Kent Catalogue of Innovations
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Welcome to the first edition of the Kent Catalogue of Innovations. It showcases the most recent innovative projects and practices from across the county. Read on and see how local innovators have......

Welcome to the first edition of the Kent Catalogue of Innovations. It showcases the most recent innovative projects and practices from across the county. Read on and see how local innovators have changed the way they do business and created a better customer experience.

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  • 1. Kent Catalogue of Innovations
  • 2. Welcome to the first edition of the Kent Catalogue of Innovations. It showcases the most recent innovative projects and practices from across the county.
  • 3. Welcome to the first edition of the Kent Catalogue of Innovations. It showcases the most recent innovative projects and practices from across the county. Read on and see how local innovators have changed the way they do business and created a better customer experience.
  • 4. Welcome to the first edition of the Kent Catalogue of Innovations. It showcases the most recent innovative projects and practices from across the county. Read on and see how local innovators have changed the way they do business and created a better customer experience. If you would like to see innovations featured online, please click or if you need help reading the presentation, please click
  • 5. Click on the hyperlinks to go to the innovation or go to the next page to see more innovations Furniture Project Fastrack Cutty Sark Partnership Creative Innovation Award Creating a Sustainable Community Co-procurement Councillor Kitbag Councillor Call for Action Pilot Comparative Deprivation Index Compact Operating Room Communities of Practice Collaborative Tender Children’s Services Portal Cheriton Drop In Carbon 8 Systems Better Homes, Active Lives Air Quality Monitoring Activmobs
  • 6.
    • Gateways
    • Geocaching
    • Greening the Gateway
    • Headspace
    • Healthy Business, Growing Business
    • Home Working
    • Initial Teaching Training
    • Job Swap
    • Kent Bus Tracking System
    • Kent Car Share
    • Kent Card
    • Kent Housing Benefit Group
    • Kent TV
    • Kent Waste Partnership
    • Lean Benefits Provision
    • LAA Data Room
    • Medway Managers Toolkit
    • Micro Portable Power Centre
    • No Use Empty
    Click on the hyperlinks to go to the innovation or go to the next page to see more innovations
  • 7.
    • Safer Food, Better Business
    • Service User/Carer Involvement
    • Sevenoaks Kaleidoscope
    • Simulation to Support Learning
    • Solution to Means Enquiry
    • Stanhope Estate Regeneration
    • Streetwise
    • Sustainable Roadshows
    • Systems Availability
    • Taktix
    • Teen Engagers
    • Telehealth
    • Testing the Use of Texting
    • Thanet Community Portal
    • TN2 Community Centre
    • Toxinet
    • Voices of Thanet College
    • Ward Walk
    Click on the hyperlinks to go to the innovation or go to the next page to see more innovations
  • 8. Activmobs Activmobs are small groups of residents who carry out physical activity together on a regular basis. They choose their own activity and the project supports them to continue with that activity. Activmobs are an example of co-creation. Co-creation brings the service or product user so close to the designer or provider that the boundaries become blurred. After the successful prototyping of Activmobs, funding was obtained from the Communities for Health programme for further development. There are now 30 mobs ranging from working on allotments and singing to football and golf, with around 400 people involved. A website has been launched and KCC is working with colleagues in the NHS to develop Activmobs for more therapeutic and rehabilitative purposes.
    • Benefits
    • Is self organising, through the provision of simple tools, without the need to go through the filter of an organisation.
    • Builds on the assumption that activity is most effective when driven and sustained by individual motivations
    • Activity is placed within the context of people’s everyday lives rather than in formal putting settings.
    • Kent County Council
    • Mark Lemon
    • Click here to find out more
    “ Enables people to carry out the activities that suit them rather than making assumptions about what people will want to do.”
  • 9. Air Quality Monitoring The Kent and Medway Air Quality Monitoring Network was formed in 1996 and has developed to be one of the few centrally co-ordinated ambient air quality networks in the UK. The Network provides information on air quality to the Kent local authorities and the public every day by way of its website . The data also underpins the air quality review and assessment process that local authorities are required to undertake as part of their duties.
    • Benefits
    • The monitoring network was established as a way of working in partnership to achieve a cost effective means of providing a continuously updated accurate picture of air quality across Kent and Medway.
    • Monitoring locations include strategically important sites representative of large parts of the county as well as sites where data is required for the purpose of local air quality management.
    • Kent & Medway Air Quality Monitoring Network
    • John Smith
    • Click here to find out more
    “ The monitoring network was established as a way of working in partnership to achieve a cost effective means of providing a continuously updated accurate picture of air quality across Kent and Medway.”
  • 10. Better Homes, Active Lives This multi-million pound Private Finance Initiative (PFI) is about to deliver 340 units of new social housing for vulnerable people in Kent. The project has been procured by Kent County Council on behalf of and in partnership with 10 local District Councils. It is one of the largest projects of its type in the country and will receive PFI credits from the Department of Communities and Local Government. The partnership between the District Councils and the County Council has provided a local perspective as well as the strategic capacity to bring stakeholders needs together within a single project. It is regarded as a flagship project nationally and KCC often receives requests for advice from other local authorities who are looking to undertake PFI projects in partnership with their neighbouring councils.
    • Benefits
    • The private sector recognises that the partnership has produced considerable efficiencies in bringing together a number of small clusters of housing from across local authority boundaries.
    • After a year of negotiations, Housing 21 has signed a deal with the partnership between KCC and ten of the district and borough councils in the county to build and run a total of 340 apartments across Kent.
    • Kent councils
    • Christy Holden
    • Click here to find out more
    “ The project has been successful in attracting considerable market interest in an area of PFI which has previously suffered in this respect. ”
  • 11. Carbon 8 Systems As one of the first major spin-out companies from the University of Greenwich, it is not just the innovative capture of carbon dioxide in the work of Carbon8 Systems Limited that is pioneering. The company is also living proof of the potential crossovers between academia and business, and is paving the way for others from the University of Greenwich to follow suit. The company was created as a development of the work of Dr Hills who patented a process using accelerated carbonation technology (ACT) to treat hazardous wastes and remediate contaminated soil. It has won the Shell Springboard 2008 national finals as well as the Kent Innovation Challenge 2007.
    • Benefits
    • Award winning spin-out company in which the University of Greenwich retains a significant stake.
    • Uses accelerated carbonation technology to treat wide variety of hazardous wastes.
    • Green technology that locks away CO 2 while producing valuable aggregates.
    • University of Greenwich
    • Carbon 8
    • Click here to find out more
    “ The research developed by the Carbon8 team has been successfully applied commercially and the future looks bright with a new pilot plant in Kent and opportunities opening up in the US. "
  • 12. Cheriton Drop In As a result of a significant increase in anti-social behaviour and reported crime, the Cheriton Drop-In, Firewall, was set up to engage with vulnerable young people at risk of offending and to provide them with a safe environment to meet, build friendships and address the issues affecting them. Figures suggest that more than 30 young people are now positively engaged in their local community and defying the recent negative publicity.
    • Benefits
    • Statistics suggest that anti-social behaviour is reducing as a result of the project.
    • Already some of the issues affecting young people are beginning to be addressed within Firewall .
    “ The success of the project in such a short time is due to positive relationships being formed and in offering a drop-in provision that meets the needs of many extremely bored young people. "
    • Cheriton Community Forum
    • Ged Stoneman
  • 13. Children’s Services Portal The purpose of this project was to provide Medway Council’s Children’s Services with a secure and structured information portal for establishment details, staff and case related information. This has enabled the improvement of performance management and monitoring information provision for children’s services. The system comprises of a web based user interface, a data warehouse and integrations with back-office data source systems, and holds approximately 20 different types of information from employee salaries to Criminal Record Bureau (CRB) checks – from staff training and induction to staff case loads.
