The Working Better (WB) was a 3 year ESF funded programme under the "Innovation, Transnational and Mainstreaming" section of European Social Fund.
The Working Better Programme consists of a consortium of partners along with Merseyside Expanding Horizons who are the "accountable body" for the funding.
The working Better programme ran from mid-2009 until March 2012, the project was then successful in gaining a further years funding running until March 2013.
The working Better programme seeks to provide support to individuals who are workless and align employment and health services to support individuals who are both workless and have long term work limiting illness.
The working Better programme is to focus upon:
- Providing independent advice.
- Developing improved links and working with health providers, particularly GP's.
- Promoting and supporting return to employment pathways.
- Bridging health and employment support provisions.
- Intensive and longer term interventions.
- Community based delivery.
The working Better programme seeks to develop:
- New engagement mechanisms.
- Closer partnership working.
- New, more effective referral mechanisms; plus
- Embed and test mentoring as a theme.
The working Better programme is committed to and has developed a robust and solid transnational dimension, each partner having an individual European partner that works in the same field, to visit and share best practices, an example is the Social Innovation Fund (SIF) of Lithuania who are experts in mentoring and have shared best practices around differing mentoring practices with a number of the Working Better partners.
The working Better programme was designed to address:
- The fragmentation of service support.
- The perceived lack of connectivity between organisations.
- The need to provide a seamless continuum of support.
The WB programme seeks to engage with:
- Long term workless
- Persons suffering from physical and mental health
- Persons with learning difficulties.
- People suffering substance misuse
Main activities and themes
- Promotion of "mentoring" as an underlying theme
- Creating improved and innovative links between relevant partners.
- Developing a GP referral model.
- Promotion of new cultural and professional insight for partners based on work carried out through the transnational theme.
- Providing a seamless pathway of care and support for the target groups.
- Engaging with health and employment services to create more effective and holistic support for the target groups on a mainstream basis.