21 10, 2019

Journal article co-authored by Fulfilling Lives partnership wins Outstanding Paper in the 2019 Emerald Literati Awards

By |2019-10-21T15:15:47+00:00October 21st, 2019|Categories: News|

Bruno Ornelas (Head of Services at VOICES) and Andy Meakin (Project Director of VOICES) were among authors who contributed to the article “Increasing access to Care Act 2014 assessment and personal budgets among people with experiences of homelessness and multiple exclusion: a theoretically informed case study.” The article, published in Housing, Care and Support has just been selected by the editorial team as an Outstanding Paper in the 2019 Emerald Literati Awards. It was noted by the editorial team as an exceptional piece of work. The full article can be found as open access here.

The paper discusses the progress that is being made in Stoke-on-Trent to increase access to Care Act 2014 assessments and personal budgets amongst those experiencing multiple disadvantage. […]

23 09, 2019

Psychologically Informed Environments (PIE) – Our early learning points

By |2019-09-23T13:06:48+00:00September 23rd, 2019|Categories: Blog|

Dr Ray Middleton is the Workforce Development Lead for the National Lottery Community Fund’s Fulfilling Lives programme in Newcastle and Gateshead (FLNG). With a special interest in trauma-informed care, Ray is piloting a programme to develop Psychologically Informed Environments (PIE) in frontline services combining an innovative ‘Open Dialogue’ approach to mental health with PIE using the ‘Ladder4Life’ framework he developed.

A Psychologically Informed Environment (PIE) is a space which considers ‘the psychological make up – the thinking, emotions, personalities and past experience – of its participants in the way that it operates’ (Johnson et al., 2012).

As described in my last blog at FLNG we have long been enthusiastic promoters of PIE and have used our experience to develop and deliver a PIE training programme that supports other local […]

16 09, 2019

Our Fulfilling Lives journey into the land of PIE…

By |2019-09-18T10:36:33+00:00September 16th, 2019|Categories: Blog|

Dr Ray Middleton is the Workforce Development Lead for the National Lottery Community Fund’s Fulfilling Lives programme in Newcastle and Gateshead (FLNG). With a special interest in trauma-informed care, Ray is piloting a programme to develop Psychologically Informed Environments (PIE) in frontline services combining an innovative ‘Open Dialogue’ approach to mental health with PIE using the ‘Ladder4Life’ framework he developed.

A Psychologically Informed Environment (PIE) is a space which considers ‘the psychological make up – the thinking, emotions, personalities and past experience – of its participants in the way that it operates’ (Johnson et al., 2012).

FLNG have been enthusiastic promoters of PIE since our programme began in 2014.  Evidence from our initial PIE pilots in 2016 (described in this report) highlighted the need for good […]

29 08, 2019

What has Fulfilling Lives achieved – new briefing published today

By |2019-08-29T12:29:09+00:00August 29th, 2019|Categories: News|

Today we publish the fourth paper in our series of briefings on multiple needs. This draws on data and insight from the 12 Fulfilling Lives partnerships, specifically focusing on what the programme has achieved over the first four years. Engaging with over 3,000 beneficiaries experiencing multiple disadvantage and otherwise excluded from services, the paper highlights a number of other successes of the programme. For those beneficiaries who remain with the programme and continue to make progress, there is an uptake in pro-social activities that characterise a full and fulfilled life.

 

To learn more, view the briefing online.

To understand more about the methods and data used, view the accompanying method notes.

4 07, 2019

Multiple Disadvantage Day, Take One

By |2019-07-04T09:15:28+00:00July 4th, 2019|Categories: Blog|Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , |

Chris Milner joined the Fulfilling Lives national evaluation team in February 2019. In his first blog he explores the role of art and emotion in recovery and raising awareness. 

