Praxis is a charity providing practical, legal and emotional support for migrants and refugees. The organisation strives to centre the voices, experiences and needs of people with lived experience of the immigration system in all of its work and puts collective action at the heart of its approach and ethos.
Praxis has recently published a new organisational strategy for 2021-2026, with a commitment to systematically embed shared decision-making with experts by experience—people with lived experience of the immigration system—in its campaign work. As part of this new strategy, Praxis commissioned NPC to develop a framework to help embed co-production values and practices into its No Recourse to Public Funds (NRPF) campaign.
NPC worked closely with the campaign team; experts by experience; Praxis’ CEO, Sally Daghlian; and Praxis’ trustees to understand the organisation’s existing experience of co-production and user involvement, as well as any potential challenges and opportunities for embedding this into the NRPF campaign. By reviewing existing briefing materials, such as the campaign development framework, we got a sense of the context for the NRPF campaign. These insights helped frame our approach and highlighted key areas for discussion, including how co-production might interact with the organisation’s culture, ways of working and unique identity.
We then facilitated two workshops—one with experts by experience working on the campaign, and one with members of the campaign staff team, members of the senior management team and Praxis’ trustees. As part of these workshops, we explored the tensions and trade-offs inherent to co-production, such as the liability for legal issues, and we discussed what this kind of approach might look like in practice for Praxis.
Based on this learning, NPC developed a framework to support Praxis’ implementation of co-production into their NRPF campaign. This framework outlines key roles and accountabilities for the campaign and is designed to help Praxis plan co-production and establish effective decision-making processes. Central to this, is the space to discuss the rules that co-production must operate within and the responsibilities for user-led and staff-led activity. This framework provides a foundation for transparency and mutual understanding, as well as clear expectations about how the relationships between staff and experts by experience will work.