At Signpost we are keen to make sure people can choose from a range of quality support brokers.
Being a support broker can be a very satisfying and rewarding role. We particularly value the experience of people who have mental health needs or have used mental health services. If you would like to become a Signpost support broker and have personal experience of using mental health services, there is support and training available.
Signpost is working collaboratively to develop support, training and information for people with a personal experience of mental health services who are interested in becoming support brokers.
Please click on the following links for more information.
In order to register as a Signpost Broker you need to demonstrate the following:
Values and attitudes
• Committed to the ability and right of the individual to make choices as citizens with access to the same resources and opportunities as other citizens.
• Willing to accept direction from the individual and to work on the terms agreed with the individual – without taking control.
• Able to distinguish between their own interests, aspirations and concerns, and those of the individual, in order to focus entirely on the individual’s requirements.
• Able to act in an impartial, unbiased way, free of loyalty to service commissioners or promotion of any particular provider of services.
• Recognises and values diversity, different cultures and backgrounds when working with individuals.
• Able to appreciate the value of social inclusion and being part of a community.
• Friendly and approachable appearance and manner with a communication style which develops positive relationships with people in services and community networks.
• Able to identify the limits of their own competence and experience and act appropriately when those limits are reached.
• Able to act honestly and responsibly within an ethical framework and to be trusted to work with individuals who might be legally defined as ‘vulnerable adults’.
• Can be trusted to submit accurate reports of the work they have carried out and the expenses incurred to the individual and to others as required.
Knowledge and experience
• Has an understanding of mental health and wellbeing and their impact upon individuals, their families, friends and those that support them.
• Understands the health and social care ‘system’ and the movement towards ‘personalisation’ of services.
• Has a detailed knowledge of the local community, public resources and services.
• Understands the role of the support broker, including the differences between the care co-ordinator and the support broker role.
Skills and abilities
• Able to use person-centred approaches to work with people to define their strengths, abilities, needs and goals within the context of the individual’s family, friends and supporters.
• Able to be assertive, in ways and on occasions that are appropriate, to promote the interests of the individual.
• Able to act appropriately when there are indications that the individual may be the victim of abuse, exploitation or other dangers, in their present situation or in a situation that may result from the plans being made with the individual.
• Able to act appropriately towards situations which may present risks to the broker’s reputation; or risks to the quality and reputation of independent brokers and Signpost UK.
• Able to review a complex problem situation, identify options, decisions and the information needed to move towards a solution.
• Able to carry out research by phone, internet and personal visits to gather information about relevant resources and opportunities.
• Has the self-management skills to organise their own time.
• Sufficient computer, literacy and numeracy skills in order to calculate an itemised budget, write a structured and grammatical report, use IT for internet research and word processing.
• Able to travel independently within the geographical area that the broker offers a service.
• Has the time and the capacity to offer brokerage services.
• Able to be subject to a successful enhanced CRB disclosure.
• Able to demonstrate eligibility to work in the UK.
Main purpose of role
To support individuals provided with an estimated personal budget to identify resources that enable them to choose the best support options that fit their assessed eligible social care needs and preferred lifestyle choice.
To help individuals provided with an estimated personal budget to prepare a support plan in accordance with Kent County Council or Medway Council guidelines in order that a personal budget may be approved.
To support individuals with a personal budget to commission resources identified as part of their support plan in order that the support plan may be implemented.
Position in organisation
The post holder will work directly for the person or their appointed representative in order that the person may stay in control and live the life they choose.
The post holder will register with Signpost UK as a registered broker and operate in accordance within the Signpost Brokerage Quality Charter and Signpost’s policies, procedures and guidelines.
The role may include any of the following depending on the appointing individual’s requirements.
• To provide information to the person and/or their appointed representative about the choices available to meet their assessed social support needs and the support planning and approval process.
• Develop and maintain a comprehensive knowledge of services available in the local community including existing information, advice and guidance, resources and directories, in order to offer the broadest range of options to individuals in developing their support plans.
• Develop and maintain links with community organisations and service providers in order to enable successful signposting to their services.
• To signpost the individual to information about employing support if the person chooses to employ someone directly as part of their support plan.
• To identify the level of support and assistance the person requires and would like in order to prepare a costed support plan for approval.
• To engage and support the person in developing a vision of preferred lifestyle choices and find solutions to meet their assessed eligible social care needs.
• To support the person to prepare a costed support plan in accordance with local authority requirements or prepare the plan on the person’s behalf if requested to do so.
• To support the person to submit their completed support plan, attending meetings with the person if requested to do so.
• To support the person to consider the full range of community resources and services available to them when putting together their support plan.
• To support the person to identify tools and processes to manage their actual personal budget.
• To assist the person to identify and manage risk in relation to the later implementation of their support plan.
• To liaise with others such as the person’s family, friends and professionals involved in their support as appropriate and at the person’s request