Health and Social Care and The VCSE Sector Engagement Events

“A friend for life” is how Ronald Bloxham describes North Norfolk health volunteer Richard Fry.

Improving the health and wellbeing of local people

We want to tell you about an important development that we hope will be a step-change in how we work with public services, and provide you with an opportunity to influence the development of Norfolk and Waveney’s five year plan for health and care.

See below for details of a series of events we’re organising – we hope to see you there!

Creating a five year plan for health and care in Norfolk and Waveney

In January 2019, the NHS published its Long Term Plan setting-out how it will make services fit for the future. Every health and care partnership in the country is now developing five year plans covering the period to 2023/24, setting-out how they will deliver the ambitions of the NHS Long Term Plan and their local priorities.

As voluntary organisations, community groups and social enterprises, we make a huge contribution to the health and wellbeing of people living in Norfolk and Waveney. We help to keep people healthy, well and active, support them when they’re ill and care for them at some of the most difficult points in their lives. We are incredibly proud of what we achieve as a sector every day.

It’s essential that our contribution is captured in the Norfolk and Waveney five year plan for health and care. Whilst the national plan is clear about some of the changes that need to happen across the country, there is plenty of scope for local ideas and actions. So we need to share our experiences and put forward our ideas for how we can improve the health and wellbeing of local people as the Norfolk and Waveney plan is developed and then finalised in November.

To help develop the plan, local health and care organisations have already begun collating what the Voluntary Community and Social Enterprise (VCSE) sector have previously told them about services, including the feedback from the VCSE events held when the Norfolk and Waveney Sustainability and Transformation Partnership was set-up.

There’s information below about how you can help to shape the five year plan below.

Setting-up a Voluntary Sector Health and Social Care Assembly

But we need to be thinking beyond November and the creation of the five year plan. The role of the VCSE within the emerging Integrated Commissioning System (ICS) is key, and we have now an opportunity to work much more closely with local health and care organisations, this means we could:

  • Do more to improve the health and wellbeing of local people
  • Start to address some of the challenges facing VCSE organisations
  • Build our resilience as a sector and help to make our work more rewarding for staff and volunteers

To enable this we are exploring the development of a Voluntary Sector Health and Social Care Assembly, so that VCSE groups and statutory services have a collective interface – in place to enable us to better plan for the future together.

In other parts of the country, having an assembly has given the VCSE sector an opportunity to discuss priorities with statutory services and to make real improvements to people’s health and wellbeing.

We are at the start of developing this idea – we know that creating an assembly will take time, and needs to be built on the skills and experience of everyone involved. We are committed to developing a shared understanding between all partners that will inform how an assembly could work, and we need VCSE organisations of all sizes to be part of these discussions from the start.

Over coming months, Voluntary Norfolk, Momentum, Community Action Norfolk, Community Action Suffolk and the statutory partners of the Norfolk and Waveney Health and Care Partnership will support the development of the assembly and engage with the VCSE sector. You can learn more about the assembly on the STP website.

We need your input in developing Norfolk and Waveney’s five year plan and our assembly

We have organised a series of VCSE events to enable you to hear more about the development of the five year plan, share your thoughts about what should go in it and discuss the role that the VCSE sector could play.

There will also be an opportunity to discuss ideas about how an assembly could work to enable us to plan for the future alongside our statutory partners and learn more about how you can get involved.

The events will be held on:

  • 15 October, at the King’s Centre in Norwich, 9.30am – 12pm – sign-up here
  • 16 October, at the King’s Centre in Great Yarmouth, 9.30am – 12pm – sign-up here
  • 28 October, at the Kirkley Centre in Lowestoft, 1.30pm – 4pm – sign-up here
  • 31 October, at the Town Hall in King’s Lynn, 9.30am – 12pm – sign-up here

Can’t come to any of the events? Want to have your say on the five year plan?  

Join the online conversation to share your ideas about how we can make Norfolk and Waveney a healthier place to live, and to see what other people are saying too.


Jonathan Clemo, Chief Executive, Community Action Norfolk
Alan Hopley, Chief Executive Officer, Voluntary Norfolk
Christine Abraham, Chief Executive, Community Action Suffolk