Fermanagh Omagh Interagency Forum for Older People (FOIF)
The FOIF is an excellent working example of an approach to collaborative working. It exists to ensure information is shared amongst the partner organisations to try to prevent duplication and drive services for older people in the Fermanagh and Omagh district. Meeting bi-monthly the group membership comprises of a range of community, voluntary and statutory bodies on an operational level and is facilitated and chaired South West Age Partnership (SWAP). Information is filtered freely in both directions through SWAP ensuring older people have a voice and are kept up to date. In addition to information sharing at meetings SWAP distribute information via social media channels and email. This was especially important in response to the recent COVID-19 pandemic and ensured everyone was kept informed and reduced duplication in services when meetings moved online.
Helen Mills, Stroke Association Support Coordinator recently joined the FOIF and finds it invaluable;
‘Just to confirm how much I enjoy the Fermanagh Omagh Interagency Forum. Its brilliant to meet people from other agencies, learn of their services and be able to pass relevant up to date information onto my clients in the Fermanagh Omagh area.’
FOIF is a great way of bringing services together so that we can all learn from one another and use the information to help the people in our area.
Derek Moran, Make the Call; Department for communities is a member of the Fermanagh Omagh Interagency Forum for Older People.
‘We find this forum very beneficial and an excellent opportunity for networking with community and statutory organisations. We have built meaningful relationships which have resulted in a number of referrals requesting Needs Assessments for individuals and households across Fermanagh and Omagh areas to ensure they are not missing out on financial support’
Age NI, the leading charity for older people in Northern Ireland underlines this work.
‘SWAP have facilitated a great Interagency Forum for Fermanagh and Omagh driving partnership working and collaboration for over 10 years. Age NI recognises that being an older people led interagency this is a leading and excellent model of partnership working involving key stakeholders coming together with older people to plan, design and develop health and wellbeing services that matter the most to them promoting a positive approach to ageing. It’s an ideal interagency that can discuss issues raised by older people where key partners work alongside older people to come up with creative solutions to benefit the older population’