Giving people a voice to influence positive change in health and social care

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Healthwatch Dorset

Project case study (2021-2022)

Making health and care better for young people in Dorset

Making health and care better for young people

We gave young people in Dorset the opportunity to directly influence improvements in the health and social care services they use.

Between January and May 2021, we recruited and trained a group of young volunteers aged 16-23 to become Young Listeners.  They designed and delivered a peer-to-peer engagement project to explore the issues that are important to young people.

In June and July 2021, they met and ‘listened’ to 70 young people from across Dorset.  They heard about the barriers and challenges young people face when seeking care and support, and the changes they want to see to make services work better for young people.  In November 2021, they reported their findings to Dorset’s health and care decision makers and made recommendations for how to improve services for young people.

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“The incredible work completed by these young people talking and working with their peers in order to support their voices being heard and to shape future services is a huge achievement and we welcome this Young Listeners report. If we really want to see the outcomes for all of our children improve we know that we will do that much more effectively by working every day in co-production with our children and young people and their families.”

Theresa Leavy

Executive Director for Children’s Services (Dorset Council)

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We have an excellent track record for delivering independent, cost effective and impactful Healthwatch services for local authorities across England.

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