    • Benefits
    • Improvement to standards of supervision and monitoring of staff activity.
    • The ability for staff to share information securely.
    • Improvement of performance management and monitoring in response to the Joint Area Review process.
    “ A centralised repository of relevant performance and management information for managers at all levels.”
    • Medway Council
    • Moira Bragg
    • Click here to find out more
  • 14. Collaborative Tender Kent Buying Consortium established a joint cash collection contract from offices and from car park machines on behalf of all Kent councils. The South East Business portal is being used to help collaborative working by recording details allowing procurement exercises to be combined and to use the documents where others have let similar contracts. Aggregated buying power has generated greater interest from the marketplace. The ability to join at any time allows existing contracts to expire or move from in-house to outsource provision.
    • Benefits
    • Contract performance maintained by pressure on the contractor knowing that failure at one location could jeopardise ability to retain business.
    • Larger value long-term contract encourages investment in the service and improvement over time.
    • 20% saving on sums previously paid for similar services. Other councils have used the contract specification for tendering collaboratively.
    • Kent Buying Consortium
    • Mark Redhead
    • Click here to find out more
    “ By rationalising the service and creating the ability of the contractor to combine the work required better rates were obtained.”
  • 15. Communities of Practice A Community of Practice (CoP) is a network of individuals with common expertise or interests who get together to share knowledge and practice on an agreed theme. You need knowledge to do what you need to do, you need people to have knowledge, you need practice to inform and apply knowledge. Communities of Practice solve these challenges through collaborative tools and engagement techniques. Examples of innovative practice powered by communities include sharing lessons learned from workshops, mapping out research & practice on specific theme and creating “how to” toolkits. It also enables members to participate in job shadowing, call for volunteers, co-design of assessment tools and news of a major conference.
    • Benefits
    • Joined up knowledge sharing and continuity - capturing learning and practice when and where it takes place - to avoid duplication and foster joined up working
    • Better user involvement by enabling frontline staff to provide the tools for users to feedback not only to them but also to each other in real-time
    • Kent County Council & IDeA
    • Noel Hatch
    • Click here to find out more
    “ Professionals could benefit by having a space to put down ideas before they got lost, write down things that have inspired them – say a speaker at a conference, make suggestions and get ideas.”
  • 16. Compact Operating Room As a “hospital in a box”, the Compact Operating Room can be transported in the back of a 4X4 vehicle, allowing procedures to be performed in remote environments, i.e. marine and military sites, oil rigs and sport arenas. As well as being independently powered, changing the medical modules makes the CompactorOR™ uniquely flexible. For example, it can support a maternity clinic one day and then be converted for trauma operations the next.
    • Benefits
    • Represents a new weapon in the fight to preserve life.
    • By providing an independent and long-term solar powered source, it is designed to support a range of medical equipment for extended periods.
    • Voted British Invention of the Year & International Invention of the Year for 2005/6.
    “ It is so portable and mobile, giving it particular efficacy in emergency situations and for disaster relief worldwide.” New Scientist 2005"
    • Global Medical Solutions
    • Alex Bushell
    • Click here to find out more
  • 17. Comparative Deprivation Index The new Comparison of Public Health (COSPH) project involving South East England and Northern France is an “innovation first”. It involves devising an internationally comparative index of deprivation. This enables deprivation and disadvantage to be compared across national borders. In addition, an index of market concentration is deployed to analyse how hospital and health care facilities are used by the local population.  
    • Benefits
    • Greater understanding of the impact and distribution of health inequalities with an international dimension.
    • New ways to measure how health care is accessed and facilities serve populations.
    “ Enables deprivation and disadvantage to be compared across national borders."
    • Kent County Council
    • Mark Lemon
    • Click here to find out more
  • 18. Councillor Call for Action Pilot Tunbridge Wells is the first district council to pilot Councillor Call for Action ahead of the introduction of the Local Government and Public Involvement in Health Act. The purpose is to enhance members’ roles as community leader and champions. It was initiated to inform the legislation ahead of its introduction by Communities and Local Government Department and show the potential issues in a three-tier area. A Community Call for Action enables local councillors, supported by their communities, to demand an answer to their questions when things go wrong. It gives citizens a new right to an answer when they put forward suggestions or demand action from their local authorities.
    • Benefits
    • Creates a single point of contact for Councillors with different services within the Council, partner agencies and the County Council as well as all agencies agreeing to response times for issues.
    • Tunbridge Wells Borough Council
    • Angela Woodhouse
    • Click here to find out more
    “ The main benefit has been creating a single point of contact for Councillors with council services, partner agencies & County Council as well as agencies agreeing to response times for issues.”
  • 19. Councillor Kitbag In response to a request from a Councillor, Tunbridge Wells Borough Council has put together a ‘Councillor Kitbag’. The Kitbag provides a pull-up poster displaying information about Council achievements, a range of leaflets and information and responses to frequently asked questions such as ‘Why does Council Tax always go up by more than my salary/pension?’. The aim of the Kitbags was to provide Councillors with an easy to use resource at the surgeries they host for local residents. They have been specifically designed to be easy to transport and set up. There are three kits available for use, each with a backpack, pull-up poster and box. The leaflets are filed in clear plastic folders and in a straightforward order for the Councillors to quickly locate the information they require.
    • Benefits
    • The recent Local Government White Paper sought to strengthen the role of ‘front-line’ councillors.
    • The Kitbag arms councillors with a range of information about all Council services which equips them to deal with enquiries from constituents quickly and efficiently.
    “ Cllr John Smith, Ward Member for Frittenden & Sissinghurst: ‘It it’s nice to see even relatively small things such as the Kitbag go from an idea to something material…. I learnt things that I didn’t know about the council!’”
    • Tunbridge Wells Borough Council
    • Joanna Davis
    • Click here to find out more
  • 20. Co-procurement Tonbridge & Malling, Sevenoaks and Tunbridge Wells councils identified that they were all looking to purchase a Customer Relationship Management (CRM) system. It was recognised that whilst there may be opportunities to achieve cost reduction through co-procurement, it was also acknowledged that the different councils had varied needs depending on existing back office systems and project timetables. To be successful, it was critical that each council ended up with the most appropriate CRM for their circumstances. Each authority prepared an individual specification to an agreed format. A common approach to evaluation was adopted taking account of each authority’s own priorities. Each Council was able to achieve significant capital and revenue saving over a 5 year period, whilst retaining their own individual contracts with the suppliers.
    • Benefits
    • By adopting a “light touch partnership” achieved significant cost reduction and value for money without compromise to their individual priorities.
    • Future initiatives include shared working to improve customer services across the councils. The partners have agreed key principles to work together on a range of customer services projects.
    • Tonbridge & Malling, Sevenoaks & Tunbridge Wells Councils
    • Julie Beilby
    • Click here to find out more
    “ Our critical success factors will be based on the core premise that any shared activity must demonstrate either significant customer improvement or significant efficiency improvements.”
