Powerful Partnerships – Self Management Week 2016

Written by: Marianne Brennan, Partnership and Practice Programme Development Officer (Self Management), the ALLIANCE

Published: 26/07/2016

Marianne introduces the key theme of the 2016 Self Management Week - Powerful Partnerships.

At the beginning of June, I joined the Self Management Partnership and Practice Team based within the ALLIANCE. Part of my role is to explore what the wider understanding of self management across Scotland looks like, and to create a stronger voice and share best practice of self management work.
Working in this team I have had to dive in and immerse myself in the principles of self management. Self management can be different things to different people. For me, it is about people living with long term conditions being empowered, and having the choice, control and confidence to live a healthy and fulfilling life. Self management is not a replacement for services, it is about working in partnership with health professionals to achieve the best possible outcomes for each person.
Self management can sometimes be a daunting term, however it is about learning first and foremost about yourself and using this knowledge to choose how you want to live and be aware of who should be involved to support you to maximise your potential. It’s about putting the person in the driving seat. In this way, supported self management is a core component of achieving truly person-led care.
In this new role, I have the opportunity to speak to many organisations that are already steering the way and carrying out fantastic work by encouraging and supporting people to self manage. Through hearing many inspiring stories from people who have embraced the self management journey, it’s become clear to me that I have moved to the right team.
Each year, the team host ‘Self Management Week’, this year running from 3- 7 October. The week aims to highlight self management, the benefits it can bring to people’s lives, and to promote best practice throughout Scotland. This year’s theme is ‘Powerful Partnerships’.
Partnerships are made every day – connections between  people and organisations can transform lives and help people to self manage, and we want to celebrate these partnerships. With new partnerships formed through integration and integration going live for all health and social care partnerships from 1 April 2016, it seems a very fitting theme this year. More so than that, it’s important that people are aware of how a powerful partnership can bring huge benefits, and partners working together have increased potential to reach wider audiences, share expert knowledge and create more dynamic resources.
‘Self Management Week’ is for everyone. During the week the Self Management Network Scotland will be hosting events to build new connections, share learning and make the voices of people living with long term conditions and carers even stronger. The week is an opportunity to spread the word about how powerful self management can be for those who embrace it and to share this learning with others. It is important to recognise those whose work is influenced by the principles of self management.  This is why we are encouraging everyone to get involved.
On Thursday 4 October we will host the annual ‘Self Management Awards’. The awards are now in their sixth year and have been created to showcase those who transform their lives through self management, as well as organisations and projects that make a difference. This is your chance to celebrate the people and organisations who have made a difference in your life. If you know someone who deserves to be recognised for their contribution, what’s stopping you nominating them?
This year there are six awards, including ‘Innovative Partnership Idea of the Year’. This brand new award is due to an awareness that an emergent and novel service/training/resource may not actually exist yet but the idea may. If you have a partnership idea that you are passionate about, we’d love to hear from you.
There is a lot of work going on in the lead-up to ‘Self Management Week’ and the Awards, and I look forward to bringing to light the powerful partnerships that exist in your life and make a difference to you.

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