The first Multiple Disadvantage Day took place on July 3rd 2019. The day marked an important stepping stone towards tackling the stigma associated with complex experiences of homelessness, offending, substance misuse and mental ill-health. These disadvantages are so often co-existing that it is essential that they are addressed together, and that we #seethefullpicture. By raising awareness of the reasons behind people’s circumstances, Multiple Disadvantage day aimed to encourage people to think before making a judgement.

[…]

2 07, 2019

What makes a difference – new briefing published

By |2019-07-02T13:13:21+00:00July 2nd, 2019|Categories: News, Project Evaluation|Tags: , , , , |

The third paper in our series of briefings on multiple needs has been published today. The series draws upon data collected by Fulfilling Lives partnerships on the beneficiaries they have supported.

We know that too often people with multiple needs are denied the support they need, labelled as too high risk to work with or seen as making ‘life-style choices’ to be homeless or self-medicate trauma with substances. The Fulfilling Lives programme shows it is possible to engage and support people with the most complex needs; those who mainstream services may exclude or refuse to help due to perceived high levels of risk and challenging behaviour.

Briefing 3 explores what makes a difference when working with this group of people, and how progress differs amongst the group.

20 06, 2019

Homelessness: We Know the Issues, but What About the Solutions?

By |2019-06-24T15:36:33+00:00June 20th, 2019|Categories: Blog|Tags: , , , , , |

Homelessness is in the news and has caught the public’s concern. But what I find frustrating is that relatively little is discussed about the solutions. Partnerships delivering the Fulfilling Lives programme have helped to make significant progress in reducing homelessness and rough sleeping. Among Fulfilling Lives beneficiaries we see a reduction in rough sleeping from 25 per cent to 17 per cent during their first year on the programme. I feel that partnership efforts deserve to play a central role in the discussion.

Our report, Promising Practice, explored how Fulfilling Lives partnerships have used Housing First approaches. Overall, the evidence suggests a high level of tenancy sustainment amongst Housing First beneficiaries.

Housing First is a client-centred model that supports individuals into independent […]

14 06, 2019

Understanding multiple needs – second in our series of briefings out now

By |2019-06-14T13:32:12+00:00June 14th, 2019|Categories: News, Project Evaluation|

Today we publish the second in our series of briefings on multiple needs, drawing on data collected by Fulfilling Lives partnerships on their beneficiaries.

People with multiple are diverse and should not be seen as a uniform group. It is important that those designing services for people with multiple needs recognise this and take steps to understand their potential service users in depth. This briefing helps unpack what is meant by ‘multiple needs’ and explores the characteristics of those affected.

Read the briefing online. To learn more about the methods and data used, view the accompanying method notes.

You can also view the first briefing here.

2 05, 2019

Why we need to invest in multiple needs – new briefing out now

By |2019-06-05T10:15:33+00:00May 2nd, 2019|Categories: News, Project Evaluation|Tags: , , , , , |

This is the first in a series of briefings on multiple needs, drawing on data collected by Fulfilling Lives partnerships on their beneficiaries. In this briefing we explore the substantial cost to the public purse created by misdirected and avoidable use of public services, as well as the human, social and economic costs.

The briefing also looks at how, after getting support from Fulfilling Lives for nearly a year, people have fewer negative interactions with public services, including fewer arrests, convictions, evictions and visits to A&E.

View the briefing online and, to learn more about the methodology used, view the method notes.

29 03, 2019

Contagion of Hope

By |2019-05-14T08:34:48+00:00March 29th, 2019|Categories: Blog|Tags: , , , , , |

Beth Collinson will be joining the Fulfilling Lives national evaluation team from April 2019 leading on our learning programme. In this, her first blog, she talks about the inspiration gained from attending a recent event held by one of the Fulfilling Lives partnerships.

Throughout my PhD, the social contagion of recovery (from substance misuse), became a predominant element of my work. In one of my first presentations, I explained that just as human emotions like happiness can be contagious, recovery is too. A colleague of mine (Professor David Best) explains in his work that the social contagion of recovery has the potential for “transmitting hope and the belief that recovery is possible even to those who are not yet ready to commit to abstinence“.

