Community Engagement

We have a duty to inform, consult and involve people and it is vital that we do so because they pay our wages!

The benefits to you of a sound approach to engagement is increased satisfaction, efficient processes that are tailored to meet peoples needs and high quality services. We need to encourage active engagement and provide different, tailored ways to make it easy and interesting for our communities to get involved and shape how they want their services to be delivered.

We can support you in this.

YCChange offers a wide range of techniques that encourage active engagement. We have extensive experience in running community focus groups, but we are much more interested in sharing with you new skills and expertise.

We offer the Open Space technique which is a very relaxed way of engaging, where people can input to discussions as and when they choose – if they have said what they wanted to say, they can leave. With this technique the community themselves own the recommendations for improvement – and so building the capacity to deliver improvements themselves.

Their “knowledge and practical application of the Open Space process allowed the Board to work together and develop a number of ideas which will be instrumental in the future development of the Community Development Forum (CEF), a Forum working to create better links with the community.”

Janette Barlow 
Head of Service - Customers and Business Support
Selby District Council


We also support the use of Social Media. Many people are into communication and expressing their opinion through Facebook, Twitter and also via text. We can help you maximise the opportunities that technology faces – and this does not just mean engaging with younger people, but with a wide spectrum of our community. Information and engagement via the website is also key. We can work with you to challenge the material you have on your website, its quality and its ease of access for all.

We can help build skills in the community so that your communities can support and improve services themselves. We set up Community Engagement Forums and work with them to develop their own action plan.

We bring together people in the local community, along with partners such as the police, fire and rescue, health, housing, the voluntary and business sectors and the local authority to work together to improve neighbourhoods. We work hard to ensure that engagement mechanisms are interactive.

We also train members of the community to become mystery shoppers and to test out the quality of services, how easy they are to access, the quality of information and the extent of opportunities for engagement. We have our own tenant mystery shoppers who can support you in regularly testing the customer experience of interacting with you as well as them supporting you with training your own mystery shoppers.

Taking action as a result of customer experience is the key to improvement. Your commitment to listening to feedback, taking action and investing resources is key to success.

“YC Change's understanding of community cohesion/ empowerment, the targets of the Local Strategic Partnership, and providing Local Community Action Plan options, has been very helpful as we continue to discuss what steps our Local Strategic Partnership may wish to take in the implementation of this study.”

Ian Wolstenholme, Head of Partnerships, Richmondshire District Council

We can help

• Community Action Planning
• Wide range of techniques to support engagement with those who may be ‘hard to reach’ such as Open Space, Community Cafe, Focus Groups, creativity through use of cameras, murals, vox pops etc
• Social Media
• Tenant, Resident and Customer Training to become Mystery Shoppers, Estate Action Officers, Contract and Performance Management and Scrutiny


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