Quarriers is committed to ensuring people we support are at the centre of what we do, empowering individuals to use their experiences and voices to influence positive change; enhancing and shaping future delivery of our services.
Our Inclusion Service, part-funded through the generous support of the Corra CYPEIF and ALEC Fund is dedicated to meaningful inclusion which is genuine and not tokenistic. The focus is on offering choice to people we support . In practice this creates opportunities for all children, young people, families and adults supported by our organisation, particularly those facing the greatest barriers to access to choose to participate. There are a wide range of ways in which Quarriers empower those we support to use their voices:
Hear My Voice Group
A group developed to empower people we support to engage directly with Operational Staff, Volunteers and our wider Senior Management Team, including our Chief Executive and Board Members. This platform provides opportunities for the views and ideas of people we support to be heard, strengthening our commitment to having people we support at the heart of our organisations decision making.
Voices in Projects
A quarterly group which has been developed to empower young people to discuss the support they receive from Quarriers Services and potential changes which could improve their experience.
People we support Survey
A new approach to gathering feedback from people we support – The Inclusion Team will be meeting with people we support from across all of our service provision on an informal basis (casual conversations during coffee mornings and other events) to discuss their views of their support and how we could improve the provision for them. The responses will be recorded, collated, fed back to the relevant stakeholders and the findings will help shape ongoing provision.
Safeguarding and Services Committee
People we support attend our Safeguarding and Services Committee meetings to talk about their views and how these have shaped the action plans created from the Hear My Voice and Voices in Projects groups.
People we support are involved in our Inclusive Recruitment process for both staff and Trustees. They attend interviews and directly participate in the selection process, influencing the values that are embedded across the organisation.
Young Funders Initiative
Through funding from Life Changes Trust, earlier this year we were able to facilitate a Young Funders Initiative, a grant making project led entirely by young people. A board of six young people were the decision makers, determining the criteria for their fund, how much could be applied for, what the application forms would look like, and assessing all applications to determine if they were successful or not. This Initiative was a great success with £25k distributed as grants to benefit 54 young people, helping them achieve their goals. This funded a wide range of purchases including driving lessons, clothing, household goods, educational materials for college and electronics.
Amy, a member of the Board of Young People said “I really enjoyed the young funders project as I got to make the decisions to help other young people in my situation. I enjoyed giving young people money to help them achieve their goals and hearing their stories and reasons behind why they needed the money. I enjoyed meeting the rest of the panel and getting to know them”.
Nicole, a young person whose funding application was successful said she was “buzzing” when she was awarded £500 to enable her to make home improvements and to take driving lessons. She had a big smile on her face and was so excited when picking out decorating items for her home and it as positively impacted her wellbeing, all thanks to the Young Funders.