  • 21. Creating a Sustainable Community A new and innovative protocol has been developed by the Kent Housing Group to ensure that future affordable housing in the County is developed in places where people want to live and work. An objective of the protocol is to ensure all new developments have high quality homes and are proper communities from the start. This means improved design of housing, estates, infrastructure and community support in place before people move into their new homes. The protocol includes a check list to be considered by housing chiefs, planners and developers to ensure the long term sustainability of new housing developments in Kent. The key ingredients for success are based on best practice and local experiences. They include a mix of tenure and income levels, housing & support to meet the needs of vulnerable groups, adequate and well designed open spaces, as well as community facilities and an appropriate mix of adults and children.
    • Benefits
    • Due consideration for how communities will work in the short, mid and long term.
    • Identifies what facilities and infrastructure is available to support the community.
    • Kent Housing Group
    • Rebecca Smith
    • Click here to find out more
    “ The protocol aims to assist in the community having a "sense of place" and encourages relevant staff to consider letting of accommodation and providing links to employment or training opportunities.”
  • 22. Creative Innovation Award The University College for the Creative Arts (UCCA), is running its student award scheme, the Creative Innovation Award (CIA) for a third year. Sponsored by KIA Motors UK, SONY UK, WStore, UCCA Enterprises Ltd and the Student Union at UCCA, the award has two entry categories. The ‘Let’s Move’ competition gives students from any discipline the chance to challenge the conventional conceptions about the design, functionality, image, branding and sustainability of the car. The ‘Ur Idea’ competition gives 3rd year undergraduate students from any discipline the chance to see if a new idea has commercial potential with enterprising opportunities. The winner receives prizes to the value of £2500 including a SONY product and an invaluable assigned business mentor during the second stage of the competition.
    • Benefits
    • The runner-up from 2007's “Ur Idea” competition, Colleen Knox, was commissioned to make the trophy for 2008’s award.
    • Textile student Elizabeth Morrison, was announced as the 2008 winner for having created a new, textile led interior design for a KIA car.
    • University College of the Creative Arts
    • Denise Harmer
    • Click here to find out more
    “ CIA is an exciting opportunity for UCCA students to show off their creative talents & face challenges that should become a valuable experience to help shape their careers in creative & related industries.”
  • 23. Cutty Sark Partnership The use of IT experts at the University of Greenwich to help save the Cutty Sark was awarded ‘Best Partnership London’ in March 2008. Knowledge Transfer Partnerships, a UK-wide programme to help businesses benefit from expertise in neighbouring universities, says “the collaboration between Greenwich and the Cutty Sark Trust has yielded dramatic results”. Professor Chris Bailey and Dr Stoyan Stoyanov in the School of Computing and Mathematical Sciences have been helping the Trust conserve the sailing ship by using software predictions to ensure it is dismantled and restored in the safest possible way.
    • Benefits
    • Professor Bailey says: "We are honoured to receive this award with the Cutty Sark Trust, which recognises the computational modelling expertise at the University and importance of the partnership in rescuing a national icon for the nation. This partnership is continuing with a new project, developing computational tools to help conserve and maintain the ship in the future.“
    • University of Greenwich
    • Dr Linda Hyder
    • Click here to find out more
    “ Research carried out by KTP shows that one business can boost its annual profitsby more than £227,000, create three new jobs and increase staff skills, just as a result of getting involved in KTP projects. ”
  • 24. Fastrack This is one of the most innovative transport schemes yet seen in the country. It is a new rapid transit system that will eventually link Dartford, Bluewater, Ebbsfleet International Station and new developments at Ebbsfleet Valley and The Bridge. The key to the success of Fastrack is significant lengths of dedicated busway and priority for buses at signal controlled junctions. It is the first service of its type outside a major conurbation and is being built and operated ahead of demand to ensure good public transport as the 30,000 new homes and 50,000 new jobs are provided over the next 20+ years.    Fastrack has been the recipient of several awards - ICE Brassey Award 2006 for an outstanding example of a civil engineering project, the Transport Times 2007 Award, a "Certificate of Excellence" from an Interreg funded project, three category wins in the UK Bus Wards 2007 and an award for use of IT.
    • Benefits
    • Increases public transport accessibility for existing communities.
    • Enables regeneration in Kent Thameside, particularly in helping meet housing targets.
    • Provides the frequent, reliable high quality service that will ensure people can ‘get around’ – to work, to school, to play.
    • Kent County Council
    • John Turner
    • Click here to find out more
    “ Whilst three sections of busway have been publicly funded the majority of the final network will be funded through development.”
  • 25. Furniture Project The Furniture Project is the brainchild of the West Kent Housing Association. It is managed by West Kent’s community development charity, West Kent Extra. Its main aim is to provide affordable items for people looking to furnish their home on a limited budget. As a bonus, the project is able to recycle unwanted materials and help the environment. The project collects items from anywhere in the Sevenoaks district, sells them on to the public and tenants of the association, with deliveries costing around £5. There is an expert on hand, who has a workshop on site where he transforms old items of furniture into useable pieces. The site also provides a location for a youth engagement project, working in partnership with Kent Youth Service and with the local Wildernesse School. It is hoped in future to provide vocational training and work experience placements.
    • Benefits
    • Sevenoaks Council pays recycling credits (totalling about £4K annually), as the items would otherwise end up in landfill sites. All income raised by the project is reinvested in West Kent Extra’s community activities supporting children, families & pensioners across Sevenoaks.
    • The scheme provides a small number of jobs for local people and volunteers are always welcome to get involved, to help where they can.
    • West Kent Housing Association
    • Suzanne Smith
    • Click here to find out more
    “ This is a great local resource which we are really proud of and very pleased with the support we get from the district council and from the people of Sevenoaks and the surrounding area.”
  • 26. Gateways Walk through the doors at Margate Library in Thanet and you are greeted by a large desk of several helpful staff. But glance around, and the space – now called Thanet Gateway Plus – actually resembles a department store. Listed in bright colours are the various sections. As well as the usual suspects such as reference library, historical and local studies, public Internet and the Youth Zone. There are also listening posts, service desks, payments kiosks, refreshments and gallery. Thanet Gateway Plus is KCC’s revolutionary way of delivering as many services as possible under one roof. It’s a holistic approach, offering everything from adult education to advocacy, health to housing, and volunteering to victim support.
    • Benefits
    • 60 per cent of visitors are regularly using one or more services.
    • Thanet Gateway Plus is currently visited by 9,000 people each week. In addition, library issues are up 28 per cent
    • Each service desk has chip and PIN machines for bill payments and there’s also a kiosk with touch-screen technology for payments.
    • Gateway
    • Tanya Oliver
    • Click here to find out more
    “ ‘ We have the Thanet Gateway and one in Ashford, without a library. Within a few years, all the big towns in Kent will have one. We’re also introducing a mobile service for rural communities. ”
  • 27. Geocaching Geocaching is a countryside treasure hunt involving the use of handheld global position system (GPS) receivers. Geocachers hide 'caches' - usually waterproof boxes filled with inexpensive treasures and a log book - in locations across the countryside. Once hidden the GPS coordinates of the 'cache' are published on the Explore Kent website for others to view. Other geocachers can use these coordinates and any clues provided to locate the hidden treasure. The finder is welcome to take an item from the cache as well as fill in the logbook to record their find. The development of this idea was carried out in conjunction with a volunteer.
    • Benefits
    • A fun new activity that has proved very popular with the public.
    • A great new way to encourage people to visit the countryside.
    • Families will love the treasure hunt element, while regular walkers will enjoy the added incentive to a day's walking
    • Kent County Council
    • Rebecca Hoffmann
    • Click here to find out more
    “ Families will love the treasure hunt element, while regular walkers will enjoy the added incentive to a day's walking.”
