Consultations

Consultations

All User Voice projects start with consultation to ensure that we are being true to our values and principles by not imposing a project on an area or institution but ensuring there is a need for it and taking into account local variations which may affect delivery. User Voice has a great deal of experience in delivering user-led consultations to draw on which informs our approach.

During the consultation phase the following stages are undertaken:

  • Mapping – the places where service users from a diverse range of backgrounds and experiences can be found are mapped and contact made. These include, but are not confined to, probation programmes, hostels, drug and alcohol services, mentoring projects, informal networks (such as the 12 Step Fellowships), prisons, mental health services, gender specific projects and other groups with specific needs, such as disability groups
  • Surveys – once identified and contact is made, we then set up visits to introduce the project to service providers and service users in these different locations. Those service users engaged are then invited to answer a few questions in a short survey. The survey has two main functions. First, it provides interesting and useful data on a number of issues. Second, and more importantly, it is a tool for engaging people and assessing their motivation to take part in the focus groups, as set out below.
  • Focus groups – service users are then invited to attend focus groups which address relevant local themes around service provision and inclusion which are captured in a report. At the focus groups participants elect representatives to attend the co-production workshop (if there is one).
  • Training – the service user representatives are trained in order to fully participate in the co-production workshop, in areas such as public speaking.
  • Interim report – is produced setting out preliminary findings from the survey and focus group data to inform discussions at the main workshop.
  • Co-production workshop – involving the service user representatives and an equal number of service providers and commissioners who work together in issued based discussion groups to develop solutions to local issues.

Published Consultations