Charity Awards 2024

Cumbria Community Foundation

A partnership approach to independent living

Cumbria Community Foundation’s Neighbourhood Care Independence Programme (NCIP) has delivered £1m in public sector savings and helped almost 30,000 vulnerable adults and older people in Cumbria to maintain their independence.

By 2012 unprecedented pressure on resources and Cumbria County Council budget cuts were impacting on services. There was recognition that a new and innovative approach was needed in order to develop a sustainable solution. Contracting with sole delivery organisations was no longer the answer.

The Council needed an independent organisation to run an £860,000 per annum programme for an initial three years, targeted at adults at risk of losing their independence. With a proven track record in managing strategic grants programmes and the ability to convene partnerships and attract and secure additional resources, Cumbria Community Foundation (CCF) was selected for the role. It facilitated a partnership of 33 voluntary sector delivery organisations but offered a single access point to beneficiaries.

By the end of the first year, one in eight of the county’s older residents had used NCIP services. Independent evaluation of NCIP by the Institute of Public Care at Oxford Brookes University found that 95 per cent expressed satisfaction, with over 80 per cent very satisfied. The evaluation also concluded that NCIP “is contributing effectively to reducing and delaying the need for health and social care”. CCF says that the most positive lesson was the scale of benefits resulting from delivery partners working together, both for their clients and themselves.

Awards judge Danielle Walker Palmour described it as a “great example of working collaboratively with a whole range of people”.

CC reg no: 1075120