IRISS's monthly column as published in Care Appointments magazine.
Radio is a great way of sharing stories, research and experience. It's almost a year since IRISS launched IRISS.FM, an internet radio station for the social services in Scotland, and we now air a regular schedule of varied programmes: Foetal Alcohol Disorder Syndrome; young people’s safety on the internet; bi-polar disorder; women's imprisonment. Able Radio is another example of how effective this medium can be.
Generations Working Together, managed by the Scottish Mentoring Network and supported by the Beth Johnston Foundation, is an initiative that provides information, offers support and encourages involvement to benefit all of Scotland’s generations.
The organisation aims to:
“Homeless women will often resort to extreme measures to keep a roof over their heads: remaining in abusive relationships, engaging in sex work or committing minor crimes to be taken into custody. Others are found in crack houses and brothels, where they are controlled by pimps and drugs. For women that do end up on the streets, hidden sleeping sites away from the more obvious doorways and subways may protect them from immediate dangers, but can isolate them from potential help”.
Digital and social media offer new and creative ways to conduct, as well as share, research. Capitalising on this is a team of researchers from the Universities of Edinburgh and Glasgow that has developed an enterprising initiative – a website resource for anyone with an interest in using digital media for research, consultation or participation activities with children and young people.
It is argued that welfare reform will have a significant impact on benefit claimants and the supports that vulnerable people in society receive. Access to quality and consistent information will be important in ensuring that people are prepared for the changes that will ensue.
High Impact Innovations is a website launched by the NHS Institute for Innovation and Improvement, which is designed to showcase case studies, videos and other material to help spread and adopt the ‘high impact innovations’ identified in the publication, Innovation health and wealth, accelerating adoption and diffusion in the NHS, as well as encourage people to use online communities for sharing real-life examples and stories.
The advent of self-directed support and personalised care will mean that over time, more and more individuals will have control of, and choice around, their own care and support, and this will include where and how they want to live. Housing Options Scotland is a public service organisation that provides a public access service to all people with disabilities throughout Scotland. It does not directly provide housing, but offers detailed information and advice that will enable people to find the right home.
The Changing lives: Report of the 21st century social work review (2006) stressed the need for clear leadership and effective management at all levels within the workforce. While it is important that individuals take responsibility for the development of their own leadership skills, employers need to provide support for them to do so. The Scottish Social Services Council (SSSC) has recently launched a new web resource - Step into Leadership - to promote and encourage effective leadership within the workforce.
The Multi-Agency Resource Service (MARS) and the Scottish Child Care and Protection Network (SCCPN) have recently joined forces and renamed themselves WithScotland. The merging of the two organisations has led to the development of a new website - a national resource for the benefit of everyone in Scotland involved in protecting children.
Social Care Institute for Excellence (SCIE), with the support of Voice, the Who Cares Trust and the Fostering Network, has produced a website that informs looked-after children and young people on what care, supports and choices are available to them. Info 4 Care Kids has been developed in partnership with children and young people, so the voices of these individuals underpin the shape and content of the resource.