Equinox Personalisation Strategy – now published

Posted by on 7 November 2012 | 0 Comments


We’re very proud to announce the publication of the Equinox Personalisation Strategy.

The thorough development process for the Equinox Personalisation Strategy, which commenced in June 2011, involved Equinox service users, family members, carers, staff and trustees.The process included: a learning and ideas event attended by 86 people; a call for ideas from which over 200 suggestions came; focus groups in which 36 core ideas were prioritised; a detailed analysis phase; and finally a decision-making workshop to arrive at the final strategic decisions.

Eight high level decisions which make up the Equinox Personalisation Strategy were reached.

1. Equinox will offer service users more options when creating their support plans
2. Equinox will ensure a good balance between service users and staff in agreeing support and treatment plans, a balance that will change as the service user makes progress.
3. Equinox will help service users to enjoy life more.
4. Equinox’s service users will have a real say over the resources of the organisation.
5. Equinox will push commissioners and other providers to create a much more seamless arrangement of services across providers, centred on the needs of individuals rather than groups.
6. Equinox will build on the work of the Service User Involvement Strategy to develop new roles for service users to influence the organisation.
7. Equinox will take steps to make the most of the skills of its service users.
8. Equinox will encourage and support service users to influence the world around them.

These decisions will be implemented across the organisation from now until the end of 2015 – including innovations in the areas of support and treatment plans, even better partnership working for the benefit of service users, increased opportunities for service users to be involved in training, decision-making, recruitment and seeking employment, and much more besides.

At the heart of Equinox’s Personalisation Strategy is the commitment to give Equinox service users more voice, choice and control over the support they receive, their lives, Equinox and over the wider environment – building on the great work and learnings from the Equinox Service User Involvement Strategy.

Director of Operations, Sharon Bye, explains the link between Equinox's Personalisation Strategy and the Service User Involvement Strategy:

“Service user involvement is about people who use services having a say in how those services are run” (Taking Down Barriers: 2009)

"The Equinox Service User Involvement Strategy sought to enable service users to have a voice at three levels," Sharon says, "individual, service and organisation wide. Immense progress has been made in some areas and service users now influence the development and delivery of services and the organisation as a whole. Our current Corporate Plans states a commitment for Equinox to become a service user “driven” organisation. That is a significant step forward from our starting point on the journey of service user involvement.

"At an individual level we sought to ensure that we implemented a person centred approach to support. This requires us to take account of the wishes and aspirations of service users within the support planning process. The advent of a personalisation agenda introduced a challenge – it required us to consider how to give service users more choice, voice and control overall.

"Our Personalisation Strategy builds upon, rather than replaces the Service User Involvement Strategy. It is the learning from one that has influenced the other. The fact that we asked rather than assumed what service users would like in terms of involvement, ensured that we had a vibrant and relevant strategy, That in turn helped us to embrace personalisation in a honest way – not everyone who uses Equinox services will qualify for a personal budget to spend how they wish. We were able to work with this reality whilst also embracing the principles of personalisation. Together with carers and service users we thought about how we could give those who receive our services, more choice, voice and control at every level. What has transpired is a strategy that promises to both challenge us and to ensure that we realise our aim of becoming service user driven. In 2013, we will develop a new Service User Involvement Strategy – this time we expect the new strategy to reflect and be influenced by the commitments we have made in relation to personalisation.

"Sometimes the journey is as important as the destination: service user involvement and personalisation give us a route map on that road. We are proud of what has been achieved to date and are excited about the journey ahead!"

The Equinox Personalisation Strategy has been formulated as a result of a project undertaken by Equinox with the help of the National Council of Voluntary Organisations (NCVO) and Community Catalysts.Watch this space for news of how Equinox is implementing personalisation right across our services.Click to read more about Personalisation at Equinox.

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