  • 28. Greening the Gateway This is a pan-north Kent approach to providing a strategic framework for green spaces, sustainable access and wildlife corridors throughout the Growth Area and beyond. The idea is to provide a 'green print' for the north Kent Thames Gateway;  developing green spaces and access routes that provide a multi-functional landscape, providing opportunities for recreation, links from urban areas to the countryside and river estuaries, plus improvements to biodiversity, and providing areas for flood mitigation. This approach will provide an environmental uplift and improve the area's image, providing a legacy. The initiative has been developed by Kent County Council in partnership with all the north Kent local authorities and Regeneration Boards and other public and voluntary sector organisations. 
    • Benefits
    • Provides the high level vision and framework for a host of other projects that are working to improve the environment and image of north Kent.
    • Provides the bigger picture for identifying key initiatives that smaller more local projects cannot tackle.
    • Crosses the political boundaries, thinking creatively, bringing people together to tackle local projects and big issues, adding real value.
    • Kent County Council
    • Val Hyland
    • Click here to find out more
    “ The concept has been now been adopted at government level with the Thames Gateway Parklands initiative.”
  • 29. Headspace Headspace venues are a new type of place where young people can chill out, access their favourite books and magazines and be served by ‘Book Waiters’, who will bring them a coffee and a book of their choice!   Kent’s Headspace is located in Folkestone’s [email_address] . Funded by the National Lottery with support from Kent County Council, it is a joint venture between Kent Youth Services and Libraries & Archives. Unlike most of the other Headspace settings, it is located in a Youth Centre rather than a library and therefore has a different feel to it.  Young people are encouraged to volunteer at  [email_address] and are working with library and Youth Service staff to ensure all young people receive a warm welcome. In return, those actively involved are able to gain formal accreditation for their contribution.
    • Benefits
    • Encourages young people to get involved with their local library and develop a role in their community.
    • Young people are in the driving seat, having contributed to the design and chosen the furniture and books for Headspace.
    • Two volunteers have gained paid employment at [email_address]  since the project started.
    • Kent County Council
    • Janet Davies
    • Click here to find out more
    “ Reaches young people who may not initially be attracted to libraries or reading as a leisure pursuit.”
  • 30. Healthy Business, Growing Business This programme is designed to support owners/managers in getting their business into shape, help them manage change and guide them towards growing their business successfully. It brings together business owners and managers (primarily of small and medium enterprises) in the East Kent area and provides an opportunity for professional development and time to focus on specific business needs. It also provides peer networking, access to business support networks and expert speakers as well as interactive workshop sessions. It was initiated due to a need for quality programmes and events for businesses which could become self-sustainable and were not reliant upon external funding. It also provides an opportunity for the University to engage with local business leaders who would not otherwise have an opportunity to build a relationship with us and access our expertise and facilities.
    • Benefits
    • Great contacts with genuine sales opportunities (at least one delegate on the 2007 programme made their course fees back several times over), as wel as credits towards Chartered Institute of Marketing diploma.
    • Optional health check to complete – a chance to focus but no pressure to share information. No need to worry about giving up trade secrets or being asked embarrassing questions.
    • Canterbury Christ Church University
    • Loris Loudon
    • Click here to find out more
    “ The presentations gave not only fresh ideas but also allowed me to give greater thought to how I can make my business grow. It left me feeling hungry to learn more so I have enrolled on next year’s programme.”
  • 31. Home Working The Canterbury City Council Contact Centre was faced with the challenge of meeting staff needs by providing flexible working patterns. This ensures we can achieve a work/life balance and at the same time meet customer and business needs by handling calls during the peak periods. Data analysis highlighted a requirement to have split shift patterns, which would be impractical to implement with office based staff. Following a consultation exercise the project team focused on developing a pilot for home working with contact centre staff. As the pilot produced a very positive outcome in terms of improved productivity, efficiency and motivation, the project was fully adopted and rolled out at the beginning of 2007. Now 20 of the 47 contact centre staff regularly work from home at different times according to needs and requirements.
    • Benefits
    • Three members of staff have been retained through this initiative.
    • There has been an improvement in sick absence by 4% from those staff who work from home.
    • Ongoing productivity gains from staff that work from home consistently shows that they are between 14 – 16% more productive.
    • Canterbury City Council
    • Cathy Eastwood
    • Click here to find out more
    “ Scheduling staff to work from home during heavy snow enabled us to provide a call centre service that would not have been possible if we did not have the home workers.”
  • 32. Initial Teacher Training This was established as a project to build partnerships between the University and museum/library/archive venues in the region. The Museums Libraries and Archives Council (MLA) were keen to develop links with teachers at the earliest stage in their careers, and the University was looking to provide opportunities for student teachers to investigate learning in non-school settings. Five university teacher education tutors spent up to two days in a particular museum, library or archive setting, exploring its potential for learning and for student teacher placements. The MLA staff attended a number of meetings at Canterbury Christ Church University to discuss the project, culminating in an opportunity to meet the student teachers who would be placed with them. Student teachers prepared for the placement by designing a research focus for an assignment on learning across and outside the curriculum.
    • Benefits
    • “ I was surprised by how enthusiastic I was about getting involved – now I am raring to do my own exhibition in class. I saw potential in everything – spaces, objects, paintings – if you can use if creatively.” (Participant)
    • “ It was a real eye-opener. It helped us to realise that we are quite forward thinking and we are thinking ‘outside the box’ more than we realised. I’ve really stepped outside some boundaries this week.” (Staff)
    • Canterbury Christ Church University
    • William Stow
    • Click here to find out more
    “ A key benefit for me is being aware of the opportunities to involve parents and families in out of school learning by communicating the potential of the setting to parents/carers for family visits.”
  • 33. Job Swap Students had the chance to swap courses for a whole day which was initiated during Fair for All week – a celebration of the culturally diverse college community. The innovation gave students the chance to try something that they may not have thought was suitable for them. The initial swap was between a group of Bricklayers and Hairdressing Apprentices. The group aged 16-24 spent the afternoon at the College’s hair salons while the hairdressers made their way over to the East Kent Building Trade School on Pyson’s Road Industrial Estates for a bricklaying session.
    • Benefits
    • The students are able to experience a different vocational environment and can use elements of the skills they have learned when they go back to their usual setting.
    • Hairdressing lecturer Jenny Mallinson said: “I was a little apprehensive but the lads were all great, they really listened to what they were being taught and seemed to enjoy themselves too.”
    • Thanet College
    • Leanne Rolls
    • Click here to find out more
    “ Brickwork course leader Steve Turner said: “It was a great success; the hairdressing students really got in to the spirit of things and were keen to come back again for a longer session.”
  • 34. Kent Bus Tracking System The system has been developed on a countywide basis providing information on bus services at over one hundred stops. Buses are fitted with global position system (GPS) equipment and radios to report their position to a central computer in the Kent Highway Services Traffic Management Centre. Buses operating on a variety of local bus services within the county can be seen via a link from the Kent Traffic & Travel website , also shown is a selection of virtual signs showing departures from stops. The system has recently been enhanced to underpin Fastrack services A and B allowing predictions at the beginning of journeys as well as stops along the route.
    • Benefits
    • Buses send messages to traffic lights as they approach and where possible are given priority to minimise delays.
    • Provides early indications of congestion and trend data can help identify parts of the network where investigations could be helpful.
    • Operators can see the deployment of their fleet in real time and redirect resources.
    • Kent County Council
    • David Batchelor
    • Click here to find out more
    “ Passengers are be able to check on times before they leave to make a journey, reducing waiting times at stops and improving overall journey times.”
