West Dunbartonshire LinkUp

What was the issue you were addressing or working on?

LinkUp is integrated community navigation, signposting and direct support service which uses a single telephone point of contact to enable the streamlining of referrals to, from and between the key community and third sector agencies in West Dunbartonshire thereby helping to support older people maintain their independence at home and in the community.

The service is based on the ‘Village Agents’ model which aims to help local residents quickly and effectively make contact with and be referred to a wide variety of local community and third sector agencies.

What you did?

LinkUp is based on a co-production model and has four main component parts:

  1. A dedicated telephone contact helpline number manned by a team of trained volunteers giving local older people and their carers the opportunity to access information on the availability of targeted services provided by the third sector throughout West Dunbartonshire, e.g. lunch clubs, transport services, social activities etc.
  2. A shared assessment process between the key third sector service delivery partners to ensure that the needs of clients and their carers are assessed holistically rather than service-specifically at the point of contact increasing the likelihood of continued independence. This includes ensuring that those with caring responsibilities are informed of their rights to a Carers Assessment and are appropriate referred for support.
  3. A shared workforce development and training programme between key third sector organisations to ensure that all partners are fully aware of the issues affecting the client group and able to make appropriate cross-referrals to and between services maximising the benefit for the client, their carers and the efficiency of the delivering agency.
  4. Longer term the development of new/expanded range of chargeable and non-chargeable service specific ‘products’ to meet the demand of older people and their carers supplied by the third sector on a social enterprise model as highlighted through the phase one cohort research conducted during 2013.

What were the outcomes - benefits or otherwise?

Since its launch in January 2013 the service has received 93 calls. As the service is still in its infancy it is unable to provide detailed stories demonstrating the impact of the service on user outcomes. As the service develops this case study will be updated to include stories of service users.

Contacts - to find out more

Frank Gow, Care and Co-production Lead, info@wdcvs.com

0141 941 0886