Health volunteers and community workers in Calderdale are being urged to “tell it how it is”.
The NHS is looking for new people to champion the views of the grassroots workers and patients.
NHS Calderdale Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG), in partnership with Voluntary Action Calderdale (VAC), is working to ensure that the views – good or bad – are heard when it comes to health issues.
Dr Alan Brook, Chairman of NHS Calderdale CCG said: “All our engagement champions are local people, living and working in some of our most deprived communities or working with some of our most marginalised people.
“By investing in these local people and asking them to talk with their residents or clients we will be able to really understand those that we seldom hear from.
“This will provide the CCG and other health partners with a rich picture of local needs, enabling us to provide better services in our communities.”
Megan Vickery, VAC Engagement Worker and lead on the Engagement Champions Project, said: “This is a genuine opportunity for people to tell it how it is. Their views are being listened to and their ideas really are helping to shape the future.”
Valerie Schofield, an Engagement Champion for Calderdale Crisis Pregnancy Care, said: “Being an Engagement Champion provides me with correct, up-to-date information about developments in the NHS.
“By sharing this information with the people I support I can help alleviate any fears they may have about future changes to services.
“The thing that people really have responded to is knowing that the CCG really wants to hear their opinions.”
To qualify as an Engagement Champion, applicants must either be a member of staff or a volunteer with a Calderdale voluntary and community sector group.
The Brighouse sessions begin on October 9, the Hebden Bridge sessions on October 14 and the Halifax sessions on November 11. Champions will attend four training sessions in total, all delivered by specialist staff within the CCG.
Anyone interested should contact Megan Vickery at firstname.lastname@example.org or ring 01422 431094.