  • 35. Kent Car Share An effective car share scheme can help relieve pressure on parking and support staff travel needs. It can also be a valuable component within a Travel Plan aimed at reducing environmental impacts, saving business costs and relieving traffic congestion. However, a standalone scheme can be both expensive to set up and time consuming to run. Kent Car Share offers a secure, high quality alternative at minimal cost and staff resource and organisations across Kent have already benefited by joining. Examples include  Kent County Council, Jacobs, Maidstone Borough Council, Canterbury City Council, Gravesend Borough Council,  Swale Borough Council, Tonbridge and Malling Borough Council, BAE systems, East Kent Hospital Trust, Kent Police,  Kent Fire and Rescue.
    • Benefits
    • Find over 2,600 drivers and passengers online instantly and securely.
    • Save money on petrol and parking.
    • Reduce traffic congestion and pollution.
    • Cut down parking time and hassle.
    • Help do your bit for Kent's environment.
    • Kent County Council
    • David Joyner
    • Click here to find out more
    “ Reduces CO2 emissions and pollution. Provides a cheap way for staff /or visitors to get to and from the office. Reduces levels of traffic and congestion. Reduces pressure on car-parking facilities . ”
  • 36. Kent Card The “Kent Card” is making it easier for clients to manage their own support by automating the payment process – thereby improving efficiency and cost effectiveness.   The Client Card has been developed in partnership with the Royal Bank of Scotland. It works like a debit card by enabling clients to pay for services using funds supplied by KCC. The card is supplied to people with support needs.  Cardholders can top up the card with their assessed contribution or additional money they may wish to use to pay for their service/support. Because the Kent Card is VISA badged, it can be used in over 20 million outlets world-wide and 843,000 outlets in the UK, including online and over the telephone. Click here to hear what people say about the card.
    • Benefits
    • This has a similar use like a VISA, as it provides freedom and control over making payments.
    • The card is an extension of the Direct Payments scheme and operates in a similar way to an ‘electronic purse’.
    • Kent County Council
    • Jean Penney
    • Click here to find out more
    “ The Kent Card allows payment over the phone and through the internet – people want choice, these payment methods are increasingly popular."
  • 37. Kent Housing Benefit Group This is essentially a working group of housing benefit practitioners to share best practices and ideas between Kent’s local authorities. The group includes representatives from the two main partners, the Kent Benefit Partnership and Rent Service. They regularly have requests from other groups to attend - e.g. to demonstrate a product or service. Six of the member Councils recently joined forces to procure an e-Benefits software system. This results in lower purchase costs and the ability to share implementation/project management issues. In addition, county-wide customers can use this system to claim benefits.
    • Benefits
    • Sharing of ideas, joint take up campaigns, sharing of training - e.g. having common training plans, courses, notes/material.
    • Benchmarking of common performance indicators so we can measure performance and highlight good and poor performance.
    • Authorities share staff, providing resilience support, such as covering periods of staff shortages.
    • Swale Borough Council
    • Steve Shrimplin
    • Click here to find out more
    “ Lowers costs and ensures consistency amongst staff giving the same advice to customers wherever they live in Kent.”
  • 38. Kent TV This is a broadband channel aimed at the residents of Kent and those who have an interest in Kent. It was launched in September 2007 with the desire to communicate to the public on a modern platform. Local people and community groups are able to upload their own video clips to the site, giving air-time to truly local issues. Programmes are even available to download as podcasts to listen to on mobile phones, iPods or MP4 players. Budding actors, musicians, journalists and presenters living in Kent are also using Kent TV as a springboard to showcase their talents. Kent TV also aims to raise the profile of Kent generating inward investment and tourism to the county. Whilst revolutionary in what it can achieve, Kent TV is the natural next step in communication.
    • Benefits
    • Transforms the way in which Kent as a county communicates.
    • Combines partners from Fire, Police, the voluntary sector, education and other community groups to produce a channel that truly reflects the views of the county.
    • Raises the profile of the county as a whole on a local, national and international scale, generating tourism and inward investment.
    • Kent County Council
    • Pascale Blackburn
    • Click here to find out more
    “ Accessible to all of Kent through a broadband medium. It aims to promote and raise the profile of Kent in a modern and contemporary way”
  • 39. Kent Waste Partnership The responsibility for household waste management in Kent is shared between the twelve District/Borough Councils, who collect domestic waste, and Kent County Council which is responsible for its disposal. The Kent Waste Partnership was created in April 2007 with the purpose of ensuring ‘joined up thinking’ between Kent’s two tiers of local government and giving the tax payers of the County the best possible service and value for money. The Kent Waste Partnership is now approaching the end of its first year of successful operation; during this period it has undertaken a number of joint operational initiatives and has laid the foundations for future close cooperation and planning.
    • Benefits
    • Creation of a working partnership that has the commitment of the Elected Members and senior officers of all of the principal councils of Kent.
    • Increasing the public profile of waste management issues in Kent.
    • Engagement with tax payers of the county on waste recycling and minimisation issues.
    • Kent Waste Partnership
    • Patrick Conrad
    • Click here to find out more
    “ Development of operational projects – in some cases across traditional authority boundaries – in response to common strategic goals.”
  • 40. Lean Benefits Provision Swale Council's Benefit Service used to be amongst the worst performing in the country. The Council decided it needed to radically rethink what it was doing from a customer viewpoint. Swale Council wanted to look at what mattered to its customers and design its service around their demands. Not what the systems dictated. The Council regularly checks the results and looks for continual improvement. Most staff are now trained to work with a claim from beginning to end, which has improved customer and job satisfaction. 86 per cent of customers are either fairly satisfied or very satisfied with staff in the office. Incredibly, all this has been achieved with the same resources. And even more remarkably, Swale is now offering advice to other organisations.
    • Benefits
    • Council provides the service its customer expects. Claims are dealt with "on the spot" rather than take weeks or months to clear.
    • Swale has shared its "way of working" with many other local authorities. They now form part of mainstream ideas that have been shared and put into practice nationally.
    • Swale Borough Council
    • Steve Shrimplin
    • Click here to find out more
    “ Claims are dealt with "on the spot" rather than take weeks or months to clear.”
  • 41. Local Area Agreement Data Room The Medway Local Area Agreement data room enables the capture of information and its dissemination for all its partners. Medway Council governance staff administer the portal activities. Data capture and dissemination in local area agreements has traditionally been a difficult challenge for local government, so Medway Council’s innovative approach has solved the problem. The system, developed by the Medway Council Information Technology Team, underpins strong governance arrangements for the Local Area Agreement. This ensures the Partnership maintains a clear overview of performance and can track delivery from all partners.
    • Benefits
    • Ensures a secure electronic workflow-based system for partner data provision and validation.
    • Provides the system over the Internet, reducing the need for paper forms and reliance on non-electronic channels.
    • Improves online collaboration between the Council and the thematic partners.
    • Medway Council
    • Moira Bragg
    • Click here to find out more
    “ The system provides a portal where partners can enter and upload information, validate and disseminate information. Council governance staff administer the portal activities. ”
  • 42. Medway Managers Toolkit
    • Medway Council have launched an easy access toolkit this year for its managers. The Medway Managers Toolkit offers intranet-based information on a wide range of council policies, procedures and practices - a one stop reference for managers.
