East Northamptonshire Council (ENC) has teamed up with Lakeside Healthcare and Volunteer Action to provide residents in Oundle and the surrounding areas with access to a range of services in one place
The new scheme, Connecting Services, aims to assist members of the local community and provide residents with access to advice and a host of different services, without having to travel.
Residents will be able to speak to ENC’s customer service team about a number of council services, including planning applications, council tax, benefit maximisation, debt advice, food banks, pest control and waste. As well as Volunteer Action, who can offer advice on blue badge and attendance allowance applications, provide community transport and a befriending service. These organisations are located in Fletton House which is next door to the Oundle surgery, making it easier for residents to speak to various organisations in one place.
The scheme was established to support GPs – who are seeing an increase in the number of appointments that aren’t solely health-related. Through the scheme, GPs and reception staff within each service can assist directly and navigate residents by identifying which service can best offer support. Residents will be given a referral card and directed to the right place.
Leader of East Northamptonshire Council, Cllr Steven North, said:
“We are delighted to be working with Lakeside Healthcare and Volunteer Action to provide a central hub for the local community that will offer our residents with a number of services in one place. We hope this scheme will develop into a successful partnership where ultimately our residents will benefit in all areas of their lives.”
Prof. Robert Harris, Chief Executive & Managing Partner, Lakeside Healthcare Group said:
“By working more closely with our local government and voluntary sector colleagues, we will offer a more supportive, more comprehensive and more effective package of health, care and valuable information services for our patients and local citizens. This will help a great number of people in our area.”
Liz Holland, from Volunteer Action, said:
“Partnership working is the way forward for everyone. Knowing who to ask for a particular service can be a challenge and this scheme will make that easier for everyone. We are very pleased to be part of it.”