Weeknotes- July 5th — July 9th

James Green
2 min readJul 9, 2021

It’s coming home, it’s coming home etc etc.

Independent Visitors

This is a fantastic scheme that I’ve enjoyed learning about this week. It pairs up volunteers with a child or young person in care. They can bond over all kinds of things, sport, films, whatever, and organise meet ups at least once a month. It’s a great way for the young person in care to have a steady friendship with someone over longer periods of time.

I had a great chat with one of our User Researchers, Rich who had done some work recently with volunteers for Covid-related stuff. Some different needs with this, but a lot that’s relevant to this scheme, so having a chat helped me get some user stories together.

I then took these stories to the service, tweaked them a bit to their needs and clarified what their goals are. There was some confusion over marketing and social media promotion. Our trusty comms team will help with that, so I clarified what our information content would be for on the main essex.gov site. The service totally got this and we’re well away. Content done and not far from being signed off.

Bits and bobs

There’s been quite a few ‘quick fix’ jobs this week, that were slightly trickier than first appeared. I’m updating pages on school transport, help with childcare costs and citizenship ceremonies. I need to have a chat with some of the stakeholders as I’m a little unsure on how some of the processes work. Of course it’s important to get this right so that residents have clear information on what they need to do. Once clarified I can publish the updated content.

Collaboration Station

There was a great session with Stockport Council, looking at ways in which we can collaborate and learn from each other. Miro boards we’re cracked out. this was the first session so a lot of it was about what we want to get from these meets, which look like they’ll happen every six weeks or so. It seems we’re on the same page. Generally we want to know what the other team are finding challenging, share ideas that are working well and learn from each other.

Exciting times! Looking forward to attending the next one.

A colour photograph of a devastated young Gareth Southgate on the left, after famously missing a penalty against Denmark in 1996. On the right is a photo of Gareth Southgate in a suit in 2021, celebrating a win as England’s manager.
Devastated young Gareth Southgate after missing a penalty against Denmark in 1996, jubilant present day Southgate after an England win

Reading list

We’ve been talking a lot about inclusivity in the team recently. This has been a useful reference: Making your service more inclusive — Service Manual — GOV.UK (www.gov.uk)

Tricia Wang’s searing takedown of the ‘How Might We’ prompt: The most popular design thinking strategy is BS (fastcompany.com)



James Green

I am a Content Designer at Essex County Council, with a background in the music industry.