CRESR has a strong record in delivering research exploring the needs and experiences of vulnerable and 'hard-to-reach' groups. Our research portfolio includes a substantial body of work focused on vulnerable sections of the population, including:
- homeless people, particularly marginalised subsections of this population, such as those with mental ill health, rough sleepers and the 'hidden homeless'
- people with multiple or complex needs
- gypsies and travellers
- street sex workers
We evaluate the impact of particular interventions on vulnerable groups. For example, we examined the efficacy of family/intensive intervention projects and recently assessed the Yorkshire Prisons ETA scheme. We inform relevant policy through the production of toolkits and guidance for clients, such as for regional planning bodies looking to estimate gypsy and traveller pitch requirements. Two key areas of work involve considering the role and effectiveness of statutory and voluntary sector agencies and assessing how well the policy and legislative framework meets the needs of vulnerable groups.
Project Director: Professor Del Roy Fletcher
Project Duration: 2014-2020
A mixed method evaluation of the West Yorkshire Pilot funded under the auspices of the Big Lottery Fund’s ‘Fulfilling Lives’ programme. The evaluation seeks to explore the implementation of the pilot and investigate its ability to provide an integrated service to those with multiple and complex needs (offending, homelessness, substance misuse and mental health problems).
Project Director: Chris Dayson
Project Duration: 2016-2018
In June 2016 CRESR was appointed to evaluate the 'More than Food' programme on behalf of the Trussell Trust.
The work of the Trussell Trust, a 400-strong network of foodbanks across the UK, has grown in size and prominence as a response to food poverty in post-austerity Britain.
The More Than Food Programme was developed to offer support to clients beyond emergency food provision with the aim of addressing the underlying causes of food poverty and crises within a single community hub.
The programme, which has received funding from a range of sources, including the Big Lottery Fund and Comic Relief, focuses on four main areas:
- Money management
- Healthy eating
- Holiday clubs for families
- Tackling fuel poverty.
The More Than Food Programme was endorsed in Feeding Britain - the report of the All-Party Parliamentary Inquiry into hunger in the UK. The report recommended a formal roll-out of a 'one stop shop' model of delivery, seeking to address the underlying causes and the symptoms of food poverty 'by providing advice, skills and advocacy services, as well as food and human friendship, under one roof'.
Principal Applicant: Professor Angela Tod / Co-applicants: Jan Gilbertson, Professor Christine Liddell, Catherine Homer
Project Duration: 2015-2018
This seminar series will generate new understanding of human behaviour regarding cold homes, fuel poverty and their impact on health by reviewing current evidence, identifying evidence gaps and priorities for future research. The series will explicitly consider the influence of social and health inequalities, and focus on policy influences, impact and interventions. It will add to existing academic knowledge by reviewing and synthesising existing evidence, and will identify gaps in knowledge.
Project Director: Dr Stephen Green
Project Duration: 2016-2017
This report presents the key findings from a rapid evaluation of the impact of the St Basils 'Positive Pathway' accommodation and support model for young people. The Positive Pathway Model aims to 'help public service commissioners and providers of services to work together in planning and delivering services for young people recognising that safe, decent and affordable housing underpins achievement of other positive outcomes – whether these relate to education, training, employment, health, or safer communities’. The evaluation was commissioned by St Basils and conducted by the Centre for Regional Economic and Social Research (CRESR) at Sheffield Hallam University. The funders of the model, the Department for Communities and Local Government (DCLG), requested a rapid evaluation to understand more about the model's impact within English local authorities. This report is the main output from this rapid evaluation, and aims to provide St Basils, DCLG, and their partners with a better understanding of the impact and traction that the Positive Pathway Model is having within local authorities and the effectiveness of St Basils' efforts to promote it. Based on these findings, the report makes recommendations with a view to supporting further development and refinement of the model.
Project Director: Dr Kesia Reeve
Project Duration: 2015-2016
The project is exploring homeless people’s access to the private rented sector via a survey of private landlords, a survey of homeless people, and a survey of local authorities as well as qualitative case study interviews with a small number of homeless people who have attempted to secure private sector housing.