At our first advisory board meeting for the Councillors and Care research project, we asked everyone to share one way that they hoped that the project might make a difference for councillors. 

Here is what they said:

  • I hope this will equip councillors to be more confident and not just default to an expert  
  • Hope this will give councillors a range of options and new things to try that will fit their own circumstances 
  • I hope councillors will understand that it’s not easy for everyone will access services  
  • I hope it gives councillors more information to help people  
  • Hope this will give councillors a positive way to talk about adult social care so that everyone can see the benefits  
  • The project will spread the reach and raise awareness and information for how councillors can be involved and give support in the community – making adult social care more accessible 
  • Increasing councillors’ confidence – to see social care as about life not just a service – broaden our sense of what good looks like 
  • Councillors will be able to conduct themselves and communicate so that social care will allow people to live their best lives 
  • The project will allow all councillors to have confidence to challenge and that any councillor that everyone speaks to will know what to do 
  • Hope that there will be a useful toolkit 
  • Would like to see a more holistic and joined up approach that’s not political – more awareness out of their bubbles 

Councillor Joanne Harding, our board chair, summed it up as:

  • Greater knowledge, confidence, understanding and awareness so it’s not just about just older people in residential care homes  

It’s interesting to see the word ‘confidence’ come up several times. Perhaps this reflects the fact that adult social care is an area where ‘expertise’ is more dominant than in other areas of council business? It is certainly an aspect for us to keep thinking about.

Images: Laura Brodick at

Original source – 21st Century Public Servant

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