Wellbeing Our Way is about enabling people to manage their health in ways which matter to them. We work through community and voluntary organisations.


Welcome to the first edition of WOW Now, Wellbeing Our Way’s e-newsletter. You are receiving this newsletter due to your interest in Wellbeing Our Way or your leadership role in developing approaches which enable people to live well with their long term health needs.

This edition focuses on care and support planning and using coaching techniques to enable people to live well, in ways which matter to them. This follows our recent POW WOW (shared learning workshop) on the same theme. 

I hope you find the contributions inspiring and informative – Sam and Anya’s blog reflects on the transformative potential of health coaching for people with long term health needs and Macmillan have shared a case study detailing their electronic Holistic Needs Assessment (eHNA).  There are links to useful resources and profiles introducing you to some of the people involved with Wellbeing Our Way.

It’s heartening to meet many of you with such a commitment to developing meaningful partnerships between people with long term health needs and those working to support them. Please do feel free to
join us at one of our upcoming POW WOWs or get in touch to share examples of your great work in future editions of WOW Now. 

I’m very much looking forward to continuing working with you to develop ways in which we can most effectively enable people to live well, in the ways which matter to them.

Best wishes,

Natalie Koussa
Programme Lead – Wellbeing Our Way


Wellbeing Our Way is hosting a series of POW WOWs (shared learning workshops) which are based around approaches that enable people to live well with their long term health needs – for instance, peer support, supported self-management and person centred helplines and information. 

The POW WOWs bring together people working in charities and those with lived experience to develop approaches which enable people to live well. They are a great opportunity for shared learning between staff and volunteers who are working directly with people with long term health needs, as well as those who are developing these approaches. 

Our first POW WOW took place on 31 March. The session focused on care and support planning and coaching techniques. Many thanks to all those who joined us, especially our inspiring facilitators: 
You can see the highlights and key messages from the workshop at #WOWhealth

During the workshop, we discussed ideas for developing care and support planning and coaching approaches to enable people with long term health needs to live well.  We are at the initial stages of scoping how the emerging community of interest can best develop these approaches within voluntary and community organisations.

If you would like to find out more, share examples of your practice in this area, or get involved in the Care and Support Planning community of interest, please get in touch with
Care and Support Planning POW WOW on 31 March. 

Upcoming POW WOWs:

We have an exciting series of POW WOWs for the remainder of the year, including:
  • 27 May - Developing Peer support approaches to support people to live well with their health condition(s).
  •  23 June - Demonstrating impact – developing a theory of change to demonstrate the difference your organisation is making.
  • 26 August - Self-management support, with particular attention to meeting the needs of young people and meeting the needs of people whose capacity is changing (such as those with neurological conditions)
  • 14 October - Developing person-centred information and helplines 
  • 11 November – Enabling people to influence 
Read more and register here. We will confirm places as soon as we are able.

If you are a person with lived experience who would like to attend one of the POW WOWs, please see our Reward and Recognition policy for details of travel expenses and fees available.
WOW How 

WOW How is a regular feature which highlights some of the great work already existing within the community and voluntary sector. 
’Even now treatment has finished, I still require physical and psychological support, which has been highlighted and demonstrated by the Holistic Needs Assessment.’

In this edition, Amanda Watson shares Macmillan’s approach to electronic Holistic Needs Assessments (eHNA) . This approach uses an electronic questionnaire as a starting point for a person living with cancer (or other long term health needs) and those supporting them to develop a care and support plan based on the person’s own priorities for their life. Click here to read more about Macmillan's approach and its progress so far.

For more information about the eHNA, please feel free to get in touch with Amanda Watson (eHNA Implementation Project Manager) or the eHNA team.

If you would like to share an example of promising practice for inclusion in future editions, please get in touch with Natalie. We would be particularly interested in examples around peer support or ways in which organisations are demonstrating the impact of their work.
Meet the Steering Group
Barbara Babcock is Chair of the Transverse Myelitis Society and a member of Wellbeing Our Way’s steering group. Here is a sneak   preview of her profile.  

