Huge boost for community involvement in personal care budget launches

Published at 10:00 AM on 11 February 2014

  • Proved in trial, now extended across UK, could potentially increase care visits by 25% for over 640,000 elderly and disabled people
  • Programme can work across the UK, empowering communities to improve social care

Developing Empowering Resources in Communities (DERiC) and Big Society Capital (BSC), the social investment bank, today announced the launch of an innovative programme to utilise personal care budgets which will greatly improve existing service levels for people with social care needs through community engagement.

PwC are business strategy advisors to DERiC under the Cabinet Office’s scheme to provide support to social enterprises’ commercial development and business planning.

Despite the UK’s ageing population, the numbers of people getting essential support in their home has actually fallen in the past five years, leaving an estimated one million people without any help. As a result, care services are there to respond to crisis rather than provide the support needed to prevent vulnerable individuals from reaching crisis point, which is a classic scenario for social ‘bridging’ investment.

DERiC will be providing expertise to, and investing in, community organisations specifically formed to deliver support to local people who receive personal budgets. The help that people receive will be supplemented by Community Supporters, local people who wish to put something back into their communities.

People will be able to have greater choice about the support they receive, there will be more of it and it will release money for the community to invest as it sees fit. In practice, most communities will spend any money released on supporting less vulnerable people and preventing them needing statutory help.

A trial of the DERiC programme by Leeds City Council showed a dramatically increased contact time of 25%, which particularly improved social inclusion.

DERiC will invest a £1 million loan from Big Society Capital in seven different programmes: four in Leeds, one in Sandwell, one in Belfast and one in Medway, covering a total population of 200,000 people, 3,000 of whom will be eligible to receive statutory social support. The aim of DERiC is to provide support for at least 60% of those within the next three years.

In addition to the 3,000 people who will be served by the programmes that DERiC invests in, a further 1,500 people who are not currently eligible will be supported in the identified communities, using the money that will be released.

640,000 elderly and disabled adults currently receive state-funded home care(1). If the scheme was rolled out across the UK, the potential savings could reach more than £1 billion, whilst increasing the scale and quality of social care. It is DERiC’s intention to raise further funds for investment in similar projects over the next 5 years.

Leeds City Council has been a pioneer of the programme, supporting the trial, and now leading the charge towards national scalability.

Councillor Adam Ogilvie, Leeds City Council’s executive member for adult social care, said:
“An increasing number of our service users here in Leeds have been telling us that they want to live as independently as they can in their own homes for as long as possible. A crucial part of us helping them to do that is giving them more choice and control over the care they receive as well as the support they need to manage their own care budgets. The DERiC programme is a great example how we’re finding innovative new ways of accomplishing that and the results of the initial trial were very positive.”

Mark C Graham, director, PwC said:
“The scheme is ambitious, and a big win for all communities involved. It offers a model for commercialising a simple idea with benefits for the people receiving care, their communities and local government spending. Training volunteers will bring consistent standards and a better service, and the benefits, both financial and social, stay within the community.”

Nick O’Donohoe, CEO of Big Society Capital, said:
“The elderly and vulnerable may not always receive the care they need due to a system under strain. Social investments are making it possible to raise the standard and depth of care for the vulnerable in our communities. We are determined to see more programmes like this across the country and will be working closely with Leeds City Council to ensure that all local authorities understand what can be achieved through accessing differing sources of funding.”

Ritchard Brazil, Programme Manager of DERiC said:
“Engaging with the community has meant that vulnerable older people have become much more valued and local people who are Community Supporters – trained and supported volunteers – have been able to use their involvement to develop further their expertise and skills, which will be of real use to them in other settings or opportunities.”

Ends.

About DERiC
DERiC is a Community Interest Company (CiC) that operates as a Social Investment Finance Intermediary (SIFI), raising funding from a variety of public and private sources and investing these funds to achieve:
• The development of new and innovative forms of community owned social enterprise
• The delivery of outcomes which improve peoples’ lives and enhance community control and engagement
• Better use of public funding
• Innovative use of commercial funding.

DERiC were advised and supported by specialists from PwC’s social investment and enterprise team, who worked with DERiC to create a business plan. PwC are accredited to
provide support to social enterprises under the Cabinet Office’s Investment and Contract Readiness Fund. The fund enables organisations developing services for their community to access professional services to support their business and commercial planning.

About Big Society Capital:
Big Society Capital is the world's first social investment bank. BSC formally launched in April 2012, with an estimated £600 million of equity to be paid-in over 5 years, of which £400 million will be from unclaimed assets left dormant in bank accounts for over 15 years and £200 million from the UK’s largest high street banks.  Big Society Capital seeks to support the growth of a social investment market in the UK by revolutionising the way in which the social sector is funded. Through supporting the growth of social investment finance providers, BSC will improve access to innovative forms of financing, and connect the sector to capital markets

(1) An Overview of the UK domiciliary care sector, UKCHA

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