Obtaining public health investment to effect transformational change
Lyndsey Sims, FCIMSPA, business development director, Active Tameside
The continuing reductions to public sector funding, challenges to deliver more efficient modes of operation and impact on health and wider social outcomes are key challenges for trusts and commissioners.
- To give advice to anyone seeking to transform their workforce and leisure estate to focus on getting the least active people more active, more often.
There are multiple infographics and information available that identifies the impact of physical activity on an individual’s wellbeing and to truly evolve as organisations in such a diversifying sector it is important to take charge and change how you work.
To meet these challenge to continue to meet the needs of their communities, authorities are transforming how they deliver services, but for sport and physical activity professionals it can seem like “mission impossible” to show how getting people more active can make a difference to community well-being.
Some service commissioners can see sport as “just for the sporty” – focused on facilities and income, so it’s time to change these perceptions.
There is a need to understand the commissioning process as it’s important to know what commissioning is and what it isn’t. The opportunities are many if the needs of others are known to help communities be more active.
Active Tameside undertook a review of its services and introduced “live well Tameside” with the goal to inspire people to live well and feel great. Under “live well” four wellness areas were introduced: starting well, living well, developing well and ageing well.
To deliver in these areas the emphasis needs to be on people management – how are they recruited, trained, supported, motivated and empowered.
They are central to these services and inspire users, the community, to get active and stay active. Active Tameside restructured and developed their existing staff to meet the new aims, and recruited new, qualified and experienced people to fill identified gaps. Building the right relationships with the right people at the right level helped the organisation to convey key message regarding its aims and objectives in securing additional funding to aid service delivery.
Communication is a key focus – ‘you can never do enough’ and you will always be challenged on how you can be better. Sharing good practice and achievements as well as shortfalls can help raise the community’s awareness about who you are and what you are trying to achieve.