Speak Out On Line is now Daybook

Our prototype digital diary was designed and co-created with people with learning disabilities and aims to improve the conversation and communication between People with Learning Disabilities and those that provide support and services. 

activities being done by pilot groups, using pictures and ipads

The Story So Far…

People with learning disabilities often find it difficult to respond to questionnaires and consultations that affect their lives and the services they receive or may want to receive. Many people say that standard forms are not accessible to them and the timescale are too short for them to make considered decisions.

Professionals wanted a product that gave them good information about what was important to people with learning disabilities.

Our project team took on that challenge and have been working with people across the country who have a learning disability, finding out how they want to communicate about their experiences.

We called the project ‘SPOOL’ – Speak Out Online. Part of our work in different areas was to gather suggestions for a new name (SPOOL just wasn’t going to work for anyone!). As a result of the numerous suggestions, the name ‘Daybook’ was chosen.


How Daybook has been developing

Following the second co-creation visits in our pilot sites, our project team worked on ideas that could go forward into early prototyping, using journey mapping storyboards to test ideas and plot the activities for different people who would use the service.

This helped:

  • daybook logoExplore how the experience of different users could be improved
  • Shape design ideas and shape decisions
  • Explore frame by frame the possible online experience

The team found that most people liked the idea of a digital diary as a way of logging their experiences on different topics.


The Results - Daybook the Digital Diary

daybook dashboard - individualA digital diary can be incredibly valuable as many people and services already use paper diaries to record activities. But most of the diary systems we have seen are paper based and are not used by the person with a learning disability; they are written in by a family member, carer or service provider. 

Using Daybook, individuals can upload their entries onto a secure digital platform. They could comment on things as they happen and look back at them, providing a more immediate and interactive record of what is important to each individual. 

This gives the person power and control over their entries.

Each person can use the accessible buttons to choose their activity type, add details of how the activity made them feel, and include a photo, video or text information about anything they like that is associated with that activity.

The digital diary could be; 

  • A place to share a story as a one-off or a place to go back to and build a bank of stories.
  • A place to share stories about a topic of the user’s choice, there could be a prompt; “What is your story about?” before or after they upload, or about a topic.                            
  • A chance to reflect on past experiences as well as current.
  • Private; shared with select people; shared with service providers.


What do professionals see?

Our prototype Daybook is now being piloted in the Local Authority areas now.

When they have completed a diary entry, an individual can give Local Authorities or services permission to view their entries.

There is a dashboard for each Local Authority and for services within that authority, where they can see the number of entries made against each category and can ask permission to view the entries.

The pilot areas will be using Daybook in a range of services: Residential home/ Day care/Shared Lives/ Special Schools and Colleges, and Support Employment. The trial period will last for six weeks. During this time they will be reporting back to the Daybook team and working with an independent evaluator.


Contact Us

For more information contact sue.reed@voiceability.org or ali.fawkes@voiceabiltiy.org.

Read more news stories