We are committed to meaningful conversations with people, on the right issues at the right time. We believe that this approach informs the ambitions of our partnership - to work in an open and transparent way with communities.

Our draft communications and engagement strategy sets out our principles for communications, engagement and consultation and our approach to working with local people. Engaging and communicating with partners, stakeholders and the public in the planning, design and delivery is essential if we are to get this right. We are committed to transparency and meaningful engagement in our work.

In November 2017 this year we updated our engagement and consultation timeline – setting out our plans to engage on the West Yorkshire and Harrogate priorities and also the engagement and consultation timelines relating to each of the six local places. New work will be added to the timelines as the programmes develop. Please note these may be subject to change.

We want you to help us to plan, develop and improve services by sharing your views and experiences.

You can get involved by becoming a representative on one of the priority work areas. See below for more information.

If you would like to know more, have your say about any proposals or find out about our upcoming engagement and consultation activity, please contact us by emailing westyorkshire.stp@nhs.net or calling 01924 317659.

Our work with the community and voluntary sector

Working alongside our communities is an important part of our partnership - seeing the people we serve as assets. Working alongside local communities, ward councillors, council colleagues, voluntary community organisations and many others is essential if we are to fully understand the real value of early help and self-care. There is a wealth of expertise across West Yorkshire and Harrogate and communities are better placed than us to know what they need and to make positive change happen. If we are to genuinely work alongside communities as equal partners, then we need to change our relationships and build trust. We have good leadership from the voluntary sector, and we are attracting support from Healthwatch, NHS England, Nurture Development and National Voices to help us to think about our next steps.

To make sure our work adds the greatest value possible and supports existing projects and groups across the area we started with a number of design workshops in the summer. The aim of these were to agree a shared set of principles and a common understanding of what we mean by ‘communities doing more for themselves’, ‘co-production’, ‘asset based community development’, ‘co-design’ etc., and what the shared ambition for working with communities should be. This includes: co-produce and co-design an approach with communities

Work with programmes to ensure good voluntary and community sector representation on all of our work streams

Inspire NHS senior leadership to be ambassadors for the work

Consider how the services we commission and procure might improve the economic, social and environmental well-being of the area in commissioning and contracting across West Yorkshire and Harrogate.

Raise the profile of and share the excellent work taking place across the area - celebrate the difference this is making in our communities on a regional and national level.

It’s important to note that we are the beginning of this work, and are building on the good work to date – further sessions will take place over the coming months with communities.

Our work with Health and Wellbeing Boards

We are developing our plans around how we will engage and consult with people and how it will work across the future planning process and the role of the Health and Wellbeing Boards.

There are Health and Wellbeing Boards in Bradford, Calderdale, Kirklees, Leeds, North Yorkshire County Council and Wakefield.

Health and Wellbeing Boards are made up of key leaders from the health and care system. They work together to improve the health and wellbeing of their local population and reduce health inequalities. Members work together to understand the needs of local people, agree priorities and encourage organisations who provide care to work in a more joined-up way.

The six local plans vary, there is a great deal of diversity across our area, but at their heart they have the same common themes. Three of the priority themes identified in the West Yorkshire and Harrogate draft plan proposals run deep through all six of our local delivery plans. Prevention, supported self-care, primary and community care services - all of which are better delivered at a local level.

Joint Health and Overview Scrutiny Committee

We will also work with the West Yorkshire Joint Health and Overview Scrutiny Committeeto agree the mechanisms for engagement and any necessary consultation.

Our work with Healthwatch

We work closely with Healthwatch which is the 'consumer champion for health and social care'. Healthwatch has statutory powers to ensure the voice of the consumer is strengthened and heard by those who commission, deliver and regulate health and care services.

Throughout July and August 2017, Healthwatch Bradford and District worked on behalf of local partners to create a conversation with local people about the future of health and social care. You can read more about this here.

Patient & public representatives

We are looking to recruit patient and public representatives to be part of our priority work areas to ensure a fair, impartial and transparent process and bring patient and / or carer knowledge and experience to each of the priority areas.

All you have to do is read our patient and public representative role description. If you feel this is something you would like to do and have the time to commit to this role then please complete the two forms below and return to the address or email provided on the expression of interest form.

We look forward to hearing from you.

Lay Member Reference Group

We have established a West Yorkshire and Harrogate, Public and Patient Involvement (PPI) Lay Member Reference Group made up of lay members from our 11 Clinical Commissioning Groups. This group provides support to our communication and engagement activity, helping to make sure that we act in accordance with our legal duties. A similar approach is being considered for hospital non-executive directors.