    • At the click of a button managers can now access information on:
    • the council’s key plans
    • service planning
    • performance management, such as indicators & data
    • budget management
    • business continuity
    • procurement, communications risk management
    • the Local Strategic Partnership
    • guidance on all the HR processes and procedures
    • arrangements and protocols for working with Elected Members
    • Benefits
    • Anne-Louise Clark, Head of Organisational Development explained, "This area of the intranet is designed to give managers instant access to the information they need. It is also hoped that this will remove some of the confusion that existing and newly appointed managers experience in relation to what Medway Council expects of them.“
    • Medway Council
    • Moira Bragg
    • to find out more Click here
    “ The toolkit has been developed with managers and staff across the council. The site will be continually improved so that managers have access to the most recent information. ”
  • 43. Micro Portable Power Centre This small device acts both as a multi-functional power supply unit and as an independent generator. It was primarily designed as a low cost, micro home/school power centre, which can be used equally in developed and developing countries. As an example, just one power centre can easily be configured to charge up to 20 mobile phones or power up to 30 LED spotlights. It obviously has many other usages, for example powering radios, communication systems and cooling fans and of course charging batteries, ranging from small personal batteries to car batteries. As well as having its own extremely easy to turn, powerful, wind-up generator, the unit can also regulate a wide variety of other natural power inputs, including solar photovoltaic panels and small wind turbines.
    • Benefits
    • Alastair Morrison, the company’s Managing Director, added, “As well as this very exciting emerging economies market, we believe our micro power centre will be very popular in both the business and leisure markets for travellers and for use as an emergency power source, for example, charging vehicle and marine batteries.”
    • New Universal Products
    • Alex Bushell
    • Click here to find out more
    “ The system was specially designed for the requirements of the ultra low cost educational laptops. We believe this will make it easier for people who don’t have access to electrical power.”
  • 44. No Use Empty There are around 4,300 long-term empty properties in the four districts of Thanet, Dover, Shepway and Swale. The resources available to tackle long term empty properties used to vary across the districts. Based on these current statistics, a project was developed to increase the number of empty properties returned to use as good quality housing accommodation. This has been used for an empty property loan scheme partnership fund, funding and support for districts in their enforcement work and a direct purchase scheme. These schemes allow the districts to offer improved incentives to encourage owners to bring their empty properties back into use, or to take formal action to secure the re-use of empty properties where owners are uncooperative.
    • Benefits
    • Support provided by the County enables the districts to improve performance towards their targets to reduce empty properties, increase housing supply, reduce crime and disorder.
    • Work undertaken by the districts to tackle the empty property issues supports the County in its work to bring about regeneration in the target areas, reduce crime and disorder and raise economic success.
    • Kent, Dover, Shepway, Swale & Thanet Councils
    • Rebecca Smith
    • Click here to find out more
    “ Reduces the districts’ costs in dealing with the problems with empty properties.”
  • 45. Safer Food, Better Business Funding was made available by the Food Standards Agency (FSA) for local authorities to implement the “Safer Food Better Business” packs into food businesses. The Kent Food Technical Working Group (Environmental Health) put together a joint bid for 12 out of the 13 Kent Authorities. A steering group was set up and Sevenoaks was designated as the "base" authority for managing the fund (£330, 000) across Kent. The FSA agreed to the Working Group providing 7 seminars in each authority over a period of 18 months, which are currently taking place. Each business that attended the seminar would then be provided with a three hour one to one coaching visit free of charge from an agency determined by the FSA.
    • Benefits
    • 1000 businesses have been trained to effectively comply with Food Hygiene legislation, as well as the need for a documented safety system to be in place.
    • This has provided an opportunity for local authorities to work together as a team, providing invaluable free training and support to businesses across Kent.
    • Kent Food Technical Group
    • Annie Littleton
    • Click here to find out more
    “ This has provided an opportunity for local authorities to work together as a team, providing invaluable free training and support to businesses across Kent.”
  • 46. Service User & Carer Involvement Canterbury Christ Church University educates many of Kent’s social workers. Since 2003, like all providers of social work education, it has been expected to involve carers and people who use services. Social work values are traditionally based on respect for the individual; so power sharing is not a new element. It’s not just a matter of getting students to sympathise and empathise with service users, but also to be challenged by them. Funding from Skills for Care has allowed the University to develop a long-term project for promoting service user and carer involvement. There are two aims of the project. The first is to promote service user and carer involvement in the education of social work students. The second is to promote networking opportunities among people who use services across Kent and Medway.
    • Benefits
    • Helps ‘normalise’ people who use services and break down barriers and preconceptions the students might have about the people their work will empower.
    • Service users involved in the programme can be involved on a voluntary basis or be paid for different tasks.
    • Canterbury Christchurch University
    • Eleni Skoura-Kirk
    • Click here to find out more
    “ There have been challenges but we’ve learned to agree to disagree. The partnership is inspiring. I love how creative it feels. ”
  • 47. Sevenoaks Kaleidoscope The building houses a newly refurbished library, museum, gallery, café with a “multi purpose space”, including a Tourist Information Centre that re-opened in December 2006. It’s bright, light, open, welcoming and vibrant. Staff are able to engage even more with customers as there is no formal counter to act as a barrier. Staff have embraced this, along with a willingness to try other new ways of working, such as floor walking to better engage with library visitors, but also improve customer satisfaction and book promotion. The new gallery is stunning, bright and airy; everything the old one was not! It is now very accessible, with upper and lower entrances and exits and disabled parking bays created to enable easy access for all members of the local community.
    • Benefits
    • Provides opportunities for a wide range of author talks, cultural events and art exhibitions.
    • Holding public consultation sessions and engaging with the local Community and local organisations have since assisted in selecting new stock. A disabled community group, who previously were unable to access our services, now use the library weekly .
    • Kent County Council
    • Fiona Dutton
    • Click here to find out more
    “ Helping Kent Libraries & Archives to enhance the quality of life of Sevenoaks Community by stimulating lifelong imagination and discovery.”
  • 48. Simulation to Support Practice Learning Simulation is an approach to teaching and learning which is gaining greater emphasis within nurse education. Children are not merely small versions of adults and therefore the skills needed by those who care for them need to be acquired in appropriate settings. For child nursing students this can be a particular problem, given the limited opportunities for placement in specific children’s area throughout training. Other ways are needed to help these students gain confidence in skills they will need when caring for children. One such approach is through simulated learning The Sim baby can be pre-programmed to give student nurse’s practice in monitoring the manikins functions just as they would monitor a child’s in a real-life situation. It gives students real time data on the symptoms the manikin displays, which can be programmed to evolve in ways that mimic medical conditions.
    • Benefits
    • Offers a strategy for learning and assessment to enhance clinical competence.
    • Enables a learning environment to be created that is interactive and mirror as far as possible the real life clinical situation.
    • Supporting the learner to plan, act, evaluate and re-conceptualise a situation to leading changes in behaviour and personal values.
    • Canterbury Christ Church University
    • Kathryn Summers
    • Click here to find out more
    “ Acting out a scenario like this beforehand does make you think more. The mistakes we made we won’t make again. We’ll remember to talk to the baby’s mum more.”
  • 49. Solution to Means Enquiry At Maidstone Borough Council, there were a large number of cases awaiting a Means Enquiry Hearing. The innovative approach was to send a letter to the residents who hadn’t paid their council tax reminding them of the costs involved if court proceedings were activated. The letter also invited them to come in as a final opportunity before the costs were incurred. There was a 60% response rate and the Council either achieved full payment or an acceptable repayment plan from most of them. Some, needless to say defaulted, but the overall exercise was a success!
    • Benefits
    • Increased the collection of tax and reduced the number awaiting a court hearing which benefited both Maidstone Borough Council and the Magistrates' Court.
