Planning children's services: a model of engagement

This document provides a model of engagement for developing children's services plans.

Views of Adult Duty-Bearers on the Pilot Process

Following Event 3 adults were asked for feedback on the process via a short online survey. Again, this was to support reflection on the model and its potential for continued community engagement with children and young people. In summary, adult respondents said:


Positives about the approach

Respondents highlighted the direct involvement of children and young people in the events and the creative, fresh engagement methods used. Respondents appreciated the mixed grouping of staff from different sectors and partner organisations as they felt this added to discussions. Respondents highlighted that there was a clear focus on children during the events and that the energetic and relaxed atmosphere allowed open, meaningful conversations.

"Getting to spend more time with the children and young people was a real advantage especially for strategic level staff who - sadly - don't get time for face to face work with children!"

It was felt that there was a real connection between the different sectors, partners and children and young people, a willingness from all to be actively involved and that this could be built on for future activity and engagement.

Ideas for future approach

When asked if there was anything they would have changed about the approach, respondents suggested the following:

  • Shorter events or providing breakout spaces, as respondents noticed that some children and young people appeared to get tired half way through the day.
  • Less tasks to allow more in-depth discussion, especially to explore and understand topics such as what it means to be cared for by adults and what it means to be listened to.
  • Write-ups of what children and young people said expressed in their own words and more vivid documents.
  • Using varied settings for future sessions to encourage a more equitable process i.e. adults in schools, children at Waverley Court or third sector offices, using local facilities rather than just city centre venues.
  • Continue to encourage involvement of more diverse groups of children and young people.
  • Developing a shared online community to allow adults to ask young people questions or seek their advice.
  • For the Edinburgh 2050 Vision, tracking the progress of children and young people involved in the 'Holyrood baby' project.

Future Involvement

Respondents welcomed the opportunity to facilitate future events, take forward actions arising from events and use the information gathered to inform planning. It was recognised that incorporating children and young people's engagement as part of core business and strengthening partnership working is important. Respondents support the development of an approach that involves children and young people in service development and planning, uses creative engagement techniques, demonstrates how we listen to children and young people and celebrates their achievements.


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