Consistent and lasting success of the 7-Step Pathway, in diverse community settings over the following decade, led to collective thinking that this relational way of working with communities may hold solutions to some of the ‘wicked’ problems of Health Inequalities, which have evaded the NHS for decades.
This led to the opening in 2017 of the Wellcome Centre for Cultures and Environments of Health, at UoE where C2 principles are used to guide the Beacons Transforming Engagement programme seeking to understand how transformative community engagement creates the conditions for health across the life course.
Although governance is separate and funding independently procured, the ‘quid pro quo’ has always been that C2 provides a receptive community research setting with residents as partner co-researchers, while UoE, led by Prof. Katrina Wyatt and Dr Robin Durie provide pro bono academic input on C2 Experiential Learning Programmes. Intellectual Property Rights are shared.
Excitingly, on-going research is working with C2 National Network to map connectivity in two new neighbourhoods Stoke and Dartmouth. This project will explore whether and how relational approaches can lead to better health in very low-income neighbourhoods. Working with our partnerships this research will also respond to C2’s own aim to explore ways of developing regional delivery mechanisms and develop an evidence base for this new approach.
The recently completed DeStress project is a perfect example of how ‘engaged research’ within C2 community settings has enriched outcomes.
DeStress sought to understand issues around the medicalisation of poverty related distress resulting in over use of anti-depressants. Residents became highly effective community partners to the academic team, and amongst many other outcomes produced new training resources for GP’s, adopted by RCGP, including films and waiting room posters.
Hear their voices at the concluding and powerful DeStress London conference where they made huge impact as keynote speakers alongside strategic mental health providers.