Gloucestershire starts the year with an exciting vision to build on our strong history of collaboration thanks to new funding and support from The King’s Fund and The National Lottery Community Fund.
The county has been selected as one of six areas to receive an initial £50,000 grant alongside development support from the Healthy Communities Together programme. A nine month planning and development period will be followed by the opportunity to access substantial further funding and support to deliver the plan.
The project and funding will enable the voluntary and community sector (VCS), the NHS and local authority to work in unison with communities and individuals to tackle health inequalities and improve health and wellbeing for everyone.
This news comes at the end of an already ground breaking year for Gloucestershire, as voluntary and community organisations, communities themselves and the individuals in them have played a major role in supporting the health and wellbeing of the local population throughout the pandemic.
Mary Hutton, Gloucestershire ICS Lead and Accountable Officer at NHS Gloucestershire Clinical Commissioning Group said:
“The response to the pandemic in Gloucestershire has been nothing short of phenomenal, with the NHS, local authority, VCS, communities and individuals across our county working together like never before to support each other.
We already have excellent, valuable relationships but we aren’t finished yet and are excited to see how much more we are able to achieve. This is why we’re so pleased to have been given a Healthy Communities Together grant so that we can go further, faster, making a positive impact on people’s lives and learning as we go.”
Sarah Scott, Executive Director of Adult Social Care and Public Health at Gloucestershire County Council said:
“We are keen to use this opportunity to reach people across the county, engaging and empowering communities to understand their needs and priorities, working together to improve health and wellbeing. We want to do things differently, ripping up the rulebook and developing a culture and way of doing things that allows us to ‘do with’ rather than ‘do to.’ By working in partnership, we can offer everyone an equal seat at the table, ensuring that we are truly inclusive so all voices can be heard”
Matt Lennard, Chief Officer at VCS Alliance said:
“Our research shows that in Gloucestershire, 57% of the voluntary and community sector support health and wellbeing in some capacity. This is an exciting time, full of opportunities to find new ways of reaching those who in the past have been overlooked. By using both technology and traditional methods, we will empower people to make their voices heard. We are looking forward to hearing from everyone in Gloucestershire about what really matters to them and how we can work together to improve lives.”
The Healthy communities together programme forms part of efforts by The King’s Fund to improve health and care for people with the worst health outcomes. The programme also builds on The National Lottery Community Fund’s expertise in place-based funding, aiming to support local areas to develop effective and sustainable partnerships between the voluntary and community sector, the NHS and local authorities to improve health and wellbeing, reduce health inequalities and empower communities.