30 01, 2019

New report published: “Promising practice”, with key findings from local evaluations to date

By |2019-05-07T13:41:14+00:00January 30th, 2019|Categories: News|Tags: , , , , , , |

The national evaluation team have published key findings from local evaluations in their latest report, Promising Practice. The report:

  • Highlights approaches and interventions that appear promising based on local evaluation evidence;
  • Shares learning on successful implementation of these approaches;
  • Considers how different interventions are contributing the the programme’s systems change ambitions; and
  • Informs further evaluation activities.

[…]

28 01, 2019

Frontline workforce – it’s a question of pragmatism

By |2019-05-14T08:45:23+00:00January 28th, 2019|Categories: Blog|Tags: , , , , , , |

Having purpose, an eye for detail and a sense of curiosity are the Fulfilling Lives workforce attributes I have flagged as desirable in previous blogs. Time is often at a premium for staff. Smaller caseloads and flexibility are ways of extending the time available to beneficiaries. Which brings me round to another attribute for the practitioner which, is pragmatism.

As I said in the item on curiosity, practitioners engaged with the evaluation of theory not only contribute to better practice but ensure theory is grounded in pragmatism. Thereby theory becomes better as well. People become less inclined to say: ‘that is alright in theory, but it doesn’t work in practice’. A pragmatic practitioner doesn’t just know the theory, but they act on it because it works.

[…]

27 06, 2018

The need for change: Reflections from the newest member of the national evaluation team

By |2019-05-14T10:23:56+00:00June 27th, 2018|Categories: Blog, News|Tags: , , , , , , , |

It’s now six months since I joined the Fulfilling Lives national evaluation team. My background is in community and criminal justice research, so I have a degree of familiarity with the target group. I have evaluated initiatives to help re-engagement on release from prison, to provide pathways to education and ultimately employment, and to help with accommodation and independent living. Offenders often have chaotic lifestyles and multiple needs including experience of homelessness, alcohol and/or drug dependency, and/or mental health issues. You can often find childhood trauma, special educational needs or attachment issues as well. What struck me time and time again when listening to offenders and their workers tell me their stories was the lack of coherent support available to people who are in desperate […]

26 04, 2018

Latest Report from the Fulfilling Lives National Evaluation Published

By |2019-05-14T10:40:06+00:00April 26th, 2018|Categories: News, Project Evaluation|Tags: , , , , , , |

The latest national evaluation report on the Fulfilling Lives (Supporting People with Multiple Needs) programme, published today by CFE, shows continuing high demand for help. The 12 funded projects have successfully engaged with nearly 3,000 people affected by homelessness, substance misuse, offending and mental ill health.

Beneficiaries who remain with the programme show clear signs of progress, but this takes time and substantial resource. Project staff often need to spend extended periods of time with beneficiaries and have to be flexible to cope with chaotic lives. However some beneficiaries have needs for which they will always require support. What constitutes success varies from person to person and in many cases, success is about developing strategies, resilience and understanding to effectively manage their needs.

The report includes clear […]

19 03, 2018

How to Write a Good Survey

By |2019-05-14T09:41:52+00:00March 19th, 2018|Categories: Blog|Tags: , , , , , |

A key feature of Fulfilling Lives is that it is a learning programme; it aims to gather and share learning about what works, what doesn’t and what needs to change. A frequently used method to collect views and experiences from which to develop learning is the survey. In this blog, Kerry Dowding (Research and Evaluation Officer, Fulfilling Lives South East) shares her tricks and tips on how to get the most out of your survey design. Kerry has been creating surveys for the voluntary sector for the last eight years, and received a Masters of Research in 2016.

