Group of people sitting down are clapping. In the centre of the image there is one older woman who has her hand raised.

The UK is in crisis, with workers across the country asking for fairer pay, better working conditions, and improved access to key services. At the forefront of the crisis is the NHS and organisations providing health and social care services. They understand all too well the struggles of their patients and service users, but with reduced budgets, extensive wait times and low staff morale, many feel that there’s no resolution in sight. 

However, in southwestern Scotland, one Health and Social Care Partnership has blazed the trail for doing things differently, providing a beacon of hope for both staff and communities.

In 2022, Dumfries and Galloway Health and Social Care Partnership (DGHSCP) partnered with The Lens to deliver its first ever Pilot Intrapreneurship Programme: ‘Making the Leap with The Lens’.  

Pioneered by the Partnerships Chief Officer, Julie White, and David Rowland, Director of Strategic Planning and Transformation, the premise was simple. They wanted to identify, test, and develop up to six ideas designed to help them deliver their purpose; to help people live well, at home, for longer. They knew that, by giving both front-line staff and community members the opportunity to play an active role in developing and improving services, they’d not only be improving the lives of those accessing care, but empowering those closest to the problem, upskilling them in the process. 

To make this happen, DGHSCP committed an Investment Fund of £50k for staff and community members to share and develop their ideas. Through a series of tailored workshops, participants harnessed the tools, skills and confidence they needed to not only build a solid case for investment, but articulate the value of their ideas in a way they never envisioned possible.

Several months later, the five teams presented their ideas to an Investment Team made up of panellists from a range of diverse backgrounds. All five teams secured investment for their ideas. Now, the intrapreneurs – those who participated in the Programme – are busy working alongside The Lens to turn their ideas into action. You can read more about their progress here.

Since completing the Programme, Dumfries and Galloway have seen:

  • 100% increase and development of staff and community Innovation Skills (Associating, Networking, Observing, Questioning, Experimenting and Storytelling).
  • 100% increase in staff confidence (Public Speaking, Decision-Making, Collaborative-Working).

Not only that:

  • 100% of participants felt they were part of a supportive community.
  • 100% of participants would recommend our approach to others.