NEF consulting was appointed by Newlon Fusion to prepare a social valuation of services that support social housing residents and local community members into self-reliance and financial independence through employment or entrepreneurship.
Newlon Fusion is the community regeneration partner of Newlon Housing Trust. It delivers regeneration programmes in partnership with local authorities and community groups in the London boroughs of Islington, Hackney, Haringey and Tower Hamlets. Activities include training and employment support services, financial capability support, energy saving advice and environmental programmes.
The research followed the Social Return on Investment (SROI) methodology to understand the value created for both the clients and wider society.
After an initial meeting was held with Newlon Fusion staff, a focus group was conducted with clients of the support services to understand the short and longer term changes that they experienced as a result of accessing support. This informed a mapping of the journey of change, and the identification of outcomes for the study.
NEF Consulting developed an online survey which was distributed to Newlon Fusion’s clients. This complemented the data collected by Newlon Fusion through existing monitoring systems.
Model and calculations
A model was developed setting out each of the material outcomes and calculating the net impact of each, taking into account what would have happened anyway (deadweight), how much of the impact can be attributed to Newlon Fusion and whether the results displaced outcomes elsewhere. NEF Consulting applied a financial valuation to each of the outcomes, and compared the overall benefits with the cost of delivering the support.
The results show that clients felt that they had significantly increased in the “harder” skills relevant to them finding work, or moving into self-employment, for example in business planning or dealing with difficult customers. Clients also made progression in a number of the “softer” outcomes particularly reported an increase in their confidence and understanding of local support services.
For many, their sense of optimism for the future did not increase although the survey provided some indicators of client satisfaction with their current employment situation.
Download the full report here.