National health system partner organisations came together to bring integrated volunteering approaches to life

31st January 2020

Wave 2 event

OVER a hundred delegates from the Integrated Care Systems (ICSs) and Sustainability and Transformation Partnerships (STPs) came to the Helpforce organised “Integrated Approaches to Volunteering” events in January, working together to identify where volunteering can best support their local priorities.

The events, which took place in London and Leeds, were co-organised by Helpforce and NHS England and NHS Improvement.

The days were packed with informative and engaging sessions, where attendees shared how they integrate volunteering to better meet the needs of their communities and learned how to develop a leadership case for volunteering, to win the support of system leaders and stakeholders.

Wave 2 event

Paddy Hanrahan, Director of Strategy at Helpforce, said: “As part of our work with NHS England and NHS Improvement to deliver the three-year programme “Integrated Volunteering approaches in the STP and ICS”, we organised these events to bring everyone together and share ideas around how volunteering can help with integration. We heard some fantastic examples of where volunteers are contributing across multiple public sector organisations to bring communities and health services together.

“Our special thanks to presenters from the charity Altogether Better and the Lancashire Volunteer Partnership for coming to the events and for sharing their insights in bringing health services and local people together to improve the communities’ health and wellbeing.”

Jane Fox, Voluntary Partnerships Senior Manager at NHS England and NHS Improvement, added: “It was wonderful to be at both events and to see how inspired everyone is to develop integrated volunteering approaches.

“We truly believe that when we all work together, we will achieve the NHS’s Long Term plan, which is to support integrated care, tackle health inequalities and support public health ambitions, and with the support of volunteering, we know we’ll get closer to our goals.”

Jules Alderson, STP volunteering project manager at Norfolk and Waveney Health and Care Partnership, who attended the event in London, said: “I found the day very useful, it was a really good opportunity to reflect on the possibilities for our STP.

“I most enjoyed the presentation about collaborative practice, it was really inspiring to hear a success story from the perspective of the representatives within Primary Care. It was an excellent reminder of why volunteering and community engagement is so important and can make such a difference.

“Primary Care volunteering is an area that we have looked at already in Norfolk but not been completely successful with, so looking at how the approach can work renewed our enthusiasm to look at it again.”

If you are a voluntary sector organisation and would like to engage with the STPs and ICSs about this programme, you can join the Helpforce Network .

To learn more about the programme that we are working on with NHS England and NHS Improvement, please visit this link.