Lesley was part of the Calling Cumbria team that created the forerunner of Total Place. The project was about reconnecting the public sector to the various communities it served through relationship building and doing real work together to discover what was really important to the people of Cumbria.
The work was very practical, interactive and fun. Through a process of Inquiries, groups of people from diverse backgrounds were drawn together through common interest and curiosity to find out what citizens thought about public services and what they really needed and wanted
The inquiry team, made up of citizens, senior managers and politicians went out together in mini buses to visit various places in Cumbria – some went to oder peopl’s centres, others to centres for people with special needs whilst others spent time in cafes and shops talking to whoever would talk to them.
Great conversations happened and our inquirers found out more than they ever imagined they would, gathering great stories from local people. These stories were the key to unlocking new insights, not only into how services were currently delivered, but also into how different they could be.
Perhaps the greatest discovery was how positive and energised everyone became through working together to better understand what citizens need and want, and to put their voice at the heart of everything.
Read the Calling Cumbria report