It’s been a little while since I’ve posted one of my “world famous” resilience round-ups, so just in case you were all in need of a fix, here’s a few examples that I’ve come across which demonstrate the advantages of taking a resilience approach as an individual, a community or a public service. Oh and since moving to my new role, I’ve tried to give this a bit of a south London flavour as well.
So my new employer won an award last week. Which is great, but the really important thing is what they won it for, a project called Without Walls, which supports adults with learning disabilities. I love this project. As it says on the “tin” this is a project that takes adults with learning difficulties outside of the daycare setting and places them in more day to day/community settings to better understand what conditions improve their wellbeing. Not only does this take a great assets-based approach to working with this group, by being out and about in the community they’ve created a space for more bridging opportunities to help tackle the fear that many communities can have of this cohort. Do click on the link above and read about the great case studies and impact they’ve had.
Southwark Smart Saver Scheme (link)
This is the kind of thing that really challenges the role and remit of public services in strengthening people’s resilience. The Smart Saver Scheme involves providing young peple in Southwark who turn 11 years old between 1 September 2013 and 31 August 2015, with a Credit Mutual account and £10 to start that account. “What’s £10?” I hear some of you say. Well it may not be much, but investing in young people’s financial inclusion and encouraging familiarisation with these sorts of products can have a massive impact on future opportunities and there has been research to suggest that even having a small amount of savings can influence the aspirations of young people at key decision making stages. And as an infrastructure to build on for other resilience investment initiatives (maybe even networks of young savers?) this is a tremendous start.
A bit further afield now, but this caught my eye following numerous conversations about things like defibrillators in community settings. This app allows people who have been trained up in CPR to be directed to cardiac arrest emergencies. Very much in the research stage, early indications are that amongst the test group survival rates are almost doubled through the early intervention. This is another interesting example where technology can actively make a connection between someone who can help and someone who needs help, and the researchers themselves have been challenging whether mass training campaigns are too passive and that to make this sort of community intervention effective, you need to be actively brokering connections. I’d keep an eye on this one for the learning as much as the impact.
You know, I can’t tell you the amount of times I’ve heard people put forward the idea of merging children’s centres and daycare centres (or variations of the young people/old people building based services). Most of the time this comes from a cost benefit point of view and about using building space more efficiently. What I love about this example in Seattle (which the article expands upon) is the much richer brokering and exchange of strengths that goes on between young people and older people when brought into the same space, and how both sets of people go into “sharing” mode – rather than being passive recipients of a service. Check out the video in the link – both fascinating and moving.
I may have shared this before. If I have, apologies, but I’m sharing it again as this evening I’m off to see the Central St Martins degree show, and the first time I went I came across this awesome project by one of the students:
This has stuck with me because it completely took the idea of re-thinking resources in a different way to solve a problem. The guy behind this noticed that the people taking part in music therapy sessions often withdrew to familiar items (in particular walking aids) rather than using the instruments provided. So what did he do – he turned the walking aids into musical instruments! If you only check out one of his designs, check out the Piano Zimmer Frame – I had a play on it and oh my gosh it blew me away! But more importantly this is exactly the sort of things that is more likely to build resilience amongst the users of the service, challenging their own perceptions of what they are capable of.
So what do you think? Do you agree with the things I’ve picked out? Have you come across other examples that might be of interest? Feel free to leave a comment and I promise I’ll get back to you.