It’s 4.50pm, and you remember that you promised to send out a few survey questions by the end of the day. You scribble out some questions that roughly […]

1 02, 2018

Frontline Workforce – it’s a question of curiosity

By |2019-05-14T08:36:25+00:00February 1st, 2018|Categories: Blog|Tags: , , , , , |

At the centre of the Fulfilling Lives (Multiple Needs) programme is evaluation and here the workforce is on the frontline. For it is they who source, collate and complete the two key measures –  the Homelessness Outcomes Star and the NDT Assessment – with the service beneficiaries. Frontline workers say something they enjoy about the programme is the move away from a purely target driven approach. To make the most of this we need to make sure that the essential evaluation is not a chore. Not tasks that are completed as an add-on to a day’s work but ones that are integral to the way of working alongside beneficiaries and peer workers.

[…]

15 09, 2017

Frontline workforce -it’s a question of detail

By |2019-05-14T09:12:44+00:00September 15th, 2017|Categories: Blog|Tags: |

I have blogged previously about purpose and it’s time to move on to the detail – where the devil lies (alongside salvation) . The question is how do we recruit, train, support and retain an effective workforce? A workforce with the knowledge, skills and experience to change lives and systems alongside people with complex needs including homelessness, offending, substance misuse and mental ill-health. One that supports people to overcome barriers to services and engagement. A workforce that is genuine and honest about the collaborative involvement of individuals with lived experience.

It is a big ask to come up with an exhaustive list of what the workforce does and how it goes about its tasks. Anyone that has spent time drawing up job descriptions knows the […]

31 05, 2017

Exactly what is it the frontline staff do that makes a difference?

By |2019-05-14T09:18:30+00:00May 31st, 2017|Categories: Blog|Tags: , |

Helen Gavaghan, Senior Engagement Worker at Inspiring Change Manchester (ICM), gives an inkling of some of the things workers do to support people to think about change. She says some ‘traditional’ approaches need challenging and staff freed up to be open about working with both their own and their client’s lived experience. She concludes by suggesting learning about what it is that staff are doing is collected and brought together as a tool-kit for other practitioners.

In the Fulfilling Lives (Multiple Needs) projects, when considering the learning that is being fed back overall, I feel there could be more detailed examination of what the frontline project workers do that makes a difference to people’s lives. I believe that there is some valuable learning that could be collected and shared […]

23 03, 2017

Frontline Workforce – It’s a question of purpose

By |2019-05-14T09:19:30+00:00March 23rd, 2017|Categories: Blog|Tags: |

Vic Citarella delves further into the significance of ‘purpose’ for service users and the workforce in the Big Lottery Fulfilling Lives (Multiple Needs) projects.

Indications are emerging from evaluations that the ‘purpose’ of each Fulfilling Lives project is very important in generating value and ownership. For beneficiaries, engaging in meaningful activities appears to create a vital sense of purpose. Equally for the workforces involved feedback suggests that the ‘purposeful’ nature of job roles generates added value and personal motivation. In my last workforce blog, I suggested that the value stemmed from four sources:

  • Meaningful service user engagement
  • Concepts of open-endedness and persistence (turned into practice)
  • The ideas around psychologically informed environments (PIE) and the like
  • Systems Change

In focussing on workforce matters in this series of blogs I have therefore dug […]

20 03, 2017

Individuals with lived experience to present at national conference in May

By |2019-05-14T10:29:11+00:00March 20th, 2017|Categories: News|Tags: , , |

The National Expert Citizen’s Group is a group of individuals with lived experience of homelessness, substance misuse, mental ill health and offending behaviour. The group is comprised of individuals from the 12 funded project areas for the Big Lottery Fund’s ‘Fulfilling Lives: Supporting people with multiple needs’. CFE Research facilitates the group. Members from the group have been accepted to run a workshop at the 2017 Multiple Needs summit in Milton Keynes. Sarah Robinson, the group’s facilitator (and research manager on the programme’s National Evaluation), will be supporting two group members to lead and present at their first national conference.

http://www.homeless.org.uk/events/tackling-multiple-disadvantage

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