Cordis Bright conducted a comprehensive implementation and process evaluation of West Yorkshire Combined Authority Violence Reduction Unit’s Sports, Creative Arts, and Mentoring Provision. The provision was developed to provide additional support for young people at risk of school exclusion and serious youth violence (SYV) in West Yorkshire. It’s goal was to reduce SYV and involvement in the criminal justice system (CJS) by addressing persistent absenteeism and exclusions from school.
The provision was commissioned and implemented rapidly, with various strengths noted, such as quick identification of schools and providers, utilisation of experienced community-based providers, and significant outreach to support numerous young people.
Stakeholders also praised the person-centred approach, flexibility, and effective partnerships developed as part of the provision. Key successes of implementation included delivering support within challenging timelines, engaging with young people effectively, and demonstrating early signs of positive outcomes.
The evaluation also identified some potential considerations for:
- Future commissioning, including reviewing the commissioning and delivery model of the provision, conducting a thorough needs assessment to identify school consistently, and allowing longer lead-in times for schools and providers.
- Supporting improvements of provisions, including collaboratively developing an evidence-based Theory of Change, establishing a consistent identification and referral process, implementing a shared set of assessment tools, and convening a partnership group to share best practice.
- Future impact evaluation, including conducting a feasibility study, determining how robust the impact evaluation should be, choosing evaluation methods, and considering the length of delivering needed to assess impact.
Check out our detailed report to learn how this initiative is making a difference and how we can help your organisation with evidence-based evaluations. The report is also available to read on the Violence Reduction Partnership website: Evaluation - West Yorkshire Combined Authority.