Involving the people in the management, design and delivery of services is key to making self-directed support happen.

What does it mean for the person receiving support?

People rightly have rising expectations as to much they will be listened to by the organisations providing them with support. Involvement should not be limited to involving people in the planning of their own support. The voices of supported people should be heard at all levels within a provider organisation – including the design of services, governance, strategy development and more.

What it means for the support provider?

Involving the people you support in writing the policies that affect them and in the decisions your organisation make at board level.

Involving the people you support in the planning and delivery of events such as, conferences, training events, planning days, annual general meetings and workshops.

Making sure that your complaints procedures and other channels are easily accessible to the people you support.

What are the challenges?

Considering what approach to user-involvement fits your organisation best.

Language and culture – the frequent reliance on jargon and other excluding arrangements for involvement, puts off many service users who are not confident in or used to such situations

Inadequate information about involvement – this is made worse by the frequent lack of appropriate and accessible information about getting involved, discouraging many from taking the first steps to getting involved.

Top tips

Use the National Involvement Network’s Charter for Involvement as a starting point for planning user-involvement in your organisation.