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Meet the team


  • Alex Feather, Arshad Mahmood, Dave Watson, Maria Ineson, Sally Anne Evans, Paul Cartright

What is the positive change that has emerged through new collaborations or partnerships during Covid-19 that your project is going to embed?

The biggest surprise that emerged during Covid 19, is how positively project participants have responded to more online and remote ways of working and how this has massively increased uptake and participation in projects. This required our partners to completely shift from group working in community settings to everything on line and remote working. This involved some new partnership and different collaborations with existing partners who adapted to the new ways of working. Clearly the most positive change over this period has been the increase in the numbers of people engaging and benefitting from the activities offered. In terms of number in the last 6 months we have had over 9,000 direct contact and over 12,000 which is double the normal numbers. T said “enjoying interacting with people on the virtual events, learning how to make new things and meeting new people”.

What does your project aim to achieve?

We feel building a fully interactive multimedia digital platform would enable us to reach even more people especially those who find it most difficult to connect socially. We do see this initiative further supporting our response to restrictions of Covid 19 and feel the approach would have longer term benefits in helping to combat loneliness and social isolation. The digital platform will help our less digitally enabled partners to be included in this way of working; including smaller peer led groups. We would see the digital platform performing a coordinating role in bringing together a variety of diverse offers across a large geographic area serving over 1.3 million people and providing a pathway for vulnerable people.  While our focus has been Yorkshire and Humber, we feel that a digital platform could be beneficial UK wide, as we have bank of national and international resources around creativity and mental health support.

How will the project be delivered?

We will employ a project coordinator who has experience of developing and designing multi- media digital platforms to support social media style approaches. We will build on the social movement that Creative Minds has created to proactively build a supportive community approach and would actively seek out someone with this experience. The Coordinator would work alongside our host trust communications team to develop a platform that is complementary to our current website and creates safe pathways for people who use NHS services. We would see the digital platform supporting a variety of channels including Creative Minds Radio and TV delivering live streaming and podcasting audiovisual material. We would share the learning from this piolet with our other charities, Mental Health Museum, Spirit in Mind and the Trust’s Recovery Colleges. We would also build on our previous community reporting Q project and this network will help to drive these developments co-productively.

How is your project going to share learning?

We see this project as a piolet which we can support others and we will start with our close partners. We would produce a full project report to share the learning from our approach, including a full account of the objectives we have achieved. As already stated we would hope that some of the content from our digital platform would be useful to a broader UK and Ireland this would include the learning from the project which would accessible digitally. We would also be happy to be involved in any learning events set up by Q to share learning either in person when permitted or digitally if not. We also have a magazine format for sharing our learning, which we would include this project in a future copy and this would be available digitally. We would aim to write some progress blogs that we would share on the Q website.

How you can contribute

  • It would be great to hear from Q members who have designed developed a digital platform for sharing social media materials. It would also be good to hear from people who have been using social media approaches to connect and deliver activities remotely through social media platforms. It would also be good to hear from people who might be interested in promoting and sharing an information exchange approach to benefit people in their area. It does feel like more people are open to this type of sharing and collaborating across traditional boundaries and we are looking forward to making more contacts.

Plan timeline

22 Sep 2020 Quarter1 recruit project coordinator and run some consultation workshops
15 Oct 2020 Quarter1 develop digital platform framework and structure
15 Oct 2020 Quarter2 Shape platform based on workshop feedback
15 Oct 2020 Quarter2 enter content films, podcasts and live streaming of activities
15 Oct 2020 Quarter2 soft launch of site to limited number of users
15 Oct 2020 Quarter3 continue to refine and shape offer based on feedback
15 Oct 2020 Quarter3 formal launch promoted to broader partners and participants
15 Oct 2020 Quarter4 Prepare final report on project
15 Oct 2020 Quarter4 Team training to support ongoing maintenance and develop

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