The Knaresborough Connectors scheme was successfully launched on Thursday 11th July 2019.
A range of people from community organisations including the St Roberts’ steering group took part in exploring the need for Connectors and contributed to how it could work in Knaresborough.
What is the Knaresborough Connectors Scheme
The Scheme is modelled on an initiative in Frome, Somerset where Health and Community Connectors have been set up to respond to the needs of people through more appropriate alternatives than visiting their GP, or even ending up in hospital. The key to their success was the presence of voluntary Community Connectors who helped people find the support they need through community groups.
In Frome the Community Connectors link to Health Connectors who spend time with people to understand their health needs and provide a service over and above a GP appointment that links people to specific community groups that can improve their health through for example reducing their social isolation. We are linking with the local health and social care system to dovetail the Knaresborough Connectors scheme with existing and new initiatives in the area of ‘social prescribing’.
How the Knaresborough scheme will work.
Community Asset Mapping
Over 90 community groups and organisations have been mapped across the town. These groups are being contacted and put on an internal register and with permission their details are going on North Yorkshire Connect the web system that social prescribers will use.
Cohorts of Interest
Setting up Cohorts of Interest is important to complete the asset mapping, identify gaps in community assets and set up and find the Connectors. The Children and Young People’s Cohort of Interest has been set up and this small group has completed Community Asset Mapping for Children and Young People’s groups. They identified a gap for teenage provision especially in outlying villages where transport issues are prevalent. The people in this Cohort will be Connectors and will identify other Connectors. As this Cohort of Interest work together a Co-ordinator will be identified. A Co-ordinator is someone who a Connector refers to once a need has been identified, the Co-ordinator identifies a group and approach that the person in need could approach.
Co-ordinators and Connectors and Social Prescribers
Connectors have been identified for the Children’s and Young People cohort. This group will continue to work together and select a Co-ordinator. A Co-ordinator is someone the Connectors refer a person to, for help, or to find out information from about community groups. A Social Prescriber is similar to the role of Health Connector that Frome developed. Currently the Social Prescribers in Knaresborough are based part time in GP surgeries and are deployed through the County Council’s Living Well Service. Links have been made to these people in Knaresborough’s management teams and more will be done with Social Prescribers once the Connectors are trained and developed.
More information on Knaresborough Connectors from Nick Garrett firstname.lastname@example.org or 07753167190.