Sonia is a Senior Service Designer and Project Lead working across Innovation Unit’s portfolio. People’s personal narratives are the driving force behind her work and she is always looking for the most engaging and effective way to tell someone’s story. She is fascinated by how people relate to their community and environment and how these could be adapted to empower them and improve their lives. Sonia is currently leading the research and design strand of Better Endings, a year long innovation programme for end of life care in Lambeth and Southwark supported by Guy’s and St Thomas’ Charity. It aims to find new solutions in the health and social care and community environment to improve the experience of death, dying and loss.
Sonia recently led a co-design project in Rochdale borough, supporting commissioners and providers to design and deliver holistic, person-centred children’s services. One of these is #THRIVE, an aspirations focused emotional wellbeing hub for all children and young people. She also did ethnographic research for Hard Edges, a participatory storytelling project for the Lankelly Chase Foundation, aiming to bring to life the stories of people who face multiple disadvantages, including homelessness, addiction, mental illness and chronic poverty.
She is currently running a pilot in collaboration with the Bromley-by-Bow centre. The service Health Chronicles support people struggling to manage long term health conditions to explore their health through storytelling and self-reflection. It encourages people to become more actively involved in their own health and wellbeing.
Digging deep to really understand people’s lives and the systems around them generates new insights and the most powerful case for change.
Everybody deserves great support for themselves and for their families at the end of their lives. At the moment this doesn’t always happen. We’re bringing together end of life care experts with excited members of the community to mobilise a new vision of what better endings look like.
Why relationships are key to good social work
Positive interactions between social workers and families are essential, but too often policies and practices act as a barrier.