Brook is a young persons’ sexual health and wellbeing charity. Through innovative clinical services, digital support, tailored counselling and inspiring relationships and sex education, Brook allows young people to take charge of their sexual health and wellbeing.
In 2019, Brook took the decision to diversify our model and bid for a contract to deliver all-age sexual and reproductive health services across Cornwall and stretch our clinical delivery from a nurse-led to a consultant-led service. This included the provision of contraception, emergency contraception, STI testing and treatment, condom distribution, vaccinations, HIV pre- exposure prophylactic, junior doctor training and workforce development across the county.
Working in partnership with SH:24, an award-winning supplier of digital sexual health and reproductive services, we were successful in our bid and, in December 2019, we launched our first all-age, digitally led service. Building on more than 25 years’ experience delivering young people’s services across the county, Brook was well placed to meet the unique needs of the population. The integrated model takes a whole life approach to sexual and reproductive health and has a strong focus on education, early intervention and prevention for children, young people and those at risk, while adults without symptoms have access to a 24/7 digital service to support them to manage their own sexual health and protect our face to face offer for those most in need and at risk.
The previous service provider saw on average 400 clients per week with an entirely face to face offer. Between December and January, (which included the set-up month and Christmas), Brook averaged 442 clients per week – an immediate 10% increase. For the first quarter of our delivery, we had a total of 7,522 clinical and digital visitors.
Reviews of the service have been excellent and the digital-first offer has been very well received across the county. Cornwall County Council is very happy with what we have achieved and have been delighted that we were able to continue to operate during the challenges of lockdown – where the previous provider would have been unable to continue providing its services.
It was with SASC’s help that this was possible. We knew that mobilising this contract would take significant resources and so a £300,000 investment – structured as a working capital facility – allowed us to draw down the funds when we needed them. This support allowed us to comfortably secure and deliver the £17 million, seven-year contract without putting our other work at risk. It has also enabled us to develop our digital innovation which benefits the rest of the organisation and puts us in a stronger position for other contracts.
CEO, Brook Young People
Brook Young People repaid their loan in June 2021