    • Maidstone Borough Council
    • Tony Jeyes
    • Click here to find out more
    “ There was a 60% response rate and the Council either achieved full payment or an acceptable repayment plan from most of them.”
  • 50. Stanhope Estate Regeneration Ashford Borough Council became the first shire district authority to agree a Housing Revenue Account regeneration PFI deal and closed contracts in a record-breaking nine months. New and groundbreaking standards in community engagement were set in the process. The five–year regeneration package will now provide 400 quality new homes and create a safe, secure and sustainable environment. The Stanhope PFI process began in 2000 when residents were asked by the Council to identify their priorities for improvement. This allowed the council to set out clear goals to create a new identity, sense of place and public perception for Stanhope , replace nine unpopular flat blocks with quality housing stock, create a safe and secure environment and improve the quality of life of all residents. As well as better housing, facilities and environment for residents, the council has aspired to foster a new sense of ownership and pride in Stanhope.
    • Benefits
    • Deliver new high-quality housing, remove unpopular blocks of flats which were a symbol of deprivation, create a more balanced community, improve the environment and provide new retail facilities, job and training opportunities for local residents and foster a new sense of civic pride.
    • Represented an opportunity to secure significant capital investment by engaging private sector partners.
    • Ashford Borough Council
    • Rob Hustwayte
    • Click here to find out more
    “ At last things are happening for the better. There’s light at the end of the tunnel. There is a genuine buzz on the estate that things are at last improving and we are all very excited. People are proud of living here again.”
  • 51. Streetwise Today, every new residential and mixed use development represents an opportunity to create good places for people to live. Safety remains a primary consideration, but in the context of a proper understanding of the risks. No longer are designs ‘standards driven’; instead they are the result of collaborative working and careful assessment against a range of criteria. As part of this both the Kent Design Guide and Manual for Streets help build an excellent reputation for new areas of public space. As innovative thinking is put into practice the outcomes are monitored and their soundness is reviewed. Residents’ satisfaction surveys are particularly important. Good and bad practice is shared, raising standards in some, encouraging further innovation among others.
    • Benefits
    • ‘ Intelligent engineering’, as it has been called, finds highway engineers looking at all the functions of public space between buildings.
    • In pursuit of places that can accommodate movement, meeting, play and parking, such engineers are recognising and applying quality as a test alongside functionality and safety.
    • Kent County Council
    • Bob White
    • Click here to find out more
    “ Gaining recognition for creative approaches.”
  • 52. Sustainable Roadshows The purpose of the Sustainable Roadshow is to educate and stimulate interest and awareness in all areas of renewable technologies, live and direct to schools and in public education. It is “Hands On” interactive entertaining and fun. The units are designed as fully functional renewable energy powered mobile display units. The purpose of the Inventors & Inventing Roadshow is to educate and stimulate interest and awareness in all areas of inventing, live and direct to schools and education. In other words, interactive entertaining and inventing made fun.
    • Benefits
    • The mobile road show is designed to stimulate and educate and is unique, as it also demonstrates award winning inventions, in particular from Kent based inventors and companies, as part of the presentations.
    • Universal (Education) are now looking to scale these visual and "hands on" features of the presentations, into travelling mobile units.
    • Universal (Education)
    • Alex Bushell
    “ The response has been extremely positive so far, especially for the "Hands On" demonstrations and the visual examples of "concept to product" sections.”
  • 53. Systems Availability Canterbury City Council’s Information & Communication Technology department needed a highly visible indication of the status of their systems, and accurate performance figures that are automatically produced. As a result, it has developed a system that can monitor all areas of its infrastructure and applications, from network visibility through to overloading of Citrix Servers, from database accessibility to Web site functionality. The department have also developed an approach whereby one member of staff is effectively the duty officer for a period, and it is their responsibility to check the health of their systems, and pass on problems to the relevant support section.
    • Benefits
    • It has improved service availability, increased failure prevention, provides a centralised view and ensures a high quality of service is delivered to citizens of Canterbury.
    • Having a view of the whole infrastructure also helps the Council to diagnose the exact root cause of the failure by seeing what other components are affected at the same time.
    “ Scheduling staff to work from home during heavy snow. This enabled us to provide a call centre service that would not have been possible if we did not have the home workers”
    • Canterbury City Council
    • Angela Waite
    • Click here to find out more
  • 54. Taktix Business Link Kent feel that enabling all people to learn about being self employed is a key strand of ensuring everyone can be part of modern society. Many people have been 'left behind' or never had the opportunity to explore different work options. The Taktix programmes and games enable people to realise what they already know. It also means they can learn important rules of business in a no risk environment, through working as a team, around the table or on line. People can develop their whole personality through the series of programmes that support their development towards employment.
    • Benefits
    • Individuals from all walks of life and ages, from school pupils to the long term unemployed. "The games were learning in disguise“ (Participant).
    • "You can never be 100% sure about running a business and I found the programme very motivating and took me through all the steps I needed to be well prepared“ (Participant).
    “ You can never be 100% sure about running a business and I found the programme very motivating and took me through all the steps I needed to be well prepared.”
    • Business Support Kent CIC
    • Kim Fletcher
    • Click here to find out more
  • 55. Teen Engagers The project is designed to set up a sustainable group for young deaf people from the age of 11 to 19 years old which is run by them and for them. Teen-Engagers was set up in 2008 to answer the needs of Young Deaf People in Kent where there appears to be no specific youth services for deaf people and thus leaving them isolated and marginalised. The aims and objectives will be those that the group choose but it is envisaged that it will initially start with mostly social events such as outings and trips. Eventually we hope the young people to engage with and take part in the wider community as a group which represents the Deaf young people opinions including membership of the Kent Youth Parliament.
    • Benefits
    • The benefits will be that young Deaf People will be able to access others within their peer group who share the same language and issues.
    • This will help them to develop socially in a similar way to hearing children and give them the confidence to take full part in the wider community as they mature into adulthood.
    • Kent Deaf Children’s Society
    • Ivor Riddell
    • Click here to find out more
    “ This will help them to develop socially in a similar way to children who can hear, giving them the confidence to take full part in the wider community as they mature into adulthood.”
  • 56. Telehealth Telehealth technology empowers people to monitor their vital signs from their own home and makes the data remotely available to their clinicians. Telehealth is not intended to replace personal contact with care or health professionals; however it can enable more appropriate timing or interventions. Furthermore it promotes better self-management and healthier behaviours. More importantly, it also helps to improve the client’s quality of life. KCC has now been awarded a Whole Systems Demonstrator Programme to facilitate innovation in the way health & social care services are delivered and look at the effectiveness of supporting care pathways with Telehealth and Telecare. It was also a winning entry in the national innovation competition organised by the Audit Commission and the IDeA.
    • Benefits
    • The Kent project translates and adapts an existing approach from the US. Applying the concept to older people with longer-term conditions has required day-to-day learning about what works.
    • By providing clinicians with access to monitoring information they are able to see trends in patients’ conditions and make any changes to their care plans accordingly.
    • Kent County Council
    • Richard Parton
    • Click here to find out more
    “ The Kent project is already the UK’s largest Telehealth pilot with 250 clients already using the equipment across the county.”
  • 57. Testing the Use of Texting At Tonbridge & Malling Borough Council, there are on average 20 incoming texts per month. These are managed from a PC in the same way as emails but then replies go via a mobile phone. All the staff who deal with the text messaging have been checked by the Criminal Record Bureau (CRB). This is because they have access to the youth text message list including young people’s mobile numbers. Issues reported so far by texting include overflowing recycling banks, graffiti, vandalism, and benefit fraud. Services that can be requested include the green recycling box, help with homelessness, arrangement to pay Council Tax and getting missed bins collected.
