Building Together through co-production

Building Together through co-production

Please note: image description provided below in the box titled "Building Together launch event visual summary provided by Carrie Lewis of New Possibilities"

What is co-production?

“The term co-production refers to a way of working, where everybody works together on an equal basis to create a service or come to a decision which works for them all. 
Co-production means professionals and citizens sharing power to plan, design and deliver support together.
It's about recognising that everyone has an important contribution to make to improve quality of life for people and communities.” - Think Local Act Personal (TLAP). 

What is Building Together?

Building Together is about asking those who use our Adult Social Care services to get involved in shaping our services by becoming a part of our new Building Together Forum.

We want to make sure that our service users and their families and carers, are given the opportunity to improve Adult Social Care across the county by contributing their experience, skills, and influence on the design, development and delivery of our services. 

This process is called 'co-production' and is something we as a council are fully committed to. Co-production is about people who use services, and people who run services, coming together as equals. Meaning people who use services are being consulted, included, and working together from beginning to end on any project that affects them. 

How can I be involved?

We’d love to hear from anyone who wants to work with us to make a real impact to the development of our Adult Social Care services!

You don’t need any professional qualifications, just lived experience of receiving social care in Worcestershire!

Members of the Building Together Forum will work with us as equals to review and shape services in an honest and open environment, and in doing so will make a huge difference to the lives of people who use our services.

You can get in touch with the team here:

Contact the Building Together Team

We look forward to hearing from you.

- The Worcestershire Adult Social Care Building Together Team!

What will the Building Together Forum look like?

Download: An easy read version of what will the Building Together Forum look like (PDF)

Building Together Forum

We are developing a forum with:

  • adults who use social care 
  • their carers and families
  • providers of social care

The forum will include a Peer Support Network and a Building Together forum board.

The goal will be to ensure that at all times people who use services and their carers have an equal voice and influence over decisions made.  

Peer Support Network

The peer support network will: 

  • share their views and ideas with the board, for example at meetings, workshops
  • be a support network for adults who use services and their carers 

Building Together Forum Board 

The board will work in partnership with Worcestershire County Council. They will develop the following:

  • Building Together Charter
  • values 
  • strategy 

The Charter will state:

  • how the forum expects adult social care to work in partnership with people who use services and their carers
  • how people who use social care will be involved in the designing, review, and ongoing monitoring of service

Board Members

The Building Together Forum Board will be made up of ten diverse people who use services and/or carers:

  • you will be committing to attend board meetings every other month, normally lasting between two to three hours
    • payment payable at £25.38 per hour
    • support will be provided to prepare for and participate in meetings, as required
  • induction and support will be provided for the role
  • to assist with developing and co-producing our Building Together newsletter, every two months
  • continue to learn, review and shape services together whilst having fun in an honest and open environment

We have currently paused new applications to the board.

How can I find out more about Building Together?

If you would like to find out more about joining the Building Together Forum, please email using the link below.

Contact the Building Together Team

We look forward to hearing from you.

The Worcestershire Adult Social Care Building Together Team

Building Together launch event visual summary provided by Carrie Lewis of New Possibilities


People with lived experience described why Co-production was important to them and the reasons why they became involved in other Co-production Forums. Key messages to make Co-production work:

  • there needs to be equality
  • there needs to be reciprocity
  • there needs to be diversity

These valuable insights of the person’s lived experience are the key to teaching and understanding!

The attendees discussed “What is Co-production?” the key notes were taken:

  • culture shift
  • equal partners
  • everyone together
  • power shift
  • share decision making
  • respect
  • accessible

The Group came up with ideas for Co-production principles:

  • shared values
  • pragmatic
  • resilience
  • time
  • every voice counts
  • the group regulates itself
  • build relationships and strong bonds
  • allow for exploration
  • listen to opinions
  • on-going support
  • easy to understand language, plain English, good communication
  • channel positive behaviours and emotions
  • creating a safe space
  • recognition and reward
  • training and upskilling

