At Common Unity & Forward For Life we are celebrating the 6th Birthday of The Waiting Room (TWR). Tailored for Birmingham and Solihull citizens and providing links to over 1000 services both locally and nationally, The Waiting Room has been a huge success.
Thank you for your support
Adopted and supported by Public Health, the Birmingham Safeguarding Adults Network, Birmingham City University, Birmingham and Solihull NHS CCG, the emergency services as well as key organisations in the third sector, TWR continues to grow with new services being added and existent services being updated regularly.
Keep up to date with us
As part of our Birthday celebration we are launching a TWR Updates page that keeps you up to speed with new TWR developments and other related stories.
The Waiting Room Smart Directory (TWR), as an initial concept, was born out of the fact that paper-based directories were often out of date before the ink had dried and online alternatives were difficult to navigate. This meant that the public didn’t know what services were available and how to access those services which in turn puts a greater strain on Primary Care Services further along the road. In 2015, during a Peer Support Programme for men known as ManMade, the issue of limited knowledge regarding services was raised by the attendees but it was notable that these men had both supermarket key-fobs with Quick Reference codes and SMART phones – From this The TWR key fob was born with its own unique QR code providing communities and professionals with an easy to share approach to accessing online service information through a single website based directory.
TWR is all about helping people help themselves and feel empowered to make informed choices about the services that may be able to support them. From its original development back in 2015 for Birmingham and Solihull citizens accessed through the TWR key fob and giving access to around 100 services, today TWR has over a 1000 local and national services listed in 24 Life Domain sections that are instantly accessible online, through the key fob, posters, merchandise (mugs, stickers and pens) as well as the Birmingham and Solihull CCG supported TWR App found in the App store (Apple) and Google Play (Android).
This is a screenshot from the App store Service information can be shared by text, email as well as Facebook, Linked-in, and Twitter. It receives over 10,000 hits locally per month and enables both professionals and the public to find services to best meet need from Safeguarding concerns and Criminal Justice support to Faith Community Links, Education, employment and sexual health services – in fact, TWR links people with support opportunities across the life course in all aspects of life. It is, we believe, the one-stop health and wellbeing information resource for Birmingham and Solihull communities.
Keys to date have been distributed through a range of supporting bodies including Public Health, Birmingham City University, HMP Birmingham, West Midlands Police and Fire Service, the Birmingham Adult Safeguarding Network, Jaguar Landrover and the wider Third Sector.
With its own Contact Management System, TWR can be easily added to or edited and new services can be proposed directly though the website Add A Service option.
TWR Launches into the Doctors Surgery
The current uptake of TWR has been remarkable but I feel we have barely scratched the surface in reaching communities in a way that will make a real difference. The introduction of the new Birmingham and Solihull CCG funded, NHS branded key fob for distribution across every practice can only be of benefit to both practitioners and patients alike and we hope that through your support more people will know where to go when they need help.
Poster of TWR for GP surgeries So if you are based in Birmingham or Solihull, look out for TWR in your GP Practice between February and May 2020 which includes the key fobs and posters. You may also want to check out the download section of the website where you can access the video’s that can be used on GP Waiting Room monitors (or any monitors), online posters for printing and more information besides to support the roll out of TWR.
If you are thinking of bringing TWR to your area/organisation, or just want to know more about TWR then please feel free to get in touch.
The second version of The Waiting Room was released in May 2018. Faster, smarter and cleaner, the new TWR can translate into well over 80 languages, has full search capabilities, offers direct call functionality and a simple but effective “share this service” facility both through personal media options and social media platforms.
Housed within our own bespoke customised platform, designed to offer up-to-date and readily usable information, the TWR Directory is clearly at the forefront of smart technology development by linking people with support options across the health and social care landscape.
A true virtual one-stop shop with health and wellbeing services quite literally, at your finger-tips. If you want more information about TWR then visit www.the-waitingroom.org or email us at [email protected]
(TWR )The Waiting Room can now be translated into over 80 languages. Making it easier than ever before to find the right health and wellbeing service for you. Developed for Birmingham and Solihull Citizens, TWR is the virtual one-stop-shop for health and wellbeing connections.
