Our new site for Social Care green paper

CSI homepage
Puffbox’s latest project in the health sector is Care Support Independence, a WordPress-based website in support of the forthcoming green paper on funding and delivering social care. Sadly though, I can’t present it as another victory for WordPress, as it’s a rebuild of a site that already ran on WP.
The original CareAndSupport website was launched last summer; but truth be told, it had fallen off the rails a bit since. I was asked to rework the site, following the very successful model of the Our NHS Our Future site built for Lord Darzi’s NHS review – and, perhaps crucially, giving hands-on control to the team’s experienced in-house writer.
At least to begin with, we’ve consciously kept the design very close to what went before: bold blocks of colour, rounded corners, fairly plain text on a white background. This should make people feel more comfortable in the transition from old site to new; and it has allowed us to concentrate on the mechanics of the move. The new WordPress theme – built from scratch, as usual – is a wonder of minimalism, with all pages (bar the homepage) being rendered using the same index.php template: it should make it much easier to step up a gear when the green paper is published.
It’s the first time I’ve built pages using Yahoo’s YUI Grids CSS – and it certainly won’t be the last. It made laying out the page as easy, and as reliable cross-browser, as old-skool table markup. Have a play with this excellent ajax-powered grid builder to see how it all works; if you like it, I highly recommend this one-page cheat sheet. It’s a pretty good story in terms of HTML validation, too: the only error picked up by the W3C validator is the use of aria-required in the default WordPress comment template.
Having moved the site successfully, we can start thinking more ambitiously about future functionality, design and content. There’s a clue as to the direction of our thinking in the link to the team’s Facebook group.

2 thoughts on “Our new site for Social Care green paper”

  1. Another lovely site, good work – I’ve just added it to digitalgovuk. I particularly like the prominent role of officials – alongside ministers – in hosting the debate.
    What’s the thinking behind hosting the conversation on Facebook rather than the site itself – is it felt to be safer to have an unmoderated discussion at arms’ length?
    Also, I’m not sure what’s intended in the ‘In the Media’ section, but its a bit squiffy at the mo.

  2. You’re very kind, Steph – possibly too kind. Thanks for spotting the ‘in the media’ issue; it should resolve itself tomorrow. It’s a category of posts which hasn’t yet been started.
    We took the Facebook route for various reasons, more practical than presentational to be honest. But yes, it might well be better received if it happens in a neutral space. That’s certainly something I’ll be looking out for.

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