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Scholarship winners head to Scotland

The Greg Vickery Scholarship, valued at $25,000, opens doors for Red Cross people to improve the way we deliver our vital work to communities in need.

Friday May 1, 2015

Greg Vickery Scholarship 2014 recipients Patrick Bae and Moira Charters are travelling to Scotland and New Zealand as part of their research project

Applications for 2015 are now open  

Now in its fifth year, applications are currently open for a member and volunteer to partner with an employee, to travel and learn for Red Cross. 

If you're someone whose passionate about what you do, and want to travel and learn for Red Cross, apply online before 27 May 2015.  

2014 Scholarship winners

IT student Patrick Bae volunteers at Red Cross teaching older people to use computers and is thrilled to be a 2014 recipient of the scholarship alongside Moira Charters who works in Community Programs in Western Australia.  

"I came to Red Cross looking to use my IT skills and have been volunteering for 12 months, and the scholarship gives us an awesome opportunity to show new innovations," he said.  

"By travelling to many places we can see the best practices first hand, so it's very practical research."  

Moira and Patrick are passionate about empowering clients to be more involved in the design of social programs. They have embarked on a year long research project which involves travelling to Europe and New Zealand to learn about the latest trends in 'co-design', something which is a buzzword in both the worlds of social programs and technology.   

Putting power in the hands of the client defines the co-design approach, and as Moira says, "Co-design goes beyond consultation. It's a fundamental shift in the balance of power between service professionals and users".  

"It means partnering with our clients to design, evaluate and deliver programs; ultimately having consumers involved in every aspect of a service including recruitment and siting on an organisation's Board, " she said.  

The trip to Europe will see Moira attend the Scottish Co-Production Conference, visit a range of co-design projects, policy experts in government and at the Scottish Community Development Centre.  

"I'm looking forward to the conference because it's not just organisations who will present; it's very much about the consumer. I want to talk to consumers and hear how this approach has worked for them and changed their experiences of service delivery. "  

The team will present their research to the highest levels of Red Cross to demonstrate ways to build on an already proud legacy of putting people at the heart of its work. Moira hopes that the research will offer ideas on how Red Cross can further embed a strong culture of community driven programming.  

"Our clients are individuals, and at a particular moment in time, life may not be rosy, but we should never lose sight of the fact that they have a unique story, valuable skills, knowledge and experience which needs to be listened to.  

"I'd like to see the consumers voice be heard and used to build the foundations and ongoing evaluation of services, watching services grow from the bottom up," she said.  

Patrick and Moira will travel to New Zealand in July to attend the Co-design Conference in Auckland, to compare and contrast the different approaches and innovation happening in the world of Co-Design.