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How PRISM by The Lens Is Harnessing Digital Community-Building and Championing Innovation Among Frontline Carers

Lewis McLachlan

PRISM by The Lens empowers frontline carers using the Community Lab platform to innovate home care solutions through training, resources, collaborative support, and pitching events.

How PRISM by The Lens Is Harnessing Digital Community-Building and Championing Innovation Among Frontline Carers

How PRISM by The Lens Is Harnessing Digital Community-Building and Championing Innovation Among Frontline Carers

Today we're inviting you to engage with the pilots being carried out on Community Lab around Care Sector Reform — an area in urgent need of innovation.

Dumfries & Galloway Health & Social Care Partnership are working with The Lens (a charity focussed on intrapreneurship) and their PRISM  programme to support those working in social care to develop solutions that will help their fellow citizens live well, at home, for longer.

The PRISM approach goes beyond simply asking for ideas. It takes the training, tools, support and access to resources (including funding) to the coal face by empowering small groups of carers to design, pitch, and implement their ideas.

One element of the course is an Investment Day, where these groups pitch for funding. We have been lucky enough to attend two of these transformative and inspiring days and they are like no other pitching event I have ever attended. Forget Dragons’ Den. Forget the toxicity that arises when peers become competitors for funding.

All the ideas are aligned in purpose — how do we help vulnerable people live well, at home, for longer? They know there is not one answer to that challenge. They take joy and share in the success of others in their cohort. They actively work together, supporting each other to become braver, more ambitious, and take their idea on that next step of a shared journey.

The feeling of empowerment and resilience in the room is palpable. I have never cried so much at the joy of seeing amazing people shuffle off the shackles that can make them feel impotent and helpless to life’s fates and tell a room full of powerful people what needs to change.

The video below  gives a flavour of the pilot.

A photo of a man presenting at an Investment day, hosted by The Lens.

So far, the D&G pilots have captured 17 pitches, all can be seen in the showcasing group. The plan is now to open this concept up to all care workers and carers in Dumfries & Galloway — that is 15,000 people — then look at scaling the concept across Scotland.

Imagine that. Sharing ideas from Dumfries to Durness, exchanging lessons learnt in Lerwick to Lesmahagow. An empowered, decentralised health and care sector driven by those doing the work, converting their knowledge into services that meet the needs of those they serve.

A headshot of The Lens' CEO, Steve McCreadie.

"What if there was a way to identify and develop ground-breaking ideas that would not only help to improve services, but also help organisations future-proof themselves?

What if there was a way to do this that empowers existing staff and communities — upskilling them and building their confidence in the process?

And what if all of this could be achieved with low risk? "

– Steve McCreadie, CEO at The Lens

So to THE ASK….

Here is a link to a showcasing of the 17 ideas. Similar to any startup they are vulnerable. They need support — developing and challenging their ideas and thinking, accessing markets, building resources and resilience, finding funding. Can you help? If so, jump into the group and let them know.

The Lens also want others to share and build ideas. Remember it is a common purpose that ties this cohort together — not the prospect of unicorns.

If you have an idea that you think could help citizens live well, at home, for longer, why not explore the project and even create a post in the group?

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