Not another consultation! Making community engagement informal

24th November 2011

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Not another consultation! Making community engagement informal and fun, is a practical guide to events that combine the informality of community fun days with meaningful engagement methods.

This guide enables practitioners to design and run active and exciting forms of engagement that allow participants to drop in and out and is ideally suited to the needs of diverse communities.

The guide is especially focussed on health related engagement with local authorities, but the contents are likely to be useful for anyone interested in new ways of involving the public in services or decisions.

Local government

Local government is a key player in the improvement of health in the community and tackling health inequalities. Outlined below is how informal engagement processes will help you with these challenges.

Informal engagement activity will:

  • ensure public opinion is built into the JSNA
  • reach out to ‘overlooked’ and vulnerable groups to combat health inequalities
  • support the Duty to Involve which requires involvement in service planning and development
  • highlight what assets the community holds and how best to work with these to develop sustainable initiatives around services
  • ensure you coordinate engagement processes and events with partners where appropriate, enabling health improvements to be supported through a wider range of agencies
  • help to build trust between the council and the local community, improving relationships

NHS Bodies

Informal engagement activity will help you:

  • improve the patient experience
  • support policy and practice guidance that emphasises joint working
  • support the Duty to Involve which requires involvement in planning and development
  • encourage contribution to enhanced public health programmes
  • improve partnership working.

Please note:

The Duty to Involve also applies to the providers of NHS services including NHS trusts and NHS foundation trusts, which also need to involve people

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