Worcestershire County Council Strategic Director of People then signed the West Midlands Social Work Teaching Partnership Pledge to show the Council’s commitment to Co-production. The West Midlands Social Work Teaching Partnership Pledge and Co-Production Charter was produced by people with lived experience 

The Co-production Lead then described how we would like to work with people with lived experience:

  • the goal is to ensure that all times people who use services and their carers have an equal voice and influence over decisions
  • we would like to develop a Building Together Forum Board, a Peer Support Volunteer Network and develop relationships with Partners across the County

“When co-production works best, people who use services and carers are valued by organisations are equal partners. They can share power and have influence over decisions made.” 

- National Co-Production Advisory Group, Think Local Act Personal (TLAP)

A video introduction to Co-Production by Social Care Institute for Excellence (SCIE):

Have we got co-production news for you: episode one (subtitled)

The ladder of participation

The ladder of participation below shows the different ways that people can be involved with organisations delivering services.

Worcestershire County Council is committed to working in equal partnership with residents who use adult social care, shown on the ladder as the highest rung, which is Co-production.

Ladder breakdown:

  • Doing with - in an equal and reciprocal partnership
    • Co-production
    • Co-design
  • Doing for - engaging and involving people
    • Engagement 
    • Consultation
    • Informing
  • Doing to - trying to fix people who are passive recipients of service
    • Educating
    • Coercion

Ladder of participation reproduced with permission of TLAP

The Ladder of Co-production by Think Local Act Personal- Subtitled

Building Together: co-production in Worcestershire

We want to work in equal partnership with adults who use social care to improve services with people who use them.

We already have some forums and organisations which involve people who use services. We are contacting these groups and inviting them to be involved. 

Invited groups


Speakeasy NOW logo

Disability Support Project logo

Worcestershire Association of Carers logo

Healthwatch Worcestershire logo

ONSIDE logo.

Our Way logo

Building Together: our journey so far

Our journey so far:

  • Building Together survey Download an Easy Read summary of the survey (PDF)
  • Building Together year on year budget agreed and signed off by the Strategic Director of People
  • external launch event including the signing of the West Midlands Teaching Partnership Pledge
  • recruitment of seven Building Together Forum Board members
  • signed off Building Together Forum Board Terms of Reference
  • Building Together Charter is in draft due for Dec 2023
  • supported the development the “I” statements within the Adult Social Care Strategy



Building Together through Co-production and the Adult Social Care Strategy

Four workshops took place with people with lived experience, partner organisations and frontline Social Work staff in July 2023.

The workshops looked at the “we will” core standards i.e. promises listed under the seven Key Priorities produced by the Council. The attendees developed the “I” core statements which they felt reflected what they would expect to be the outcome for the “We will” core standards.

The feedback from every workshop was the “we will” core standards were too long and some of the language was difficult to understand. The Council listened to this feedback and updated the “we will” core standards.

New Possibilities also attended the workshops to create the visual representations of ALL the “we/I” statements proposed. These are shown below alongside the top rated by the workshop attendees (up to four) “I” statements for each “we will” core standards.
Workshop 1

The workshop looked at the “We will” core standards for the following Key Priorities:

Workshop 1

Key Priority 1 – Safe and Effective Services

We Will Core Standard I Statement

We will work with people and our partners to establish and maintain safe systems of care, where safety is managed, monitored, and assured. 

We ensure continuity of care, including when people move between different services.

I feel protected and safe in my home.

I expect services to communicate well between services and in my best interests.

I can safely access what I need to access in my environment and local community.

We will work with people to understand what being safe means to them and work with them as well as our partners on the best way to achieve this. 

We concentrate on improving people’s lives while protecting their right to live in safety, free from bullying, harassment, abuse, discrimination, avoidable harm, and neglect.

We make sure we share concerns quickly and appropriately

I feel empowered to speak up when I don't feel safe.

I have safe friendships and relationships. I can choose who is in my life. I have the right not to be exploited and protected from exploitation.

I have support from people who know me well and would notice if something is not right.

