Bridge the Gap

From August to October 2021, the review team hosted a series of events called ‘Bridge the Gap’ working with expert facilitators from Community Co-Lab.

More than 200 participants took part in the events, which were a way to bring people from many different backgrounds, both lived experience and professionals, together in the same virtual room to think about potential solutions to the problems in children’s social care.

The sessions were run using an open spaces approach – with participants deciding what topics to discuss and allowing people to take charge of the process and talk about what mattered to them

The launch event, ‘Connect’, took place at the end of August, followed in September by a series of themed ‘explore’ sessions for smaller groups (kinship, foster carers and adoptive parents; young people and adults with lived experience of care; birth parents and workforce members).

The final ‘Create’ event in early October brought all participants back together to discuss firm ideas on how to build a better children’s care system.

Community Co-lab produced a series of reports to summarise the discussions and the potential solutions put forward during Bridge the Gap:.

We held four Explore events – read the reports here:

Create, the final participatory event in the Bridge the Gap process, was attended by nearly 100 participants from across children’s social care. The purpose of the event was to identify and explore solutions to the themes raised in the Explore events.

Below, you can find a visual overview of the background to Bridge the Gap, as well as the main problems and potential solutions raised in the sessions.