Second learning exchange takes place between CLAHRCs

Members of the public involvement teams of CLAHRC South West Peninsula (PenCLAHRC) and CLAHRC NWC met up to share their latest innovation and ideas in Lancaster and build on the relationship that started in 2015.
Public and patient involvement has been central to how PenCLAHRC operates, which is why it was one of the first CLAHRCs to establish a ‘purpose-built’ PPI forum – the Peninsula Patient and Public Involvement Group (PenPIG). PenPIG members travelled North to mirror a visit that happened last year when theme managers, public advisers and public involvement leads from CLAHRC NWC visited their offices in Exeter.
The latest exchange visit offered opportunities to discuss how the CLAHRC NWC public reference panel had developed since the first visit, share updates from the respective teams and continue to build relationships and share learning around public engagement.
Professor Mark Gabbay, Director of CLAHRC NWC, welcomed the group and outlined the importance of public involvement to the work of the NWC collaboration, flagging up examples of how this had been working in practice. All of the visitors were inducted as honorary members to the Public Reference Panel and learned the public engagement values of the NWC collaboration and the way public advisers are embedded in to the governance of the collaboration at every level.
A Q&A session was held with Directors of CLAHRC NWC during which the uniqueness of the NWC collaboration was discussed, including the focus on health inequalities, the broader determinants of health and the close working relationship established with local authorities and NWC neighbourhoods.
Managers from each CLAHRC NWC theme gave a short five minute overview their theme and how public engagement and involvement has been embedded with practical examples. This included a photograph competition for communities to develop their own unique community calendars, the public facing  'have your say'  events and collaborations with charities to involve and engage the public with our research. 
Jenny Irvine, Public Engagement Facilitator for CLAHRC NWC, said: “This has been a fantastic exchange. I think both sides have really benefited from spending time together, learning and experiencing a different public engagement model first-hand. This exchange has given us a unique opportunity to gain information and develop peer support relationships that wouldn't have been available to us from working in any other way. I really look forward to seeing how the relationship develops.
It was then time to try out the public engagement tools which the CLAHRC NWC have developed including a large snakes and ladders game, health inequalities board game, health inequalities quiz and opinion tree.
Diana Frost, who has been a PenPIG member since 2014, said: “The North West Coast has a lot of poverty, and so does Devon. We have health inequalities in rural areas due to the cost of property for example, isolation of elderly and an increase in food banks. Learning about the work going on here, especially in relation to the Neighbourhoods for Learning work has been particularly interesting and something I will be taking back for us to consider.“  

More articles     Posted on: 31 October 2016