My Best Life


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MBL intro

Kathryn Dingle

My Best Life is about charities, funders and young people working together to identify the most significant issues facing young people, and to co-design digital solutions.

Human Centred Design PART 1: Event Write-Up

Rose Anderson

I went to a virtual event on 30th September called Human Centred Design PART 1, hosted by Jess Gildener, who has worked in and with charities and social enterprises for nearly 20 years. Below are the highlights from this event. In her introduction, Jess described herself as a ‘reformed perfectionist’ and argued in favour of aiming for work that is ‘okay’ rather than ‘perfect’. That way, you can make incremental improvements and focus on the perspective of your users and their needs (rather than the perspective of yourself and the effort you put into it). Jess started by contrasting human… Read more “Human Centred Design PART 1: Event Write-Up”

Reflections on our project plan

Rose Anderson

As NPC works on My Best Life, a project exploring tech solutions to the problems faced by young people, we’re committed to posting regular updates and sharing our findings. Here, I’ll be sharing the key topics of discussion from our most recent Steering Group meeting. We want to understand why young people want to access services. We already know how young people access services, and now we want to explore what motivates them. This doesn’t just mean whether they’re looking for counselling, advice or recreational activities. It means we want to know whether it’s the service itself that motivates young… Read more “Reflections on our project plan”

Finding a locality for our next phase

Kathryn Dingle

My Best Life (MBL) is NPC’s collaborative project exploring tech solutions to the challenges young people face today. Based on what we’ve learned so far, we believe the first and most important challenge to pursue is in helping young people find the services and opportunities that are suited to them, based on their needs and interests, at the times when they need it most, and in ways that give them the control over what and how they choose to engage with services. To do so will involve mapping and codifying services and opportunities in new ways, which will help to… Read more “Finding a locality for our next phase”

Our approach for bringing in the right digital partner

Kathryn Dingle

The My Best Life team are in the middle of our tendering process to bring in a new digital agency to design and build a proof of concept for our service recommender. We wanted to share a little about our process for bringing in a digital agency. As always we are following Cast’s 10 digital design principles. The third principle is ‘build the right team,’ so we wanted to share how we are doing this to bring in a digital agency. Below I will outline our thought process and criteria for bringing the right agency into the project. What are… Read more “Our approach for bringing in the right digital partner”

We need a new digital partner!

Kathryn Dingle

My Best Life (MBL) is NPC’s collaborative project exploring tech solutions to the challenges young people face today. In 2019, My Best Life involved exploring early ideas and designing solutions that might enable young people to better access support. To tackle the challenge we brought onboard partners – Leap Confronting Conflict, UK Youth, The Mix, and Founders & Coders – to pool expertise in working with young people, creating digital services, and co-design. But most importantly, young people were and continue to be at the heart of the process and involved in key decisions. We explored the challenges of how… Read more “We need a new digital partner!”

Reflections on remote design sprints

Nicola Pritchard

Cara Leavey, Policy and Programme Officer, at the Health Foundation, shares her reflections on participating in the the My Best Life remote design sprints. When I found out about My Best Life back in January, I was excited to learn how similar it is to the Young people’s future health inquiry that we run at the Health Foundation. As Kathryn has already explained, our research agreed that in order to get the best start in life, young people need: a place to call home: secure and rewarding work; and good connections with their friends, family and community. The design sprints… Read more “Reflections on remote design sprints”

Updates to the MBL team!

Nicola Pritchard

A quick hello from me, the latest new recruit to the My Best Life team at NPC (bottom left – brown hair, awkward wave). I can’t wait to get stuck in alongside Kathryn, Tris and Charlotte, as we plan for Phase 3 of the programme. This is of course not the full team – we’ll be continuing to work closely with young people, youth practitioners, and charities, including our partners at The Mix, UK Youth, Founders and Coders and Leap Confronting Conflict, as we design and execute the next iteration of solutions to the challenges we set out at the… Read more “Updates to the MBL team!”

User insights from phase 2

Kathryn Dingle

We started the current phase of My Best Life, thinking about the issue of young people not being able to access the support and opportunities they need to succeed.  By working young people in a focus group and during our remote design sprints, we have explored how we might make it easier for young people to find and access services.  How did young people engage with the problems? When exploring the ideas of making services easier to find online and making more services available to young people, the young people kept circling back to the issue of not being able… Read more “User insights from phase 2”

How young people access services

Kathryn Dingle

We started the current phase of My Best Life, thinking about the issue of young people not being able to access the support and opportunities they need to succeed and technology can help improve this. Online connectivity is a huge part of our lives, especially during the lockdown. We have the answers to most questions at our fingertips, but many young people struggle to get the support they need. We are interested in exploring how we might make it easier for young people to find and access services.  By working young people in focus groups and during our remote design… Read more “How young people access services”

The Importance of Clear Communication

Gregor Thomson

Clear communication is an important part of design sprints and any collaboration between organisations. Communication needs to be clear and effective so that everyone involved has a clear understanding of the process and can get the most out of the sprint.  Within software development, we run daily stand-ups. They are so named as each member of the team will stand during them. Why? Because this means that we talk directly and don’t waste time with superfluous communication. The discomfort of standing up encourages us to be direct and short with what we want to say. Stand-ups give each person in… Read more “The Importance of Clear Communication”