60 second interview with Tim Armstrong
The Angus Community Planning Partnership is currently working with the Project to explore ways to strengthen the involvement of the third sector in their local Children’s Services planning and delivery.
We talked to Tim Armstrong, Head of Children and Young People in Angus Council, about his ambitions and why he thinks collaboration is important.
Q. What is that you’re hoping to achieve through this Project? What are your ambitions?
A. My ambition for the project is two-fold. I’m hoping the project will help strengthen the representation of the third sector in our planning structure, so the representatives are well placed to make informed and creative input to strategic planning and commissioning. I’m also hoping the project will nurture an environment where third sector organisations, big and small, feel confident that they can work in collaboration and play a major role in prevention and service delivery.
Q. Why do you think it is important to engage with the third sector?
A. We are working in a constantly changing climate which includes recent changes to policy and legislation. We are all facing budgetary pressures with increasing need and demand for services. The only way that we can achieve the best outcomes for children and young people in Angus is by working closely together and by maximising the use of our valuable assets. The third sector has great potential. For example third sector partners can reach communities where the public sector doesn’t necessarily have contacts or connections. Third sector organisations also play a critical role in early intervention by providing support to families before they require social services. By working in partnership, we can address collective challenges and barriers that potentially limit our contribution.
Q. What do you think is needed to make this a success?
A. I think it needs a collective effort from both the public and third sectors to make this work. The skills and experience in the third sector are enormous. At the same time, the sector is diverse. Therefore it is very important that we have the support from the Angus Third Sector Interface. They play a significant role in co-ordinating, supporting and enabling the sector to become an effective partner. We need all public sector partners to acknowledge the role and contribution of the third sector. By doing this we can move towards making sure that partnership working is embedded at each level of services planning.