    • Benefits
    • There is one request which demonstrates the real value of providing this option is not necessarily to count numbers but look at the individuals who are using this method of contact. This was from a deaf lady who was suffering domestic violence. She couldn't phone the Council, but was being kept house bound by her partner. The ability to text from her mobile was a very positive option.
    • Tonbridge & Malling Borough Council
    • Julie Beilby
    • Click here to find out more
    “ For some it may be most convenient, for others it may be easiest, it may be cheapest. There are however people for whom it can be a life-line.”
  • 58. Thanet Community Portal Thanet District Council Community portal enables community & voluntary groups in the district have their own free web site hosted for free by the Council. These groups can also publicise their news, events & job vacancies online on their web pages as part of the portal. Visitors to the portal can search for a group, look for a volunteering opportunity, browse the events calendar or read the latest news. Community & voluntary groups sign up online. Once signed up, they can manage their web pages using a simple online form. The portal is currently being developed to include a directory that will promote and showcase Thanet based artists & creatives.
    • Benefits
    • A free web site for all community & voluntary groups in Thanet.
    • A central online site where visitors can search for Thanet community & voluntary group information.
    • Future opportunities to feed this information to Kent wide directories e.g. the forthcoming Kent Youth website. Almost 400 groups have signed up to the portal – a figure that is growing each week.
    • Thanet District Council
    • Paul Lawes
    • Click here to find out more
    “ Boosts advertising for Thanet community & voluntary groups by putting their information on the Council’s website which gets more than 12,000 visits a month.”
  • 59. TN2 Community Centre Tunbridge Wells Borough Council funded the TN2 project in partnership with Kent County Council and Town and Country Housing Group. The local community then took over responsibility for the management of the new facilities in Sherwood by forming the TN2 Trust – all members volunteer their time free of charge. The aims of the partnership and the new centre, opened in June 2007, includes better links within the community, a facility to meet the needs of the residents, development of local groups and increased participation in their activities, to provide a state-of-the-art library and a range of community activities such as homework clubs. It also includes easy access to key agencies such as health workers and housing advice, facilities for local business recruitment and training and environmental improvements to the area.
    • Benefits
    • The innovation is that the project has brought the whole community closer together, and this was evident when they coordinated the opening ceremony.
    • Zoe Jangaard, Chair of the TN2 Trust, said: ‘TN2 is a very friendly and inclusive place. We help people find out about local services and are expanding our range of activities and clubs all the time.’
    “ Simon R, local resident, said: ‘TN2 helps gets me out of the house a lot and it’s affordable. If you’re sick of looking at the four walls you can come along meet lots of friendly people. I tell all of my friends about it!’”
    • Tunbridge Wells Borough Council
    • Nadine Cowell
    • Click here to find out more
  • 60. Toximet Toximet Limited is a pioneering spin-out company from the University of Greenwich. The company was founded by Professor Raymond Coker, who has thirty years experience in the management of food safety within the global food chain. Toximet has developed a novel diagnostic tool, the Toximet T System, which can be applied to a wide variety of markets. The company will focus upon the measurement of food toxins in the first instance. Toximet’s innovative product has secured significant pre-investment funds to enable its development, including the prestigious Smart, PoCKeT and Government Grant for Research and Development awards.
    • Benefits
    • Provides a rapid, user-friendly, portable, inexpensive and accurate measurement procedure for food toxins, and other target compounds.
    • Exploits novel, patented technology for the isolation and measurement of target.
    • Can be applied to other, non-food, markets wherever there is a clear need for a rapid, user-friendly, inexpensive and accurate measurement procedure.
    • University of Greenwich
    • Toximet
    • Click here to find out more
    “ Toximet plans to license the manufacture and distribution to selected companies to address carefully targeted markets."
  • 61. Voices of Thanet College A combined initiative was organised this year by Thanet College and KM FM radio to ‘tour’ local schools for a week. Students had the chance to appear on the local radio station. Students auditioned ‘X Factor’ style which gave them experience of an interview scenario. Members of Thanet College’s Senior Management Team transformed into talent show judges for the day to pick the “Voices of Thanet College”. The Principal Sue Buss, Deputy Principal Anne Leese, and the Director of Business Development Karen Evans took on the roles made famous by Mr Nasty Simon Cowell and Ozzie’s wife Sharon to give a group of students the chance to appear on local radio as part of a combined initiative to promote Thanet College being run by the College and KEF. The adverts and questions recorded were played live on air during the week the Schools Tour took place.
    • Benefits
    • Preparing for an interview.
    • Demonstrating communication skills.
    • Presenting to a panel.
    • Thanet College
    • Leanne Rolls
    • Click here to find out more
    “ The winning students were taken to the KM FM studios in Cliftonville, where they had the chance to record their pieces in a real working environment.”
  • 62. Ward Walks This is an innovative new approach to community engagement based on a model piloted in Medway, Oregon. It involves getting councillors and officers out of the Town Hall to talk to residents in their neighbourhood – in most cases within their homes, where people are most comfortable and willing to talk about their concerns and expectations. The interviewers were made up of Tunbridge Wells Borough Councillors & Officers, Kent County Councillors & representatives from Paddock Wood & Sandhurst Parish Councils. The key issues raised included refuse & recycling, youth facilities, traffic calming, community safety, parking & public transport. Respondents in both areas were very satisfied with their local area as a place to live; nearly 90% were ‘very’ or ‘fairly satisfied’. Nearly 75% of the people interviewed in both areas rated their area as a good place to raise children.
    • Benefits
    • Broadens response base & widens those who have a say in local decision-making.
    • Connects councillors & officers with the communities they serve, making the Council less introspective. Officers were given three weeks to address concerns and answer enquiries. Multi-agency community feedback sessions were then arranged to provide info on concerns.
    • Tunbridge Wells Borough Council
    • Holly Goring
    • Click here to find out more
    “ Cllr James Scholes, Portfolio Holder for Safer and Stronger Communities, said: ‘The Ward Walks have really helped us to reach local people and provided a friendly way to record people’s views.”
  • 63. Thank you for participating… Ashford Borough Council, Business Support Kent CIC, Canterbury Christ Church University, Canterbury City Council, Canterbury College, Dover District Council, Global Medical Solutions, Gravesham Borough Council, Herne Bay & Canterbury Volunteer Centre, Kent Buying Consortium, Kent Customer Services Network, Kent County Council, Kent Deaf Children’s Society, Kent Environmental Health Group, Kent Food Technical Group, Kent Housing Group, Kent Improvement Partnership, Kent & Medway Overview & Scrutiny Network, Kent Science Park, Kent Waste Partnership, Maidstone Borough Council, Medway Council, Medway Enterprise Hub, New Universal Products, Sevenoaks District Council, Solarstar, Swale Borough Council, Thanet College, Thanet District Council, Tonbridge & Malling Borough Council, Tunbridge Wells Borough Council, University College of the Creative Arts, Universal Education, University of Greenwich & West Kent Housing Association
  • 64. Thanks to all of you who submitted your innovations.
  • 65. Thanks to all of you who submitted your innovations. Find out more about the Kent Year of Innovation here .
  • 66. Thanks to all of you who submitted your innovations. Find out more about the Kent Year of Innovation here . We would love to hear your feedback, click here .