A Warm Welcome for our Funders

This week we held a visit from our two funders, The Health Foundation and the Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC). They visited us at our offices within the University of Birmingham. This was the first time everyone had met face to face, and a wonderful opportunity to hear from people across IMPACT.

Updating our Funders on our work

We heard from Robin Miller, our Demonstrators Lead; Izzy Kennedy and Munpreet Sohal, our communications team; and Karen McCormick, our Lived Experience Engagement Lead. Our Deputy Directors, Alison Bowes and Ewan King also provided their periodic progress update.

Robin updated us on the progress of our Demonstrator site in Northern Ireland, with IMPACTAgewell. He walked us through the cyclical stages of a Demonstrator: engage, understand, reflect, evidence, create and change, and assess. He described what had happened at each stage so far, and answered any questions. We talked about the world cafe event held with IMPACTAgewell last November. We also celebrated the great outcomes from the day, and what comes next for the asset-based approaches Demonstrator. You can find out more about the Demonstrator on our project pages.

Izzy and Munpreet reflected on 2022 – a busy year for IMPACT communications. The group celebrated the success of our Conservative Party Conference fringe event, a day that started so many important conversations, and our Festival of Social Sciences digital exhibition. We also discussed plans and priorities for this year. Other discussions included everything from future projects, to how we will communicate the learnings from our 2022-23 pilots.

Karen gave an update on the Co-production Advisory Group. She described their successes and challenges, reflections, and the priorities which have shaped their 2023 workplan. You can learn more about Karen’s reflections in this blog. She has also written about how we’ll be co-producing in 2023.

Over lunch, we were joined by Nicola Gale, Head of the School of Social Policy, and Professor Richard Black, Pro-Vice-Chancellor and Head of the College of Social Sciences, in the recently refurbished Park House.

An afternoon looking ahead

In the afternoon, we were joined by Ewan, our Deputy Director and thematic lead for national embedding. He shared his plans for embedding in 2023, as our pilot projects come to a close. As IMPACT is an implementation centre, our key objectives are to enable practical improvements on the ground. Ewan’s role is to help us make a crucial contribution to longer-term cultural change. To do so, IMPACT will need to collaborate with existing adult social care policy and practice partners. This work will then need to be embedded locally, regionally, nationally and across the UK.

Alison is our Deputy Director and evidence and evaluation lead. She updated us on how we’re using evidence to support our projects, and how those projects are being evaluated. Both Ewan and Alison also shared updates on plans for future recruitment.

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