I have the right to have my cultural identity respected.

We will grow a culture of positive risk taking that is personalised and places the individual at the centre of risk making decisions which promotes least restrictive options. 

There are people who can support me, if I am unable to make my own decisions, when decisions are required.

I have the right and I am supported to challenge decisions, if I am able to, about risks and management of these risks.

I am allowed and encouraged to take risks and possibly make mistakes. I am allowed to learn from my mistakes.

I expect no unnecessary barriers that could restrict me.

Key Priority 3 – Working with our Communities

We Will Core Standard I Statement
We will work with our local communities to understand the diverse health and care needs of people and local communities, so care is joined-up, flexible and supports choice and continuity.

I need to have a clearer idea of a workers’ role, who my named/allocated worker is, and what they can support with or signpost to within my local community.

I expect services to communicate well between themselves in my best interests and so I only tell my story once.

I have accurate and up to date records that everyone involved in my support can see, health and social care need to be joined up.

I have the right to access care and support and to revisit services if needed.

We will involve people who have experienced multiple disadvantages, in designing and commissioning services and reach out to communities to understand how to improve access and create more inclusive services.

I will be asked for my feedback in a way I choose throughout the whole time  I receive services
My feedback will be used to help shape and create services
I expect to be treated with respect and to not be made to feel a nuisance. I want it to be acknowledged that the first contact takes courage

Workshop 2

The workshop looked at the “We will” core standards for the following Key Priority:

Key Priority 2 – Independence and Opportunities

We Will Core Standard I Statement
We will maximise the effectiveness of people’s care and treatment by assessing and reviewing their health, care, wellbeing, and communication needs with them.

I will receive the best care when all my needs are known, met appropriately and sensitively by someone I know and trust. 

I expect people who work with me to have up-to-date information about my needs and wants and to ask me about them.

We will support people to manage their health and wellbeing. 

People can maximise their independence, choice, and control, live healthier lives and stay connected to their local community and networks. 

Where possible reduce their future needs for care and support.

I have a right to be as independent as possible for as long as possible and I feel part of the community. 

I can make my own choices and I am in control of what happens in my life.

My health and wellbeing are important to me. If I need help, I know who to ask. 

We will support young adults to move out of family home in a planned way. 

We will work collaboratively between Children’s and Adult social care services to review how we support young people in their transition into Adulthood, to ensure they continue to feel supported.

I expect Children’s and Adults Social Care services to work together. 

I will be supported during transition into Adulthood in a way that suits me.

If I want to, I will be supported to move out from my family home.

We will work with our local communities to understand the diverse health and care needs of people and local communities, so care is joined-up, flexible and supports choice and continuity.

My unique health and care needs are recognized and accepted.

I am in control of my care, my support/care is planned around me and needs to be flexible.

I need to know my support networks are heard and listened to.

We will explore opportunities to enable people, carers, and the social care workforce to understand the benefits of assisted technology.

I expect to live independently for as long as possible with the right technology relevant to my needs.

I expect assisted technology, aids and adaptations to be part of the planning process.

I expect services I access to be fully aware of assisted technology available to me.

We will take a whole family approach when planning and delivering care in all circumstances where it is right for the individual and family.

I want the needs of people who are important to me to be considered.

I expect my worker to be  transparent and clear throughout the planning process and consider mine and my families wishes.

I want agencies supporting me to work collaboratively with my family/people who are important to me within my best interests.

We will  actively seek out and listen to information about people who are most likely to experience inequality in experience or outcomes. 

We tailor the care, support and treatment in response to this.

We will actively seek out and listen to information about people who are most likely to experience inequality in experience or outcomes. 

We tailor the care, support and treatment in response to this.

Workshop 3

The workshop looked at the “We will” core standards for the following Key Priorities:

Key Priority 4 – Choice and Personalised Services

We Will Core Standard I Statement

We will value diversity in our community and reflect this in our workforce. 

We work towards an inclusive and fair culture by improving equality, equity, and choice for the residents of Worcestershire and the people who work for us.

