A maze

Detangling the maze: How might we improve signposting to services for young people?

By Kathryn Dingle 4 April 2022 4 minute read

Do you use Google and online directories to get help, to find fun things to do? Have you ever found difficult to know where to start? Do you usually end up with exploring multiple websites and feeling lost by which is right for you?

NPC and others are exploring how we might improve this journey for young people.

The problem

Navigating local service information online can be difficult, overwhelming, and confusing for young people particularly those with additional needs. ​ It’s often hard to know where to start, find clear information and find the most suitable option to meet their needs and goals.

Our vision

Our vision is a for a world where young people can access support and opportunities, as easily as they can access information from commercial settings.

​Our objectives

This project seeks to make it easier for young people to find help online, regardless of where they are based in the UK. As an overall programme there are two aims, to explore options for improving connectivity to services that builds on existing work such as Open Referral UK and to create a sustainable and united approach to doing this.

Our research question

How might we improve signposting to services so that it is easier for families and young people to get relevant help and as a result, reduce harm and improve outcomes?

Other questions may include

  • How might we increase the availability of good quality charity service data to organisations, regardless of capacity and skills and reduce duplication?
  • How might we influence the inequalities that already exist for both charities and young people if this method is successful?
  • How might we ensure ownership and sustainability for the solution?

Our plans

We want to take a step back and understand local charity services processes. We want to know: what processes generate service information and what information do they need from other services?

We will do this by connect to existing work and working in partnership to:

  • explore how different models are working in practice and highlighting successful models for improving signposting
  • explore how might we improve and build on existing models and technology
  • prototype new ideas that would support greater availability and accuracy of local service information

Get involved and have your say!

We are creating a collaboration around this, so please get in touch if you would like to be updated and/or involved in the project. We want to hear from organisations working in this space, and charities who signpost as part of their work.

Ways to engage:

  1. Get in touch with the team to be involved in the project: kathryn.dingle@thinkNPC.org
  2. Point us in the direction of existing technology, processes or resources that already look to solve this challenge? We know there are lots!
  3. Share your thoughts about the problem and potential solutions – comment below or email the team
  4. Sign up for interview – we are looking for small and medium size charities to explore what processes generate service information and what information do you need from other services? Email the team to book a slot via kathryn.dingle@thinkNPC.org