The Waiting Room connecting you to the right service –
Please note you will need to download a free QR code scanner from your mobile app store to use QR’s Accessing information to specific services can be difficult at the best of times. In modern day life technology plays a key role in ensuring information is at our fingertips.
The URBRUM resource key gives you the opportunity to access your local services whilst on the go. The Quick Response Code on the resource key will take you straight to The Meeting Room, a place where you will be able to access information about local services that can support you.
Visit www.urbrum.org or scan the QR code to access the URBRUM Resource Key video. follow us on instagram @commonunity follow us on twitter @common_unity_
Over 6,000 people die by suicide every year in the UK alone, that’s someone dying by suicide every 90 minutes. But it is well worth remembering that the vast majority of people who think about suicide don’t want to die, they are, however, finding it hard to stay alive. One of the key reasons for this is that they don’t always know what options are out there in their local communities to help them get through their crisis.
Developed in Birmingham by Common Unity for our communities, The Waiting Room Directory and The Waiting Room Resource Key Fob support people in crisis to link with both local and national services that can help them in their time of need.
The success of this intervention has been nothing short of miraculous since it was launched late 2016 this being due to the fact that The Waiting Room is instantly accessible, discreet, up-to-date and gets results. If you want to know more about how The Waiting Room works and how it could be introduced to your communities then please don’t hesitate to get in touch by emailing [email protected] www.the-waitingroom.org
We know that accessing up-to-date information to services you need can be frustrating and a lengthy process even on the internet. By utilising modern technology alongside a common-sense approach, we have a resource that can connect you with your local services even whilst you are on the go.
As part of Birmingham’s Urbrum website, The Waiting Room, is an on-line resource that connects you directly and seamlessly with local contacts for health and well-being services across the city. Whether you are connecting through your PC, your tablet or via the innovative Waiting Room Key, your health and well-being is at your finger-tips.
If you want to use The Waiting Room Key, or just scan directly from the website or posters in Birmingham, this film shows you exactly what needs to be done. The Waiting Room Key provides you with a modern-day well-being support solution to modern-day wellbeing needs.
Visit www.the-waitingroom.org or scan the QR code to access the video. follow us on instagram @commonunity follow us on twitter @common_unity_
In 2016, in the West Midlands, Common Unity had a vision, and this vision was to eradicate all paper-based directories and provide the ultimate online alternative. This alternative came to be known as The Waiting Room – a place for people from all walks of life to find support for their own health and wellbeing. With over 30,000 hits in its first year of existence, Common Unity has recognised that it’s time for The Waiting Room to evolve. The Waiting Room: The Next Generation.
Coming to your smart device in April 2018. Redefining Health and Social Care in the 21st Century. Please note we created this short in the likeness of the intro to the original Starwars movie by Lucas Arts.
At the age of 17 I knew there was something that had changed about my Auntie. The things she was saying didn’t make sense; It’s as if overnight she had suddenly started to see the world very differently to how she used to.
I felt like I had lost my Auntie and things got progressively worse for her.
As a strong family unit, we tried to support her every way we could both within the family and through locating services that supported people’s mental health. But services were very hard to come by and we struggled to find her the right support to help her quickly enough. Because of this Auntie was sectioned under the Mental Health Act and it was long time before I started to see glimpses of my Auntie again…that is, my real Auntie of old.
Fast forward 32 years and it struck me that its much the same today as it was then.
Services are hard to come by and for those services we do know about they often only come into play when the person has got to their most critical point. But this time I could do something about it as now I am a Company Director of a Birmingham Social Enterprise that has, through the development of social media and I.T. evolution, developed a way of linking people who are struggling to cope with services that can best meet their needs.
I got the idea for a solution to seamlessly linking individuals with support services when I realised the number of people who would carry the Supermarket Key Fobs on their person. By marrying the key-fob with a QR code which took the user straight to a local directory of intervention services and direct telephone call opportunities, I had found a way of discreetly and almost instantly, linking individuals with a mass of services that could help them in a range of areas.
Society is getting smart – so should the way we provide access to support in society. It was a case of no more wasted paper or out of date information.
The Waiting Room Resource Key and The Waiting Room Directory (TWR) housed within our Urbrum Website is gathering momentum in respect of demand locally including the Charities sector, the Local Authority, Police, Probation, HMP Birmingham, West Midlands Fire Service, Jaguar Land-Rover, Educational establishments and the local NHS.
