An innovative partnership scheme that was set up to strengthen local communities and make Birmingham a better places to grow old in has been named as a finalist in the Local Government Chronicle (LGC) Awards.

The Neighbourhood Network Scheme (NNS) - a partnership between voluntary, community and faith organisations and health and social care - was developed to give people over 50 access to community-based support, with the aim promoting a better quality of life.  

Each NNS employs development workers who build partnerships with local and city-wide voluntary, community, faith and social enterprise organisations, citizen groups and professionals working in the community to organise activities and support for citizens.

Benita Wishart, Research and Evaluation Lead Prevention First is one of the partners involved in the scheme.

She said: “The NNS proves the powerful impact of voluntary and statutory agencies working together to deliver change.

During the pandemic, Neighbourhood network schemes played a key role in supporting isolated people and coordinating the local volunteer responses. The city could not have achieved the resilience without this.” 

“I am proud to be part of a scheme that is increasingly recognised as an exemplar of collaboration with the voluntary and community sector. NNS are an example of how through working collaboratively to focus on prevention, we can find local solutions that deliver both savings and better outcomes for people.”

Since April 2022, the NNS model has been re-commissioned for another five years and expanded to include supporting younger adults 18-49 with a long-term disability

In addition, as part of the Integrated Care System’s approach to ensure health and care decision making is locally-led, locality partnership managers and commissioners from NHS Birmingham and Solihull are working closely with all NNSs in the city to have a joint approach to place-based care and community development work.

The nomination was shortlisted in the category of health and social care at the national LGC Awards. Judges commented that those involved demonstrated “an impressive change management approach at scale, developing community strength through community power.”

For more information about the NNS, visit:

For more about the LGC awards:

LGC Awards 2022 - Home Page (