Third sector

Public Social Partnerships

Public Social Partnerships (PSPs) are voluntary partnerships involving one or more organisations from the public and third sectors, and potentially from the private sector. They are designed to involve the third sector earlier and more deeply in the design and commissioning of public services.

We have invested more than £3.5 million in six strategic PSPs over the last seven years.

Successive 'Developing Markets for Third Sector Providers' contracts from 2012 to 2017 have included support for six strategic PSPs:

Low Moss

Low Moss prison is working with the third sector to change the approach to reducing reoffending in both the prison and the community. The Low Moss PSP is designed to offer holistic and person-centred support, from sentencing through to pre-release, on-release and after-release community support, which is co-ordinated by a known and constant 'Pathway Practitioner' who is a member of a multi-agency team.

Strathclyde Partnership for Transport

The West of Scotland Community Transport Network was launched in March 2013 as a partnership between the Strathclyde Partnership for Transport and community transport organisations throughout the West of Scotland. Its aim is to improve the quality, capacity, capability and co-ordination of the community transport sector.

NHS Lothian

NHS Lothian, the City of Edinburgh Council, Queen Margaret University and the third sector identified the programme to redevelop the Royal Edinburgh Hospital campus as an opportunity to work together through the PSP model to redesign services.

Their first project, the Wayfinder PSP, was such a success that a further three projects are now underway - titled GameChanger, Greenspace Artspace, and the Rivers Centre - which are beginning to change the way that health services are delivered.

East Renfrewshire Health and Social Care Partnership

The East Renfrewshire HSCP identified the PSP approach as the best way to respond to the Self Directed Support agenda, which seeks to enable people with learning disabilities to have choice and control over their care and support arrangements. It is incorporating both national best practice and innovative, locally focused models of care to transition from a traditionally focused, mixed-service provision to a provider-only model for Supported Living.

Glasgow - The Life I Want

The Life I Want PSP aims to modernise day services in Glasgow for adults with learning disabilities. It is both a response to the Self Directed Support agenda, and a recognition by partner organisations that services need to change to meet the needs of the people who use them.

The PSP involves various workstreams, including:

  • delivering training programmes to a range of stakeholders
  • exploring social enterprise opportunities and connecting with existing social enterprise activity across Scotland
  • developing and piloting appropriate service options based on feedback
  • bringing key stakeholders and people with learning disabilities together to ensure their needs and aspirations are reflected in the work of the PSP


The Elevate-Glasgow PSP works with people recovering from drug and/or alcohol dependence to give them the best possible chance to turn their lives around and contribute to their communities. The PSP contributes to delivering the following national and local priorities:

Elevate-Glasgow works to maximise employment, training and education opportunities, to reduce the number of adults in recovery who are unemployed, and to make a positive impact on the health and wellbeing of Glasgow's communities.

We commissioned a report (published May 2018) which looked at the progress of the Strategic Public Social Partnership Model in Scotland. See the research findings.



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