Portway Reference Group March 2009 Summary

Feedback summary from the Reference Group discussion in March 2009 for the Portway Lifestyle Centre.

Discussion event about the Portway Lifestyle Centre Reference group.

Wednesday, 4th March 2009 at Tividale Community Centre.

We asked: “What should the Reference Group look at?”

You told us, overall, you agreed the Reference group should look at:

  • what the centre will deliver
  • the timetabling of activities available
  • providing advice on accessibility

You also said:

The Reference Group should agree the “Terms of Reference” with the project team; it shouldn’t be set in advance!

Members of the Reference Group could be champions for the Portway Lifestyle centre, helping us to understand how we can communicate with the wider community more effectively.

The Reference Group could look at what other centres are doing and share good practice and ideas across the country.

The Reference group should be fair and equal - communication or accessibility needs would need to be met to make sure people could participate fully.

We asked: “Who should be part of the group?”

You told us it should include:

  • People who use day services
  • The voluntary sector
  • GP patients
  • Carer representation
  • Link to Children’s services/parents

You also said: “The Reference group should reflect different ages, abilities and cultures.”

We asked: “Have we missed anything?”

You told us:

Some people who want to join in the reference group might need to bring along a carer or a support worker to meetings, but they shouldn’t speak for them!

The reference group might need to meet up with people from the “virtual group” now and then, to feed in wider views.

You also had some ideas and suggestions for us to think about!

  • Will there be opportunities for disabled people who take part in the reference group to “coach” leisure staff about accessibility and communication issues?
  • Will the reference group have a say on issues such as having a sensory room within the centre for people with complex needs?
  • Can we visit group meetings, events and planned activities to explain about the reference groups, particularly gain more interest in the virtual group?

What we will do next

  • We will start to set up the reference group, taking into consideration what you have told us.
  • We will keep you updated on progress, and hope you will support our engagement activity by telling others if you are part of a group or network, and sharing information with people who may use our services!
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