Further interest outside Birmingham has escalated with Public Sector and Private Sector Organisations across the West Midlands and further seeing the benefits of this virtual one stop shop for Health and Wellbeing approach – being right at your fingertips and easy to bring to other parts of the country.
Recent reports concerning the NHS, Social Services, Mental Health Services, Charities, suicide and self-harm rates, the welfare state, debt, domestic violence and abuse, housing, sexual health and social isolation tells us that this approach has come at just the right time – this simple yet effective life changing intervention where communities are both informed and empowered to find solutions, is one big positive step forward to meet the challenge of helping people to best help themselves in an ever more turbulent climate of austerity.
In less than 6 months we have had 10,000 hits with over a third of all visitors coming back for more information. TWR keys are proving to be a vital way of ensuring people get in touch with local services when they need them.
If you are based in Birmingham and want to add your service to one or more of the 24 Life Domain Areas then get in touch and if you aren’t based in Birmingham but believe TWR would work for your organisation or your area then please get in touch.
It’s a clever way of linking people with local support with the least amount of stress, hassle or disappointment
Back in the 80’s there was a song called “Road To Nowhere” – pretty good as well – but when I think of online resource directories, or worse still, paper directories for health and social care services, they are often just like this song. They are, too often, a Road To Nowhere. The telephone numbers are often wrong or discontinued; the organisation you are searching for has either moved, closed or changed the services they provide; the website links don’t work or the pages you are looking for don’t exist anymore – so we designed The Waiting Room in Birmingham (known as TWR) and the TWR Resource Key.
It’s a clever way of linking people with local support with the least amount of stress, hassle or disappointment – access to information is instant, information is current and making contact is do-able for both professionals and the public. In December of last year we started testing the TWR Resource Key with 25 GP Surgeries to see how it went down with their staff and their patients. The results are astounding and demand for TWR both in Birmingham and wider is growing fast with both Professionals and the public realising that access to local services can be up-to-date and are quite literally at their finger-tips.
The Waiting Room (TWR) Resource Key provides an alternative approach to taking control of our own health and well-being – it does this by providing a virtual bridge between services in the community and the people that need those services.
Tested initially with 25 GP Surgeries across the South and Centre of Birmingham and several third sector providers, TWR continues to gain momentum with direct engagement from both the public and private sectors both within Birmingham and further afield. This innovative approach to linking communities with local services and national support has witnessed a tide of support from agencies including the Birmingham Mental Health Foundation Trust, the Local Authority, BITA Pathways, Birmingham Mind, HMP Birmingham, West Midlands Fire Services, Jaguar Landrover, Probation services to name but a few.
Our vision that each and every citizen of Birmingham has access to this ever-growing resource that ensures instant access to best support opportunities in “their own back yard” is becoming a more likely achievable goal. Within only 3 months of its initial launch, with a limited number of keys, TWR has now received over 3000 website visits from all parts of Birmingham of all ages. We are now being approached by a range of sector areas across the country with a keen interest in a tailored Waiting Room Resource Key for their communities – whether these communities are within a specific organisation, a specific area or have specific health related needs.
Common Unity have designed a mobile-friendly directory for services across Birmingham – The Resource Key works with all devices, from handheld to tablets.
Accessing information to specific services can be difficult at the best of times. In modern day life technology plays a key role in ensuring information is at your fingertips. The Waiting Room Resource Key gives you the opportunity to access your local services whilst on the go. The Quick Response Code on the Resource Key will take you straight to The Waiting Room, a place where you will be able to access information about local services that can support you.
Common Unity have developed the very first mobile designed support directory, giving its user direct access to support services anywhere across the UK. Within a few clicks on a smart phone the user will have direct access to a huge support service library colour coded to make it completely user friendly.
Accessing information to specific services can be difficult at the best of times. In modern day life, digital technology plays an increasing role in ensuring up to date information is at our fingertips.
The URBRUM resource key gives you the opportunity to access your local services whilst on the go. The Quick Response Code on the resource key will take you straight to The Meeting Room, a place where you will be able to access information about local services that can support you. Scan the QR code to access the URBRUM Resource Key video or visit urbrum.org.