I want language I can understand, jargon free, user friendly and accessible to all.

I want leaders and staff that represent me.

I want improvement in language, culture and barriers to learning around this. 

We will improve the representation of ethnic minority groups across all staffing grades within the adult social care services.

I want someone who can do the job and has the right skills.

I want improvement in the language used and understanding of culture. There should be no barriers to this. 

I have the right not to be judged, stereotyped or discriminated against. 

I want staff that represent me.

We will expand alternative accommodation models and promote them as viable options for people.

I want to live in a quality home/place that works for me (such as a specialist service).

I want a choice of where to live and what I do in my home and when without restriction.

We will review the county council’s approach to charging, fees, and contributions for adult social care services, ensuring it is in line with national guidance. 

We will monitor the number of people turning down care or withdrawing from care to better understand their reasons and the impact.

I expect to have a named person who I can speak to about funding, contributions and money to do with Social Care services including direct payments.

I have a good understanding of the rules and how contributions are calculated and what I need to pay for.

I expect information about my financial assessment to be personal and easy to understand.

Key Priority 5 – Working with Partners

We Will Core Standard I Statement

We will understand our duty to collaborate and work in partnership, so our services work seamlessly for people. 

We share information and learning with partners and collaborate for improvement.

I know who my "Partners" are and what to expect.

I expect those supporting me to have the skills, knowledge and appropriate training to support me. 

I expect those supporting me to communicate with networks and advocates and are assertive on my behalf.

I expect good communication between services supporting  me and to work in my best interests, so I only have to tell my story once.

We will support more people to stay in their own homes, building on work with partners to improve support when people leave hospital and timely access to adaptions, equipment, and technology.

My family, friends and carers will be recognized, valued and involved in discharge planning.

Before I return home from hospital, I expect the appropriate adaptations, equipment and support services to be in place.

I expect health and social care services to work together to ensure I get the support I need.

Workshop 4

The workshop looked at the “We will” core standards for the following Key Priorities:

Key Priority 6 – Information, Advice and Communication

We Will Core Standard I Statement
We will provide a range of accessible and inclusive information to ensure effective and open communication that enrich the lives of Worcestershire residents.

I expect to be able to choose the way information is presented to me, no jargon, acronyms and complex language and the way I receive it in.

I expect to be made aware of what information is available and where to find it so I can make an informed choice.

I expect to be treated with respect and to not be made to feel a nuisance when asking for information and advice, it should be acknowledged that sometimes this may take courage.

We will promote digital inclusion for individuals who require care and support.

We will use technology to enable greater management of health and wellbeing, maximise independence, increase choice and reduce social isolation

I expect to know what technology is available to me, how to access and the costs.

I expect to have the choice of digital or face to face contact.

I want access to the best available technology that can support my health and wellbeing.

I expect access to training for myself and my carer on how to use technology that is given to me.


Key Priority 7 – Sustainability and High Quality

We Will Core Standard I Statement

We will have clear responsibilities, roles, systems of accountability and good governance to manage and deliver good quality, sustainable care, treatment, and support. 

We act on the best information about risk, performance, and outcomes, and we share this securely with others when appropriate

I expect the Council and service providers to have and share accurate and appropriate and up to date information about me.

I expect the Council and service providers to have good secure quality systems and processes in place.

We will focus on continuous learning, innovation and improvement across our
organisation and the local system in collaboration with key stakeholders.

I expect the chance to feedback continuously. I expect action to be taken on my feedback and I am then told the outcome.

I expect new ideas to be trailed and a culture of continuous transformation.

I expect learning from the community and other local authorities to be included.

We will have inclusive leaders at all levels who understand the context in which we deliver care and support and, embody the culture and values of their workforce and organisation.

I want leaders that reflect me.

I expect the user voice to be part of the decision-making process from the beginning and co-production to be from the start of the idea.

I expect my "expertise by experience" to be at the core and a vital part of all decision making.

Leaders must understand and actively demonstrate all core Adult Social Care values at all times.


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