We’re looking for organizations seeking to foster agency as part of their community health strategy. As I mentioned in a recent post, we’re keen to apply our work into practice so that we can both coach local entities to improve their health efforts by fostering community agency, and learn what it really takes to make the shift to the ways of working that we advocate for.
To that end, our aim is to establish consulting relationships with up to five organizations by the end of 2017, with a view to starting work in 2018. We’re open as to which sectors these ‘organizations’ come from – payer, provider, public health, employer, foundation or a community-based organization – as we believe any and all such organizations have a role to play.
If you’re interested in an exploratory discussion, please do get in touch.
Applying the 12 Principles
We have some early discussions on the go with a health care provider, a public health department, a payer and an employer. All of them understand that focusing solely on risk factors – whether personal or social – is not enough. Indeed, all of them are honest about the decades of failure they have endured in trying to help communities be healthy.
These ongoing discussions build on ones we’ve had over the last year or so in which similar organizations have asked what it would look like to apply the 12 principles to foster community agency to their community health work. We’ve now packaged our thinking into a four-part process:
- Understanding your community health strategy, including desk review of key materials and learning from the core community health team, and planning the process for parts two to four
- Getting a sense of how ready the organization is to embrace the importance of community agency through interviews and facilitated self-assessment with internal and external stakeholders, culminating in a report on where it’s possible to start, where further work is needed, and suggestions for how to proceed across both
- Envisioning what’s possible by sharing the suggestions from part two with key stakeholders through facilitated workshops, with a view to generating and prioritizing strategies and actions
- Capturing next steps with the core team to help them develop an implementation plan for the prioritized strategies and actions
It’s important to note that we’re not suggesting new strategies be developed. We believe it’s possible to apply the 12 principles to existing community health work to develop evolved strategies that align not just with the personal and social risk factors but also the well-documented importance of agency to health.
Although we’ve mapped out the steps in each part, we’re conscious that the process will differ from place to place. The above, therefore, should be seen only as an initial description of the process as we see it; it can change as we get into the details of what’s needed.
We’re looking for ‘up to five’ organizations because, as well as work locally, we want to explore ways for these organizations and places to learn from each other. Quite how we’ll do that will depend on the five organizations and how their team members and partners want to engage with each other, but we’re clear that cross-site learning will be generative and motivating.
Get In Touch
The core team involved in the work will be myself, my Co-Founder and our Chief Delivery Officer, Bridget B Kelly, our Chief Learning Officer, Margaret Hawthorne, and our Consulting Partner, Lori Peterson of Collaborative Consulting. If further skills are needed, you’ll be able to tap into Collaborative Consulting’s wider network of talent.
We’ve costed the process outlined above and are looking for organizations that are committed to investing in this work, both to the benefit of the community where they work and the wider field.
If you’re one such organization, please do get in touch.