Mid Essex Home-Start Consortium includes Home-Start Chelmsford, Home-Start Maldon and Home-Start Witham, Braintree and Halstead.

The three schemes worked together to secure a Big Lottery Fund grant to support families with young children in mid Essex who are dealing with a wide range of issues including isolation, low self-esteem, mental health and disability.

Independently, the Home-Start schemes offer similar services to local families but also face similar challenges, such as dealing with the impact of public sector funding cuts. Following the success of their Big Lottery Fund grant, the consortium was keen to explore the potential for further work together in future.

Steve Allman was commissioned by the mid Essex Home-Start consortium to conduct a strategic review in two parts; firstly to summarise the collective impact of the mid Essex Home-Start consortium and, secondly, to determine its strengths, challenges and opportunities.

The review, funded by the Essex Community Foundation, engaged funders, commissioners, staff and trustees and the final report included a full strategic review with recommendations.

Kath O’Byrne, Scheme Manager at Home-Start Maldon, shares her experience below:

“We found Steve to be knowledgeable, professional and approachable throughout the whole strategic review process, from planning through to implementation. He demonstrated a clear understanding of Home-Start and worked with us to design a strategic review process that met the objectives agreed with Essex Community Foundation.

Steve managed the consultation process effectively and ensured that a wide range of stakeholders were involved. He demonstrated a diplomatic, positive and analytical approach throughout, enabling us to benefit from his objective insights into how our Home-Start consortium can work together to improve the service we offer families in mid Essex, both now and in the future.”

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