Developing a Carer Engagement and Participation Framework (NSW, Australia)
The client and background
Stride is Australia’s longest serving mental health provider and helps over 17,000 people to access the support that they need for their mental wellbeing.
Stride provides services to people at all stages of their mental health journey, from early intervention services, designed to support children, young people and adults at-risk of developing mental health conditions, to services for people with ongoing and complex needs.
They are committed to supporting people wherever they are in their journey and working with them to help to create the life they want.
Engaging with people involved in mental health services and programs is essential to understanding whether Stride provides the right experiences and achieves positive health outcomes for Consumers.
In 2019, Stride developed a Consumer Engagement Framework. It outlined Stride’s approach to Consumer engagement and the opportunity to involve Consumers to ensure policies and programs meet their needs and address the specific values, cultures, and attitudes of the people Stride serves.
However, meaningful engagement involves understanding the perspectives and experiences of all people engaging with Stride. Carers are key support people in the lives of people with ill mental health and often act as advocates for their loved one. They play an essential role in supporting Consumers in their recovery journey.
In June 2020, Stride appointed Rebbeck to develop a Carer Engagement and Participation Framework to guide why, when and how they engage with Mental Health Carers in an ongoing way to meet their needs and improve mental health outcomes.
The impact of our work
Rebbeck consulted with Stride staff members, Carers and Consumers to understand the needs of Carers and how they should be engaged by Stride
Rebbeck developed a practical framework, informed by consultations with staff and carers and review of best practice literature. The framework provides guidance on how Stride will engage with Carers in following domains: governance, people and culture; consumer service delivery; carer service delivery; service design; and feedback and improvement.
For each of these domains, Rebbeck identified the needs of Carers, the opportunities for enhanced engagement, the method for engagement and a series of recommendations that Stride should undertake to achieve their vision of best practice Carer Engagement.
This framework will enable Stride to engage with Mental Health Carers in a positive and meaningful way.