Expert Citizens is a Community Interest Company led by and for people with lived experience of homelessness, mental ill- health, addiction, domestic abuse, poverty or histories of offending behaviour. In combination we call these multiple needs. Through the INSIGHT awards we want to celebrate examples of positive or and outstanding practice. We have identified four key characteristics that we believe to be fundamental when delivering, managing, planning and commissioning services. Whilst these are relevant to everyone accessing services, it’s our view that a conscious effort is needed by individuals and services to apply these principles in the context of people experiencing multiple needs. These characteristics are intended to apply from frontline to the board room. As such, people can be nominated from any level of an organisation or as an independent practitioner or professional.
The characteristics in the four key categories are:
The nominee welcomes people with unconditional positive regard, ensuring a warm and safe environment with a focus on their own individual needs and consideration of their historical context.
The nominee actively listens to those who they welcome into their service; they listen to identify individual needs as well as assets and coproduce a method of support that works well for the individual.
The nominee welcomes opportunities to learn from people experiencing multiple needs and makes changes in the way they work as a result of actively seeking to learn what works well. They make improvements in areas in which things don’t work so well for people experiencing multiple needs.
The nominee has tried new ways of working and can evidence what works well in supporting people with multiple needs: they share their positive and best practice with colleagues, organisations and services to enable others to better welcome, listen and learn from lived experience.