What sparked your interest in getting involved with Wellbeing Our Way?

When I read Wellbeing Our Way's programme objectives, I immediately saw an alignment between my professional skillset (as a life coach and adult learning specialist) and how we at the Transverse Myelitis Society empower our members with the information and support they need to self-manage their condition so that they experience a good quality of life. I wanted to get involved to share best practice and learn from others.
Tell us something about yourself...

Emma Frost is involved with Wellbeing Our Way, with a particular interest in person centred care and support planning. Here, she tells us a bit about herself and what living well means to her.

I have worked for the MS Society for 7 years and I’m currently the Senior Professional Engagement Officer for health and social care. I work with health and social care professionals and their affiliated bodies to raise the MS agenda. I also have lived experience in that I was born with Cerebral Palsy and diagnosed with Relapsing Remitting Multiple Sclerosis 14 years ago.   

What inspired you to be part of Wellbeing Our Way?
The opportunity to explore co-production and person centred practice was the main driver as this is something I personally believe needs embedding within health and social care.

What’s your number 1 tip about how you live well?
Information is power! Become the expert in your condition and don’t be afraid to advocate or challenge. 

What has happened to make you feel most in control of your health?
Being central to the joint decision-making process around my health. Specifically, identifying my own multi disciplinary team of GP, MS Nurse, physiotherapist and speech & language therapist. Their joint-working and information sharing has improved continuity and maximised my health and wellbeing. 

What change would you like to see in how charities enable people to live well, in the ways which matter to them?
Resources for people affected by conditions to be confident in their self-management and advocacy. Specifically at the MS Society we have worked tirelessly to influence The Care Act and influence fairer eligibility criteria within social care. To compliment this, the MS Society is also developing a Model of Excellence Program which encompasses 4 work streams which will see co-production between people affected by MS working with health and social care professionals to influence and improve services.

Tell us something surprising about yourself.
I’m a person centred planning facilitator, disability rights trainer and I travelled across the USA at the age of 15 with 29 other disabled teenagers following the route of the Gold Rush from LA to Alaska. 

Click here for the latest WOW blog
Latest Blog:
I nearly didn’t do it…

Sam Peaceful-Day lives with Transverse Myelitis and is supported by Anya de Iongh, her self-management coach, to manage her health needs and live well. This happens through My Health My Way, which offers personalised support for people in Dorset to help them live well and feel better whatever their condition.

In their blog, Sam and Anya reflect on the difference health coaching has made for Sam’s life. Here's a sneak preview...

My new doctor gave me a leaflet. I ignored it, just like I had ignored the depression I was in, due to years of pain and fatigue caused by Transverse Myelitis which makes me one in a million! It was a rare virus that affected my nervous system. But like millions of others my days had become disorganised and shorter - my life mostly put on HOLD.

Read the rest of Sam and Anya's blog here


Read the rest of Barbara's profile here


Useful Resources 

Care and Support Planning Resources, including the Guide to Care and Support Planning and a series of short films – National Voices
Narratives for person centred, coordinated care – National Voices. The narratives set out the things that are most important to people who use services, across a range of conditions, disabilities and needs.
Delivering Care and Support Planning. Supporting Implementation of the Care Act 2015. - Think Local Act Personal (TLAP). This is primarily aimed at local authorities but includes some great case study examples.
What does good care and support planning look like? - TLAP coproduction group
Training professionals in motivational interviewing – The Health Foundation
Peer Coaching Learning Manual – NESTA. This is aimed at professional peer to peer coaching but includes some very useful summaries of generic coaching techniques.
Electronic Health Needs Assessment (e-HNA) - Macmillan
Recovery Package approach - Macmillan
Short film for health professionals interested in using the electronic Health Needs Assessment - Macmillan
Care Planning and Musculoskeletal Health – Arthritis Research UK
Animation introducing collaborative care and support planning – RCGP
Good Practice in support planning and brokerage – DH
Paths to Personalisation in Mental Health – NDTi

My Organiser - Macmillan
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