We met with the Children’s Commission Leadership Group (CCLG) in Falkirk to share each of the service design concepts and learn what actions they’ll take from this work.

Our audience included 13 people from a range of organisations and services. These included: Education, Social Work, Housing, Corporate Services and the Employment and Training Unit from Falkirk Council, and partners such as the NHS, CVS, Barnardos and Skills Development Scotland. Mike Nicholson from The Lines Between and Dr Catherine-Rose Stocks Rankin were both present too, using this opportunity to support their evaluation of this work.

Over an hour was carved into the presentation time so audience could ask questions of about the service design concepts, for the Co-Design Crew to ask questions of the audience, and for general discussion. This blog posts shares some of this feedback and actions people took away.

“The three proposals link in so well together, I don’t see why we wouldn’t be looking to take them all forward, they need to work together for ultimate effectiveness. Hearing the accolades from the Champs group, hearing they felt jealous of Robert (care experienced young person), how envious they felt of the support Robert received, we need to offer all young care experienced people these opportunities and we need to build on the work and make sure everyone receives the same service… we need to make sure the corporate planning team is integrated, there are so many opportunities just now so all 3 proposals should move forward together” (Sara Lacey, Head of Children’s Services Social Work/Chief Social Work Officer)


“As a partner of Falkirk Council and a Corporate Parent I would be really interested that this [Hug in a Mug] is a collective Falkirk initiative, the added value of all the partners being on board. It’s so important to involve all of our partners – the more corporate parents on board, the more efficient workforce and the more love our care leavers feel” (David Mackay, Head of Education, Children’s Services, Falkirk Council)

“We need to think of this [Heart on Sleeve] as a partnership and think of the whole system; who is supporting staff and who is supporting children and families – this (Relationship First co-design work) would bring it all nicely together, there’s an opportunity in practice and in policy to bring in both the heart on sleeve and hug in a mug service designs together… make it what’s at the heart of our learning… and if we want to really shake things up we could make the videos the policy!” (Jude Breslin, Locality Coordinator, Children’s Services, Falkirk Council)

Actions people took away included:

1. Integrating this work with improvement planning – “This all chimes so well with the work we’re doing, we need to do work quickly to integrate with improvement planning early for the coming year”.

2. Sharing the message behind this work more widely “We should maximise the impact that we can achieve via these fantastic videos and smart thinking behind them. This is all about improving ethos and practice, whilst working as Falkirk Council teams across all agencies. This should not be seen as extra work but essential quality assurance of service delivery”.

3. Sharing the service design videos more widely“I’m going to share the videos with the whole staff team in the Falkirk Council Education and Training Unit as I know many of them will be keen to identify themselves as corporate parents, as well as nurture champions”.

4. Leveraging opportunities through strategic planning “We need to making these messages the core messages in induction materials and all of our learning and development opportunities”.

5. Leveraging opportunities through recruitment “We need to think about capacity, how we can integrate the expertise of the co-design team, we’ve got MCR pathways, Family Firm – how can we bring together all these approaches using our systems thinking”.

6. Leveraging opportunities through learning and training “I think we can look at some of the staff learning and training pretty quickly. Asking all teams to watch the videos and having key info on the practitioner’s pages. We could also link the existing group and the Children’s Commission Rights and Engagement Group to coordinate developing this approach further?

7. Continuing to work together“This methodology is certainly at the fore of our thinking, we’re using similar design tools and working towards using cooperative approaches, I think we could learn from you and keep dialogues and open to learn and grow together” and “We’re trying to develop a whole new approach to services, that group might be where this work continues to develop from”.

Thanks go to Jude Breslin who invited us to present and organised the session for us.