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Collaboration NI - Alliance Contracting

Thursday, September 22, 2016 - 09:30 to 14:30
Skainos Centre, 239 Newtownards Road, Belfast, BT4 1AF




We are delighted to announce our speakers on the day.

We will hear keynote addresses from

There will then be a panel discussion which will include local input from:

Further details on each of our speakers below. More speakers to be announced in due course.In September 2015 CollaborationNI* hosted an event that focussed its attention on Alliance Contracting.  The question asked at the event was:

Alliance Contracting, is this the answer to radically change how public services are delivered through a partnership between Voluntary, Community & Social Enterprise (VCSE) Sector and the Public Sector?

The event served to introduce and explain the fundamentals of alliance contracting as a new form of partnership working to the VCSE and public sector.  The feedback from the event was extremely positive and therefore, we have decided to host another roundtable to examine the concept of alliance contracting in more detail.  

A report produced in England on alliance contracting cited this form of collaboration as the tool to ‘enable the NHS to work better with the third sector and get better at providing care in the community. Its pathway of action is ‘horizontal,’ which is different to the ‘vertical’ contracting structures that are characteristic of a prime contractor sub-contracting out to smaller bodies.  It requires proactive commissioning and a more thoughtful approach to procurement. So that commissioners and providers may have the knowledge and resource they need to effectively deploy alliance contracting, it is clear that collaborative commissioning should be explicitly supported by the next government. Alongside national guidelines, however, third sector bodies need to be proactive in encouraging the sector to recognise the benefits of alliancing, and how to be a truly valuable part of integrated care in the NHS.

In addition to receiving a broad overview on this form of partnership working, we will specifically focus our attention on the role of Commissioners

Date:        22 September 2016

Time:      9.30am - 2.30pm

Venue:    Skainos Centre, 239 Newtownards Road, Belfast, BT4 1AF

To book:  Please contact rachel@co3.bz 

Please see final Agenda here


Chief Executive


Chief Executive of Certitude, a not for profit organisation providing a range of person centred support options for 1,500 people with learning disabilities and mental health needs in London. Previously Chief Executive of Southside Partnership, she led the merger of it with Support for Living to form Certitude in 2010.  Aisling started her career in psychology and has spent the past 20 years working within not for profit organisations, seeking to improve opportunities for people with learning disabilities and people with mental health needs.  Certitude is one of five organisations [2 not for profits, a local authority, a CCG and an NHS Foundation Trust] that formed an alliance to offer people with serious mental illness who currently go into long-term, expensive hospital rehabilitation wards or registered care homes the chance to live more independently in the community. Aisling chairs the Alliance Leadership Team that governs the Lambeth Integrated Personalised Support Alliance (IPSA).

Born in Ireland Aisling has lived and worked in London for 25 years.

Denis O’Rourke

Assistant Director, Integrated Commissioning in Mental Health

NHS Lambeth CCG

Denis is the Assistant Director, Integrated Commissioning in Mental Health for NHS Lambeth CCG. Denis deals specifically with strategic aims of The Collaborative and the Collaborative Commissioning framework.

Colum Conway

Chief Executive


Colum has been NISCC Chief Executive since May 2013.  Prior to his appointment to the NISCC, Colum was Chief Executive of Extra Care, a not for profit organisation working in Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland supporting independent living through the provision of home care. Other roles include Director of Operations for NIPPA (The Early Years Organisation), Family and Childcare social work in Craigavon and Banbridge HSC Trust, Barnardos in Dublin, and Child and Family Care with the Daughters of Charity in Dublin. 

Colum has a Masters in Social Work from Queens University Belfast and a Masters in Management from the Institute of Public Administration in Dublin. Colum has significant experience in social work, social care and early years across the statutory and not for profit sectors.  He has served as a Board Member of the United Kingdom Home Care Association (UKHCA), the Council for Awards in Care, Health and Education (CACHE), the Sector Skills Council Skills for Care and Development, the Independent Health & Care Providers (IHCP), Care Alliance Ireland and CO3. 

Iain Deboys

Commissioning Lead

Health and Social Care Board

Iain is the Commissioning Lead for Belfast in the Health and Social Care Board and Chair of the Healthy Ageing Strategic Partnership which involves a range of statutory, community and voluntary organisations.


Paul Cavanagh

Assistant Director, Commissioning Lead (Western Area and Ambulance Services)

Health and Social Care Board

Paul Cavanagh is Assistant Director, Commissioning Lead (Western Area and Ambulance Services) for the Health and Social Care Board.  In the past, he has been Commissioning Manager for Mental Health and Learning Disability with Western Health and Social Services Board; has managed both the Western Local Commissioning Group and North-West Local Health and Social Care Group; and set up the Western Health Action Zone. 

He is formerly the Chief Executive of City Centre Initiative in Derry, the town centre management company, and Coordinator of the North West Community Network, a leading community development support agency.  Paul sits on the Comic Relief UK Grants Committee; is a former member of the Board and NI Committee of the Big Lottery Fund and a former NI Charities Commissioner.


Heather Moorehead


NI Confederation for Health and Social Care 

Heather Moorhead was appointed as the Director of the NI Confederation for Health and Social Care (NICON) in May 2010.  NICON is a membership body for the organisations that make up the HSC in Northern Ireland. The organisation has three key functions; representation, networking and communication, research and best practice. 

NICON is an integral part of the NHS Confederation which represents the interests of the NHS bodies and England and Wales.

Previously Heather served as the Chief Executive of the Northern Ireland Local Government Association (NILGA) since its establishment in 2002 representing the interests of local government.  

Prior to this, Heather qualified as an Environmental Health Officer from the Ulster University in 1986. And worked as an EHO until 1997. Heather attained an MBA from the UUJ in 1997 and in the same year set up an NGO, the Sustainable NI Programme to promote sustainable development policy and practice. 


*CollaborationNI was commissioned and financed by the Building Change Trust and is delivered in partnership by CO3, NICVA, and Stellar Leadership.

For further information please see www.collaborationni.org