We are passionate about using research to develop better and fairer ways of doing things and making sure that diverse (and often unheard) voices are at the heart of this process

 

Equality and Diversity

All our work aims to reduce the inequalities which marginalised groups experience. We have over a decade’s experience of supporting and challenging organisations to understand and reduce the barriers which can result from their policy and practice and find positive ways to promote equality for all their employees and the communities they serve.

 

We have broad experience of working with organisations to:

 

  • Conduct Equality Impact Assessments / Equality Analysis – ideally building internal capacity and ownership through the process. This can often involve a joint or parallel Health Impact Assessment, to better understand the social determinants of health arising from a programme or policy change;

 

  • Collect, interpret and present equality monitoring data;

 

  • Consult with diverse stakeholders and analyse local and national datasets to better understand the patterns of inequality and their possible causes;

 

  • Plan and communicate how to promote equality, both practically and strategically; and

 

  • Ensure, through this, they meet the duties of the Equality Act 2010.

 

The multi-disciplinary nature of our associate pool means that we can draw in consultants who have experience of your sector and/or can offer additional specialisms, such as business planning, commissioning, partnership working, etc.

 

Examples of our work include:

 

  • Equality and Health Impact Assessments of the Better + Together health and social care integration proposals for Mid-Nottinghamshire Clinical Commissioning Groups;

 

  • Equality Analysis of the public consultation of the New Health Deal for Trafford;

 

 

 

 

 

 

Supported Housing

From our current work with Ipsos Mori, we have gathered a national strategic overview of the Supported Housing sector to build a stronger evidence base regarding the sector in England, Scotland and Wales for the DWP/ DCLG.

 

Our understanding of the way in which the wider health, social care and housing economy works means we can help you to evidence your impact and support you in developing strategies, business plans and services.  Our strength is our capacity to collect and synthesise qualitative data (from the voices of residents, frontline and other staff) with quantitative - including financial - data.  The skillset of our associates’ network means we can build a full package for clients – including staff training, facilitation of workshops, service user involvement, and support to review and develop policy and procedures.

 

We have provided consultancy support across the sector - from Extra Care Housing to sheltered and retirement housing, and from supported living schemes to women’s refuges.

Our team’s experience of frontline hostel provision, of the commissioning of supported housing, and of supporting relatives in these settings means that we understand both their ethos and practical day-to-day realities.

 

Our projects in these areas include:

 

  • Evaluations of extra care housing for York Housing Association and Trust Housing Association (in Scotland);

 

  • Housing, care and support needs assessment/ business case development for Isle of Anglesey Council

 

  • Supporting L&Q and Hanover housing to develop strategies for older people’s housing and support

 

  • Evaluation and service plan development for Stockport Women’s Aid

 

All of these projects have involved engagement and consultation with service users and other stakeholders.

 

Older People

We have extensive experience of engaging with diverse older people (including those with affected by dementia) and finding out what matters most to them. Imogen’s book A Better Life: valuing our later years draws together the stories and messages of the Joseph Rowntree Foundation Better Life programme and presents a blueprint for a positive ageing society.

 

We have an impressive track record of working with services, including local authorities, government bodies and housing, care and advice providers to work out what they can do to improve quality of life, tackle age discrimination and build resilience, rather than respond only to crisis. This includes training and support for frontline practitioners to work in a more strengths-based way, including use of attachment theory and supporting positive risk taking.

 

We are also keen to look outside of services and understand how communities can be empowered to support each other in later life.

 

Examples of our work include:

  • National qualitative research project for the Social Services Improvement Agency in Wales to understand what helps older people to remain resilient and how this learning can inform a more preventative and integrated model of social care;

 

  • Research in Gloucestershire care homes, asking residents (many of whom had a diagnosis of dementia) what makes a good life in care (for Age UK Gloucestershire and the Gloucester Police and Crime Commissioner);

 

  • Research on older people’s experiences of depression and the support they need to inform the development of new service models (for Age UK);

 

  • Development of a series of research summaries, webinars and practice tools for Research in Practice for Adults on dementia, enablement and positive risk taking - click here to find out more about Imogen's work in this area. 

 

 

 

 

Inclusion

We are interested in understanding what works in promoting the inclusion of marginalised groups in communities, workplaces and services. We are keen to support organisations to make this happen and measure their success in doing so.

 

Our projects in this area are varied, and typically include evaluation, stakeholder consultation, action research, or consultancy support.

 

Examples include:

 

The Trust is aiming to re-develop the housing at Manor Gardens and, through this promote an inclusive and mutually supportive community for disabled and non-disabled people. IBA and Housing & Support Partnership have researched models of co-produced care and support; supported the Trust’s Board to articulate its vision; engaged existing residents in the process; and are supporting the Trust to identify suitable delivery partners for the project.

 

IBA and Housing & Support Partnership conducted two scoping studies on younger adults’ access to housing advice and suitable housing. The Trust then commissioned us to lead a development project to promote better access to housing advice and brokerage. This has involved commissioning Housing Options Scotland to run a pilot brokerage project supporting young adults with sight loss into housing; and developing an online housing advice guide which we are co-producing with young adults with sight loss.

 

  • Extratime: stakeholder consultation:

Extratime is a Brighton-based charity providing inclusive afterschool and holiday clubs for disabled and non-disabled children and young people. We did a comprehensive stakeholder consultation with parent carers, professional partners, children and young people and the Extratime staff team, funded by the Blagrave Trust and the Sussex Community Foundation. The stakeholder consultation has enabled Extratime to respond to opportunities in the external environment and create the robust evidence base required to bid successfully for a substantial new contract to deliver short breaks services for West Sussex County Council. Click here to read more about the proposals.

 

  • Camden Clinical Commissioning Group: access to healthcare by homeless people:

We are currently conducting an evaluation and cost-benefit analysis of the hospital discharge service and ‘StreetMed’ health outreach service delivered by St Mungo's. These services aim to ensure that homeless people with the most complex needs access mainstream healthcare and are appropriately supported after a hospital admission. 

 

We are also interested in how the arts can promote inclusion. We have, for example, evaluated a group work programme drawing on drama-based facilitation techniques for men wanting to improve their relationships, and written about the impact of prison theatre on drug users.

 

Imogen is the Chair of the Men’s Room, an arts and social care organisation working to empower marginalised young men on the streets of Manchester. See Imogen talk about the Men's Room below...

 

 

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