Nesta launches £15,000 prize for innovative social programmes to increase their impact
Innovation foundation Nesta has launched a £15,000 prize for practitioners running innovative ‘good help’ programmes which have the potential to transform public services across the country.
The Good Help Award will recognise teams or organisations that are taking a creative approach to helping people manage and overcome a range of issues – from long-term health conditions and homelessness to unemployment and special educational needs.
Shortlisted entrants will be judged after a workshop with Nesta and leaders in the field on how they can increase their impact by developing their model, upscaling in their local area or sharing their approach with other organisations nationwide.
A Good Help Award of £15,000 and two further prizes of £5,000 each will be awarded to three organisations who can demonstrate the most potential for increasing their impact, to be spent on developing their approach.
The Good Help Awards follow research by Nesta and Osca (a social impact hub) into social programmes and public services that offer effective help (2). The report Good and bad help: How purpose and confidence transform lives found that organisations who helped people to make long-term changes focused on increasing people’s sense of purpose and confidence, so they were motivated and supported to take action.
In contrast, bad help involves practitioners attempting to fix specific issues ‘for’ people, without taking into account people’s motivation or wider circumstances.
Nesta and Osca will identify further examples of Good Help approaches which can inspire other social programmes and offer alternative ideas for how to run public services – and are calling for teams and services to enter the Awards.
Christina Cornwell, Director of Health Lab at Nesta said, “It’s clear that we need to rethink how we are providing many of our public services. Services are set up to help people fix an immediate problem, but don’t enable people to make lasting changes to their lives. The result is that people end up trapped in cycles of dependency, where they need help again and again and services are put under more pressure.
“The Good Help Award aims to identify programmes that are helping people to move forward in the long term, increasing their quality of life, and potentially freeing up capacity to provide good help to more people.”
Rich Wilson, Director at Osca said “The Good Help awards will recognise those projects that are transforming lives by helping people renew their sense of purpose and confidence.
“Mainstream services too often lock people into cycles of dependency from which they find it very hard to get out. This has huge social and financial costs. This award is about recognising those projects which are tackling this through helping people live hopeful and confident lives.
“The Good Help award is about hope. Hope isn’t an abstract idea that is created by chance, it is a product of carefully crafted interventions that build purpose and confidence. Sadly too often purpose and confidence are eroded by mainstream services. That’s why we need an award to recognise the vital work people are doing across the country. Often in tough circumstances, having to go against the grain of service delivery culture.”
The Award is open to anyone offering ‘good help’ in the UK through an established project, programme or service.
The deadline for entries is 18 May, and the winners will be announced at the Good Help Awards celebration event on 13 September 2018.
Enter here => http://goodhelp.challenges.org/