New Thinking on Kindness
On 1st November, the Trust launched a new report, written by Carnegie Fellow Julia Unwin, Kindness, emotions and human relationships: The blindspot in public policy. This extraordinary and very accessible report received an overwhelming response on social media: we were delighted that the findings resonated with so many people from different personal and professional backgrounds, and look forward to building on these conversations in 2019.
And on World Kindness Day, we published the first ever quantitative survey on people’s experiences of kindness in communities and public services. Quantifying kindness, public engagement and place presents data from a survey of over 5,000 people in the UK and Ireland, and also provides insight into people’s sense of control and their attitudes towards public engagement.
Trust Continues Affordable Credit Campaign
It’s been a busy few months for our continuing campaign to improve the availability of affordable credit for people across the UK. We were absolutely delighted to make the first investment from our Affordable Credit Loan Fund in Fair For You, a not-for-profit lender, who have received £500,000 to help them scale up their operations. We’ve launched three new research reports: on young people and credit; where people who previously borrowed from payday loan companies are now accessing money; and on the use of savings and credit across Scotland. And we’ve continued our advocacy campaign, with a packed stakeholder roundtable event at our office in Dunfermline and with a series of presentations across the UK by our team as part of Talk Money Week 2018.
Digital Inclusion in Health and Care in Wales
In Partnership with Wales Cooperative Centre we launched our new report Digital Inclusion in Health and Care in Wales on 7 November. The report is written by Bob Gann, an expert in this field and the former programme Director of Widening Digital Participation at NHS England. It examines the current state of play for digital inclusion in health and social care in Wales, highlights good practice, identifies priority areas for future activity, presents the business case for digital inclusion in health and care and provides 18 clear recommendations for action. The report is published in English version and in Welsh. The report was launched Digital Health and Care Conference Wales, where later that day the Cabinet Secretary for Health and Social Care Services in Wales, Vaughan Gething AM, announced a £3 million investment to tackle this issue
Engaging Libraries Celeration Event
Over the past year, Engaging Libraries supported sixteen public library services across the UK to deliver health and wellbeing public engagement events. A celebration event was held for the Engaging Libraries projects to celebrate their time on the programme and to share learning and best practice. Achievements from the projects were wide ranging, with a play commissioned by Oldham Libraries’ project Comics and Cosplay being used as a corporate training tool for Oldham Council, and City of London Libraries winning the Town Clerk’s Award for their project Release the Pressure.
Fulfilling Work in Ireland
The Trust was in Dublin for a stakeholder round table on 23 November sharing the findings from our Fulfilling Work in Ireland research (published 23 October). The round table was organised in partnership Dublin-based Think Tank for Action on Social Change (TASC) and was well attended by representatives from Ireland’s policy, charity, trade union, academic and business sectors. The Trust’s presentation of Fulfilling Work in Ireland highlighted sectoral and demographic inequalities in access to fulfilling work in Ireland, including key challenges around low pay, pay inequality and job insecurity. In addition Dr Sinead Pembroke from TASC highlighted policy solutions to precarious work, and Professor Chris Warhurst from the Warwick Institute for Employment Research discussed job quality initiatives at the EU level, before a group discussion of policy priorities and actions required to improve job quality in Ireland.
Making Procurement Work for All
On 12 November, the Trust launched Making Procurement Work for All at an event in Newcastle attended by stakeholders and policy makers from across the North East of England. The new research, carried out for the Trust by Durham University, explores current practice and ‘good work’ procurement barriers and success factors in consultation with senior regional procurement stakeholders. Good work procurement strategies would increase the chances of public sector procurement contracts being awarded to suppliers who can demonstrate good work practices, such as payment of the living wage. The report was welcomed by the newly formed North of Tyne Combined Authority, who, in the second stage of this project, intend to work with the Trust and Durham University to develop the procurement element of their Good Work Business Pledge for the region.
The #NotWithoutMe Accelerator
This year the Trust delivered it’s first accelerator. The #NotWithoutMe Accelerator was a six-month programme to provide organisations the time, resources and support from peers and experts to develop their approaches to delivering digital inclusion projects with vulnerable young people.
Launching in July, the six-organisation cohort has explored a variety of topics including digital skills, evaluation, user-centred design, stakeholder networks and communication, culminating in December in a final investment pitch for one organisation to receive £40,000 and a year of further support from the Trust.
We look forward to sharing the outcome of the #NotWithoutMe Accelerator early in the New Year.