In the social care world, there’s a movement towards encouraging and empowering people and communities to care for themselves and each other. Personal care budgets – that allow service users to choose and pay for the services that best suit their needs – is one element of that. What is often found, though, is that local and community-based initiatives can be far better at “looking after their own” than the ‘block services’ that local authorities and health services deliver.
These locally-delivered services often access previously untapped skills, knowledge and experience from the community, resulting in services being delivered by enthusiastic, community-minded people. This sense of inclusion in their community can dramatically improve service user’s quality of life, health and wellbeing, and independence.
A community of people who interact, trust and look after each other has what is known as “social capital” – and this is more and more being seen as a hugely valuable resource in the delivery of social care.
Mindings, at its core is all about nurturing social connection:
- We help grandmothers see daily pictures of their grandchildren who live so far away and rarely visit.
- We help sons and daughters set up daily schedules and reminders to help their parents live independently.
- We help granddads be included in the social media loop, without having to learn how to use a computer.
- And, we’re working on a new concept “Virtual Befriending” in which we can gather a varied group of befrienders and help them share pictures and messages with people who have no family, friends or community – using Mindings as a digital social hub.
On the Disruptive Social Care Podcast that I present with social care advocate Shirley Ayres, our guest Dominic Campbell, founder of FutureGov, discusses austerity-led innovation, social capital and why he looks towards innovations like Mindings for interesting takes on social capital.
The “Kent Care in the Digital Age” conference in Sittingbourne, Kent on July 12th brought together 150 staff, volunteers, service users, carers, innovators and care providers from across the country to explore how digital technology can enhance community care and support.
The event was created by “Connected Care Network“, an organisation formed by combining the considerable talents of social care advocate (and co-host of the Disruptive Social Care Podcast, with Mindings‘ Stuart Arnott) Shirley Ayres, and communications consultant and designer James Souttar.Read More
Mindings Stuart Arnott has been a guest of Kent County Council for the last two days at social care events.
On Thursday 28th, Howfield Manor Hotel in Chartham Hatch, Canterbury hosted “Reablement (Intermediate Care) Conference for East Kent”, with Mindings being demonstrated as a social tool for early-stage dementia care.
On Friday 29th Stuart was invited by James Lampert, Commissioning Manager, Families and Social Care Directorate at Kent County Council to be a keynote speaker at “Kent County Council Families and Social Care Community Prevention Conference” in Lenham, Maidstone.
James is a Commissioning Manager at Kent County Council with a professional background in rehabilitation and a passion for improving health and social care services. His current portfolio includes long term conditions, end of life care, falls and has a strategic lead for integrated commissioning.
A terrific programme included presentations by Jon Glasby, Professor of Health and Social Care and Director of Health Services Management Centre at Birmingham University, Caroline Hallett from Big Society Co-operative, and Mike Jenn, from Camden Town Shed, talking about the wonderful Mens Shed movement, which originated in Australia. Men’s Sheds usually offer a workshop, tools and equipment so men in later life can use existing skills, learn new ones and be productive while enjoying the benefits of working in a social group.
Stuart was presenting the concept of creating a “virtual community” to develop meaningful relationships with Mindings users who may not have a community of family or friends. Some great new features are being developed to help in this endeavour, and some exciting relationships are being forged to trial Mindings in care settings with these virtual communities.
Watch this space!
The Mindings TeamRead More
Mark is a director of Social Spider a community interest company helping people make change happen. He tweets as @markoneinfour and he has been described as one of the smartest thinkers in the worlds of social media and mental health.
Mark edits One in Four, England’s only national mental health and wellbeing magazine written by people who experience mental health difficulties, and he was shortlisted for the Mind Champion award 2010.
After the recording of the show Mark discussed why he was impressed by Mindings.
Watch the full interview this Friday 19 October on the Disruptive Social Care YouTube Channel.
The Mindings TeamRead More
(Mindings) is a classic example rising out of the public, not out of the service side, and intrinsically that’s going to be more interesting.
If you think that every household in Britain over the last ten years has spent £300 on phones, broadband, PCs, you get to £75 billion. That infrastructure is much bigger than the £10 billion that the NHS spent on not getting “Connecting for Health” over the same decade, and you just suddenly realise why Mindings, and things coming-out of that £75 billion are likely to be more disruptive than black boxes coming of of the £10 billion, it just stands to reason.
It’ll not always be true, obviously always be good things coming out of the NHS, but if you were to place your bets, I’d place them on Mindings…
Follow Paul Hodgkin on Twitter.
The Disruptive Social Care Podcast is a provocative fortnightly discussion programme promoting innovation in social care. The show is hosted by seasoned social care advocate and social media maven Shirley Ayres, and entrepreneur and multimedia producer Stuart Arnott. Guests regularly feature from the worlds of social care and technology innovation.Read More