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NCF Leading the Way paper 3: added value and social capital

Paper, case studies | June 2012

This paper is the third of three produced by IPC on behalf of the National Care Forum (NCF), examining the distinctive contribution of the not-for-profit sector to improving the quality of social care provision. The particular focus of this final paper is the concept of social capital and added value and describes how these concepts are particular features of the approach of organisations in the not-for-profit sector.

The paper commences with a definition of social capital, its task of bringing people together, and the positive effect of collective communal action. It explains how adding value through increasing social capital might involve making sure services offer opportunities for local people to be more engaged and active. It describes how increasing social capital adds value to services. Social care commissioners frequently achieve added value by looking to the not-for profit sector – a sector that has strong links with communities, experience of working with volunteers and an understanding of local employment conditions.

The paper continues by describing distinct areas where social care services can offer added value through social capital. It presents examples of the kind of differences made by members of the National Care Forum in terms of: leadership; volunteering; providing opportunities for service users to contribute; community and cohesion; and mutuality and shared identity. It gives illustrations under each of these headings of the kind of positive results not-for-profit organisations can achieve.

For further information please contact Keith Moultrie at IPC


Tel: 01225 484088