Foundation has a strong ethos of Co-Production. This is where services and customers work together to build and deliver the service. Though it takes time to work towards this in it truest sense, across Foundation activities are taking place to build understanding and confidence in Co-Production.


Foundation Darlington attended a local volunteer fayre in February this year and formed a partnership with some local community groups, whereby Foundation would offer six hours labour on a Monday in return for some outdoor space and access to tools and plants. Three customers, a volunteer and student social worker got the project off to a flying start this week, with chopping up and moving a huge tree that had been felled, and turning it into animal habitats for hedgehogs and other local wildlife. A good day’s group work, managed through co-production, and a massive boost for everyone’s mental, physical and emotional wellbeing. Community spirit at its best. Well done everyone.

Darlington Dene's Project 20th March 2017 - Teamwork Darlington Dene's Project 20th March 2017 - Planting


On a Friday the Durham team host a breakfast club using ingredients provided by the Tesco Foodshare scheme in our town. This weekly donation means our customers have access to every day essentials such as bread along with little luxuries such as cakes and pastries that they wouldn’t normally have the spare money in their budget to purchase and thus breakfast club was born.
Using funds raised by the Durham team staff we have invested in a toastie machine, toaster, kitchen utensils and urn which the customers can  use themselves to make something to eat and drink and socialise with staff and other customers.
This week we discussed everyone’s favourite meals we all like to cook at home and wrote them down as recipes for our own cookbook which the customers have named Foundation Food.  Customers and staff came up with some excellent recipes suitable for all budgets and we hope to utilise this cookbook in the future by hosting a cooking session in one of our future fit kit groups.

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Great night last night at Poplar Villa – Customers Brent & (Ethan – Peer Mentor) helped staff decorate a void room ready for a new customer moving in Friday. They worked really hard. Sue (Support Assistant) said they were a great help! Over at Victoria Court, the customers decided to have a good tidy up before their very popular arts and crafts sessions. It’s great to see them taking the initiative to look after their environment.

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Poplar Villa are also trialling questionnaires which look to help customers identify where their skills lie and empower them to use those skills to aid co-production within the service and Foundation as a whole. These questions will also aid the development of the Activity Worker roles, allowing them to build programmes of activities that meet the customer’s interests and develop their skills further. Where it is hard to motivate engagement in the activities, it is hoped that tailoring them in this way will support engagement and help customers build confidence. The trial has gone well so far and we look forward to hearing more about it later in the year.

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