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Creative ways of engaging and involving residents

Our aim at Lewisham CCG is to reach and engage with or involve as many residents as possible. We understand people have different preferences depending on age, background, interests, access to the internet etc. Our main focus is on the value of face-to-face conversations, but at the same time we recognise the power of new technologies for communication and involvement. We are constantly devising new and creative ways to gather your views and reach groups of the population who we don’t hear from as much. 

Our ethos is that every interaction counts, every single resident has the power to support and further disseminate our health messages, and every voice must be taken on account when reporting and sharing experiences.

We have tried different approached to improve our reach and support engagement. From Forum Theatre at our AGM, to bringing to life our Use the Right Service campaign – a more interactive way to brush up on where to go for health advice. We also designed an MOT survey to facilitate conversations about Men’s Health during the Downham Celebrates Festival, with inner (mental wellbeing) and outer (physical wellbeing) checks for our visitors. We used the same MOT concept, adapting the survey to all, during our presence at People’s Day 2018. There we also had a gigantic birthday card to celebrate the 70th birthday of the NHS. We always think of our younger residents: children are our future and while engaging with them we can talk with their parents/carers. From free drawing competitions which promote a healthy lifestyle, to Father’s Day cards with prevention messages. See a summary of some of the things we have done to involve our residents during 2018/19.

Videos are also a great way to bring messages to a wide range of residents. We have prepared films to explain and promote our GP Extended Access service, and also to disseminate messages for malaria prevention. We have used films as a way to summarise some of our Governing Body meetings, and to support people to engage with our review of Interpreting and Translation Services.

Online surveys have been really useful to gather your views on important issues during local consultations, but we always keep in mind that not everybody is online and some people prefer paper surveys and easy read materials.

We use social media (Twitter and Facebook) to share messages with residents. In 2018/19 this has been an efficient way of reaching people that we wouldn’t normally. For example messages we promoted around Use the Right Service and the Working together for a healthier Lewisham event were seen by hundreds of thousands of residents. 

There are many other ways to get your opinions, and there are still sectors of the population we hear less from. We would like to hear your creative ideas.

Tell us what you think. How can we efficiently reach and involve more people? Email your suggestions to