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Our April Newsletter is out!

Local Area Coordination in England and Wales

April 2023

Updates on Local Area Coordination, the work of the Network and
the areas implementing the approach.

In this edition we’ll be covering:

  • Hello and welcome
  • PublicationsGreen circle reading 'news'
  • Video series
  • Vacancies
  • Events
  • Blogs

Read all about it here!

A note from from Tom Richards,
Local Area Coordination Network Manager

Hello and welcome to this very special Local Area Coordination Network Newsletter!

Why is it special I hear you ask? Because last week was the biggest week of the year – Local Area Coordination Week! And what a week it was. We had a jam-packed series of celebrations, events, research projects and lots of comms spreading the word about Local Area Coordination.

On Monday, we kickstarted the week by launching our new monthly series of online ‘Let’s Talk Practice’ events, bringing together people from across the Network to share different perspectives on a scenario that Local Area Coordinators may encounter in their work.

On Tuesday, researchers from Sheffield and Hull Universities met with Network members to learn more about establishing intentional relationships with healthy boundaries, the challenges that arise from ‘finding and fixing problems’ rather than supporting people to build on their existing capacities and strengths, and building relationships within marginalised communities.

On Wednesday, we looked back at the eight video stories published over the last eight weeks, which shared people’s journeys alongside a Local Area Coordinator, told in their voice, in their way. Read more on this later in the newsletter.

On Thursday, we held a ‘State of the Network’ event (like state of the nation but for Local Area Coordination!), where we launched our three-year strategic plan for the Network, called ‘Connect, Learn and Grow’. We also had the pleasure of hearing presentations from five speakers from five different areas in the Network: Anna Christie from Leicestershire County Council who talked about her experience at the recent Social Care Future roundtable event on Home First; Dan Shurlock from Surrey County Council who talked about their experience of designing, implementing and growing Local Area Coordination over the past three years; Dave Oliffe from Derby City Council who talked about the history and future of Safe Waiting – one of our core concepts in Local Area Coordination practice; Beth McGregor who talked about her learning journey since becoming a Local Area Coordinator, and the importance of practitioners committing to lifelong learning and reflective practice; and finally, Joe Micheli, who talked about the pressures councils, the service system and communities face, the opportunities ahead of us, the common beliefs we share as a Network, and the hope we hold for the future.

And this week we are delighted to help launch a groundbreaking new study which looks at the science of relationships in Local Area Coordination, led by researchers at Swansea University, with Local Area Coordinators at Swansea Council, the wonderful people they are alongside, and the wider Local Area Coordination Network. Huge well done to everyone involved. The findings are incredible and full of lessons that are totally applicable to anyone working with people, families and whole communities! Read more about the study results here.

It’s been a busy few weeks but also hugely motivating, seeing the even greater buzz of activity, energy and enthusiasm within the Network.

Enjoy the newsletter!

Tom Richards