“Who better to do it than people who use services and carers?”

—Member of Service User & Carer Involvement Group (SUCIG)

This Good Practice Guide was commissioned by Scottish Social Services Learning Network West in collaboration with Learning Network South East. It is based on research conducted in 2008 and commissioned by these Learning Networks to explore the extent of service user and carer involvement in the Higher and Further Education sectors in west and southeast Scotland. The research showed that the involvement of people who use services and carers in all aspects of social work training is at an early stage. You can read more about the research in the Research Base section.

Through this Guide we hope that good practice can be shared and lessons learned for the benefit of both social work and social care education.

The Guide has been developed by the Scottish Consortium for Learning Disability, written by Lisa Curtice and edited by Jan Murdoch. Members of the Training Sub-Group of the Service User and Carer Group (SUCIG) in Glasgow took part in two workshops to plan and comment on the Guide.

The Guide is divided into six sections:

Background information about the Guide
The Essentials of Engagement
An overview section that summarises the main barriers to better engagement, key good practice components and also the benefits. In this section we present the model of good practice that is illustrated throughout the Guide.
Agreeing the Basics
Three areas are identified as a precondition for involving people who use services and carers: a statement of shared values, policies on recognition and payment and training, preparation and support for service users and carers. These should be developed jointly between teaching organisations and services users and carers.
Effective Engagement for Service Users and Carers
This section contains material for and by people who use services and carers. Members of SUCIG give their top tips to people thinking of getting involved and describe their own experiences of contributing to training. Read this section to find out what works best for the people who matter most.
Effective Engagement for Teaching and Learning Organisations
For the benefit of staff involved in planning and delivering learning opportunities for students, this section follows the different stages of course development.
Useful Contacts and Resources
Organisations that can provide further information and assistance and sources of useful materials are listed at the end of the Guide.

Continuing Support

Printed copies of the manual from which this online resource is derived can be obtained from:

Adelphi Centre
12 Commercial Road
Glasgow G5 0PQ

Email for further information, or download PDF version.

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