Community champions the project
The main aim of the Community Champion project is to raise awareness of important health and welfare messages in particular local communities (either geographical or communities of interest) where there are health inequalities. The Champions encourage and empower people to make informed choices with a key focus on reaching those with multiple risk factors for poor health.
the local people that bring it to life
We currently have 88 trained Community Champions covering all areas of Kirklees. They are trusted people living and working locally can talk to people about things like the importance of taking part in routine bowel and breast screening, understanding how to prevent conditions like type 2 diabetes, or the risks associated with missing essential check-ups for things like cervical screening.
The Champions are paid for their important work via the 14 voluntary/community organisations who are our delivery partners.
We all work together to support the Champions and the project so that we can continue to reach those people most in need.
How do they do it?
Our Champions have meaningful 1-1 and group conversations. Every conversation is recorded digitally so that we can make the most of any learning, measure impact, and share data with key people to show that it really does work.
It is never a one-size-fits-all approach and whether you are at a community event, a coffee morning , the supermarket or doing your daily school run, you might just bump into a community champion eager to have a chat!
Covering the topics that really matter
The Champions share key messages on lots of really important things, and receive specialist training on each topic to enable them to have impactful conversations.
In 2023 alone they have been trained and worked on;
- Cervical cancer
- Bowel cancer
- Breast cancer
- Relieving pressure from GPs and A&E (particularly in winter)
- Encouraging uptake of vaccines (flu & Covid)
- Cost of living support
- Mental health awareness
- Stop smoking
So much more than conversations
Conversations are a big part of the Champions’ work, but they also identify local needs and action them quickly and efficiently. You would be hard pressed to find anyone else who could set up 8 new diabetes peer support groups or 15 community pop up vaccination clinics in a matter of weeks!
And in addition they are:
- trusted and often already known to people
- speak 18 community languages
- understanding, compassionate and approachable
- have a great awareness of barriers; cultural, language, time etc
- often have lived experience
- great at signposting people for further support
- have a real desire to make change
- not afraid to feedback the honest stuff for our learning
- thoroughly lovely people!
how many people have we reached?
Here’s a quick summary of the total number of conversations from just some of our campaigns:
- Diabetes – 3285
- Cervical cancer – 2588
- Bowel & breast cancer – 1879
You’ll find details of our in-depth campaign evaluations in the Resources at the bottom of the page, including facts, figures and other important information.
We’ll add details of other ongoing campaigns, such as asthma and winter immunisations, as soon as we have them, but if you want to know more, please get in touch.
“Community conversations” groups for an even bigger reach
To make sure that key health messages reach specific inclusion groups we aslo recruit smaller VCS organisations who work with those groups to deliver Community Conversations. They do this via their existing activities or by developing new ones, and they also scope out and help us understand any specific needs or gaps in provision.
To find out more about Community Conversations – see our short animated video below in FAQS.
- Smaller community groups can apply to run Community Conversations to help get key messages out into their community.
- Individuals who’d like to be Community Champions can contact their local Delivery Partner or TSL Kirklees to find out more.
- Partners who’d like to fund Community Champions to help raise awareness or deliver key messages to particular communities in Kirklees can contact us
- Or perhaps you’d like a Champion to come to an event you are having to talk to your attendees?
We welcome discussions so please do get in touch
Who are the current delivery partners?
The delivery partners are all local third sector organisations and many of them are also Community Anchors. These organisations employ and manage the Community Champions that work in their area. Both the Anchors and the Champions work with local GPs and health colleagues within a particular Primary Care Network (PCN). They also work across with council colleagues across a particular ward.
You can download the current list of partners below:
how do I become a community champion?
Anyone interested in becoming a Community Champion should contact their local Delivery Partner, don’t worry if you don’t know who that is, just get in touch and we’ll point you in the right direction, Steffi Rogers
What are community conversations?
Other smaller charities and community groups can take part in delivering Community Conversations campaigns with their existing groups and service users without employing Community Champions.
Find out more about Community Conversations:
- Together We Can Resources – from the West Yorkshire Health & Care Partnership
- Follow Kirklees Health & Care Partnership on X (Twitter)
- Follow Kirklees Health & Care Partnership on Facebook
- Follow UK Health Security Agency on X (Twitter)
- Government Update on Scarlet Fever and Strep A (for parents)
- Watch videos about Community Champions projects
- Community Champions Programme Overview December 2022
- Community Champions Mapping (by PCN & Ward)
- CLiK Survey Project Report 2022
- Winter Messaging Feedback Summary 2022/23
- Digital Inclusion Survey Summary Report June 2022
- Community Champions Evaluation Presentation March 2022
- Health Inclusion Group List
- Summary of Previous Projects