The Community Brokerage Network is a Community Interest Company and was established in February 2012. A Community Interest Company (CIC) is a type of limited company that has a structure and governance that aims to meet the needs of organisations that trade with a social purpose (social enterprises) or carry on other activities that benefit the community.
The Community Brokerage Network CIC, is subject to external regulation by the CIC Regulator whose duties are to consider applications to form a CIC, to ensure that a CIC complies with its legal obligations and to take enforcement action where serious infringements occur.
The Community Brokerage Network has an asset lock in place which ensures that its funds are used only to meet its social aims and should the company be dissolved, assets would be transferred to another organisation with similar aims, and is not for the benefit of the Directors.
The Community Brokerage Network was created in response to the need for independent information and support for people allocated an individual budget, in lieu of social work services. This budget allows people to have their social care needs met through the option of their choice from the 4 now set out in legislation. Experience and learning with East Ayrshire Council allowed this to be across all care groups and it is the intention to continue to make independent brokerage available to everyone who has been allocated an individual budget and to people who fund their own support, who may wish the help of a broker.
The Brokers who work with us are all self employed, and we have provided them with specific training in brokering for people and in a range of other related areas. They are all competent and able to support local people in East Ayrshire. We meet with them regularly and we have peer support arrangements to ensure that all of the Brokers are well supported and continue to develop creative ways of working. Most of the Brokers are local people and some have had personal experience of self-directed support and now use that experience to help other people and to encourage them to be creative in the use of the budget to meet their needs.
We work with East Ayrshire Council and with other Community Organisations. Social work staff and others often refer people to get the help of a Broker but people can also refer themselves. We have an arrangement that allows people to contact us directly. We are also supported in our work by the Joint Improvement Team, where Des McCart sits on our Board offering support and advice in relation to self-directed support. We are always learning and our work is influenced by feedback from people who are involved with us. We would love to hear back from you and feel free to contact us.