What have the team been up to?
Our Multiply team have had an exciting few months managing Multiply and connecting with our wonderful partners. Formerly both part of our ATI team, Christine and Sophia have been keen to get stuck into a new venture and have a hand in making maths accessible.
They’ve represented at various events, monitored paperwork, collaborated with partners on merchandise, brainstormed engagement activities- and even met PM Rishi Sunak! (Not bad for a couple of months in post).
One of the more recent events the Multiply team and I attended, was Building Best Practice meeting organised by Autism Plus’s Charlotte Witty. Sitting around a table in Bonnet’s café, we talked all things engagement, and opportunities for cross-partner collaboration with Futureworks NY and Age UK.
Whilst the meeting centred in part on how to engage more people in conversations about maths and finances (using things like transport timetables & benefits checks), it was also an opportunity for our partners to reflect on how they are currently supporting their participants. Monthly budgeting, using easy to understand language around finances, creating repayment plans, and engaging participants in numbers fun through Futureworks’ wood and upcycling workshop- Furnitureworks– have all been on the agenda for our Scarborough partners.
Troubleshooting also played a part in the discussion, namely, how to combat the vicious cycle that many of the participants are stuck in. It’s an all too familiar story, individuals finding work and coming off benefits only to realise they can no longer afford rent, food or basic amenities and were financially better off before. We talked about a ground-up approach, equipping participants early on with the skills to budget effectively and linking in with Job Centre Work Coaches so that new claimants can learn how to manage their money from their first claim.
For our partners, it’s a collaborative, innovative effort with their participants to assess where their money is going, and how to make it stretch further, but it’s also about addressing accessibility issues. As a result, they’ve gone back to the basics many of us were never actively taught; making comprehensive word documents on how to understand things like taxes, wage slips, ESA (Employment Support Allowance) payments, student loans, energy bills, and the benefits system.
For Autism Plus, creating visual budgeting and scheduling aids has also played a large role in supporting their neurodiverse participants too- “a visual for so many people just works, it worked for kids at school so why can’t it work for adults”.
Our partners are doing a brilliant job of supporting their participants, it was a pleasure to hear first hand the creative, considerate approaches they’re employing to inspire numbers confidence! For more information about what our Multiply team & partners are up to, keep checking in. Remember to check out our Multiply project page too.
A keen storyteller, collaborator and engagement enthusiast, Laura works alongside Hannah as the Impact Coordinator, where she measures and highlights the impact of Better Connect across its business, programmes, and partnerships. She does so by working closely with colleagues, partners, participants, and stakeholders to gather information and stories, which she then translates into a range of engaging content across Better Connect’s channels.
Building relationships and networks is a large part of Laura’s role, alongside ensuring the ‘’Better Connect story’’ is woven throughout all communications.
Laura’s favourite part of the role is connecting with the faces behind the case studies and giving voice to their experiences.Learn more about Laura