members are feeding into a recently created cross-city steering group on hoarding. This group has helped secure 5 years of funding from the National Lottery for Magpies – a hoarding group led by Sheffield Mind.
- Strengthening the link between South City Council and South Yorkshire Police in tackling hoarding.
- Highlighting the difference made by local organisations working with individuals, one Challenge Group member is currently working as a patient-advocacy worker part time.
Reflections from Challenge Group members:
- “I found the whole experience very positive. The initial 2 days (before we broke into our groups) were excellent but slightly confusing – perhaps because I wasn’t quite sure what the programme was about and so I would advise participants to be patient with the process and also to trust in the process. When it all did become clear – probably towards the end of the second day, it became even more enjoyable.”
- “It definitely helped that we were part of such a lovely group – it was great to make connections and to have a better understanding of what and how others are doing across the city. The format of the presentations was clever – by encouraging us to be creative it allowed us all to approach the task very differently to how we might of otherwise.”
- “It was a great opportunity to meet colleagues from across the City and make connections and build networks. I’ve not yet had the need to contact anyone in our group for advice or help, but I know they are all there if I need them! It was also good to do something creative in our presentation in a safe environment and without any boundaries as such. It was a fantastic experience with lovely people, and would definitely recommend it to other colleagues if they have the time as it does need a certain level of commitment”
- “For me I would be telling everyone that no matter how big or small they think there contribution is, nothing works unless we help and support each other in our roles. I wasn’t sure what I could offer but it soon became apparent that we all needed each other’s help.”