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Monthly Feel the Difference Fund Voting

Each year, HCRG Care Group sets aside £100,000 to fund projects designed, developed and implemented by our colleagues delivering services across the country as part of our commitment that everyone feels the difference.

In the past the fund has been used to purchase additional life-saving equipment like a vital signs monitor for a minor injuries unit, has helped to keep children occupied in waiting rooms with specially-designed activity packs, and funded events where our senior team, frontline colleagues and people who use our services get together to talk about services and co-design solutions to problems.

We know from experience that it’s the people delivering services day-in and day-out who know them best and the Feel the Difference Fund helps them implement the small ideas which make a big difference.

Citizens’ Panel members (asked and above) are invited to give their views on applications in B&NES each month by email, and the Feel the Difference Panel – who decide whether applications receive funding or not – use members’ views as part of the decision process.

We post updates about the final decision the panel made below and in the Citizens’ Panel newsletters.


Our last 10 decisions

Month Project Decision
August 2017 Wellbeing services team producing a one-off newspaper to raise awareness of mental health support in B&NES for World Mental Health Day in October.
Shared Lives want to organise two events – one BBQ and one Christmas Party, helping to reduce isolation among carers and support carers to find additional support.
Wellbeing Services – The Panel felt there wasn’t enough of a plan to support the application and should the team want funding they need to provide greater clarity as to the impact the funding will make and how they want to achieve it.

B&NES Shared Lives – £250 An application was approved for funding towards a BBQ event for the team’s carers. As lone workers, carers can often feel isolated with exclusion being a big concern. The event will provide an opportunity for the carers and the clients they support to come together and celebrate the work they do in the community. The second application for funding towards a Christmas event was rejected as the Panel felt we should see how this event goes first before committing to the second event. The decision was backed by some members of the Citizens’ Panel who felt only one event should be funded.






 There were no applications from B&NES in September


Choir for people with aphasia

Electronic signage for St Martins outpatient area




Speech and Language Therapy Service, The Stroke Association and a music therapist This application was successful and £600 was awarded to pay for the choirmaster

This application for a sum of £2590 plus VAT was successful.


November 2017













December 2017

January 2018

February 2018






March 2018

Three applications were successful in November













No applications were received in December

No applications were received in January

Resources for lego therapy for children with autism and other communication difficulties


Personal input pods for people with stress and anxiety



No applications were received in Bath and North East Somerset this month

Electronic lobbysign St Martins Hospital An electronic signage system which is able to display information in words, pictures, sounds and videos. The signage system will be placed in the outpatient area at St Martins Hospital which currently doesn’t have a reception area. This makes it difficult for patients to navigate  around the premises. The lobbysign will improve the quality of information for patients whilst reassuring them that they are in the correct place. £2590 plus VAQT has been awarded.

Evidence driven swallowing therapy for service users, Adult Speech and Language Therapy. The Adult Speech and Language Therapy Team were successful in their bid to fund cutting edge and non-invasive therapy aimed at those who suffer with long-term swallowing difficulties. Research behind the therapy has shown that those who need assistance with feeding (eg via a feeding tube) can make progress to oral feeding and fluids. Not only can this reduce costs for feeding equipment and hospital admissions – it will also have a direct impact on quality of life for patients. £1330 has been awarded

Ambulatory IV pumps for home service. The B&NES IV Service application was for the purchase of 2 ambulatory IV pumps for patients with complex needs to be managed in the community. The pumps would allow patients to become more mobile by removing the need for a drip stand. A trial run o the pump allowed a patient to visit the seaside with her fluid running for the day and freed up nurses time for other visits. £3846 was awarded for 2 pumps

Colleague choir. This application was unsuccessful






5o or more service users will benefit from evidence-based Lego Therapy, which helps children with autism and other communication difficulties work together as they make lego models in groups. As children take on roles of builder, supplier and engineers, they will be able to make progress in their language and social communication skills. The lego therapy will be used by the whole paediatric team in mainstream and special schools, as well as specialist Autism Spectrum Disorder Units. The majority of the Paediatric Speech and Language Therapy Team already have had training to deliver the therapy and the funding covers the cost of lego. £100 was awarded for lego

The Psychological Service within the Complex Health Needs Service applied for £1464 for personal input pods and 3 ipads. This is an innovative psychological intervention tool and outcome measure. The biofeedback sensor communicates with tablet technology to provide a sensory and gaming feedback experience for users who experience stress and anxiety.

The Panel requested more information before they could make a decision.