The Children’s Trust works with children with brain injury and neurodisability. For a number of years, it had received a “good” rating from both the Care Quality Commission (CQC) and Ofsted. It wanted to improve its services in order to gain “outstanding” ratings.
To reach this goal, the charity decided to gain ISO9001 accreditation, an internationally recognised, independent quality assessment, through CHKS, a provider of healthcare intelligence and quality improvement services.
One of the key changes that it made was to better involve the children it works with in order to ensure their voices and opinions were heard.
This included inviting service users to attend trustees’ meeting and take part in workshops on how they can be involved in making decisions about the charity. Children and families are also now involved in the recruitment for key posts through a young people’s interview panel and ask their own questions with support from a moderator.
The Trust also now has a youth worker, so that children feel more comfortable voicing their views.
In addition, it has put more emphasis on involving the young people in meetings about their therapy, rather than just speaking with parents.
All these changes helped contribute to the charity gaining its ISO9001 status. It has also achieved its goal of getting “outstanding” ratings from Ofsted and the CQC.
Charity Awards judge Chris Michaels said gaining ISO accreditation was “no easy process” and it was clear the charity had undertaken a hard, painful journey of structural change in order to create a platform for the highest standards of care and greater input from its beneficiaries.
Judge Andy Pitt added that the Trust deserved recognition for making a deliberate decision to pursue excellence. “I like this focus on the internal piece and getting that right because then your outcomes, in theory, should follow.”
CC Reg no. 288018