From 1 October 2020, we are asking social housing organisations to measure a new set of impact measures. As before, there are nine key measures that we’re inviting organisations to record, with some additional information for four of them.

The new set of measures have been developed in collaboration with community investment colleagues. By recording them and sharing them with us, you will help us to collate the support social housing organisations are providing to their residents during this uncertain time.

We recognise the staff time continues to be stretched and appreciate the ongoing participation of organisations in this project. We recognise that these new set of measures involve additional categories and stress that organisations are welcome to send in partial returns. Our preference is to receive incomplete returns from organisations who have recorded only the figures that are relevant to them.

Please use this revised form to complete your monthly returns.

If you have any queries about these new measures, please contact Adam Chester.

Guidance on each figure in the impact measures v2.0

1. Number of welfare calls to residents in the past month: we are defining “welfare calls” as any call made to residents about their welfare. They are more likely to be check-in calls to residents to see whether they need any additional support, rather than in-depth advice or guidance, which are covered in other measures. The measure includes calls made to those in sheltered schemes or as part of ongoing befriending services.

Please only provide the figures for the month which has just passed, rather than providing a total figure from all months so far. Each month, we will publish the number of welfare calls which happened in that month, as well as the total number of welfare calls so far.

2. Total number of residents identified on Universal Credit: please tell us the total number of residents on Universal Credit, and also indicate to us whether this is higher, lower, or the same as last month. This figure is a running total which may fluctuate up or down over the months or remain the same. It’s therefore important to capture both increases and decreases.

3. Figures around financial support: please provide the following three measures

Amount distributed through direct financial support in the past month: this figure is about direct financial support to residents, through hardship funds, rent relief funds, fuel vouchers, or other means. This can be about support distributed from the budget of your organisation, or from funds that you have raised for distribution. You are also able to record the financial value of goods and services which you have purchased and then distributed directly to residents e.g. white goods, digital tablets. This figure is not about a money claimed in benefits from government, and the numbers of residents supported in this way is recorded in another figure. This figure is also not about funds distributed to organisations, which are captured in a different measure.

Amount distributed to community and voluntary groups over the past month: this figure is about showing how much financial support is given to community and voluntary groups, and local charities. In order to be counted, organisations or groups should ideally have a charity commission number and/or a constitution. If there are other groups outside this criteria who you have an ongoing relationship and support financially who you would like to count, please do record them. This figure is not about funds distributed directly to residents, which are captured in a different measure.

Number of community and voluntary groups supported financially over the past month: this figure is about showing how connected housing associations are to community and voluntary groups, and local charities, in the areas that they work. Initially, we are capturing financial support only, although we recognise that the support provided often goes beyond this. In order to be counted, organisations or groups should ideally have a charity commission number and/or a constitution. If there are other groups outside this criteria who you have an ongoing relationship and support financially, who you would like to count, please do record them. This figure is not about funds distributed directly to residents, which are captured in a different measure.

4. Number of food interventions made in the past month: we are defining “food interventions” as a catch all terms to capture any support given to residents about food, including delivering food parcels your staff have prepared, and making referrals to food banks. Some households will receive support with food more than once in a month, so we are recording each occasion as a separate food intervention. Please only provide the figures for the month which has just passed, rather than providing a total figure from all months so far.

5. Figures about advice, guidance and support

We are capturing multiple measures about different types of advice, guidance and support, to reflect that fact that housing associations provide a wide range of valuable advice to residents, on a variety of topics. We consider “advice, guidance and support” to mostly be one-to-one or personalised guidance, or guidance targeted directly at a group of residents. It can include referrals of residents to commissioned advice services, not just those delivered directly by your staff. It doesn’t refer to posts on social media, or resident newsletters distributed to all residents. We are capturing one overall figure, which is “Overall number of people supported with advice, guidance, and support in the past month.” We are also capturing specific figures for different themes. Please see the data capture form (which you can download at the bottom of this page), for examples within each theme. The different themes we are capturing are:

  • Money and debt
  • Welfare and benefits advice
  • Digital
  • Employment, education, and training
  • Mental wellbeing (including loneliness)

For all of these advice, guidance and support measures, please only provide figures for the month which has just passed, rather than providing a total figure from all months so far. Each month, we will publish the number of people supported with advice and guidance, as well as the total numbers supported so far.

6. Total number of residents identified in arrears: please tell us the total number of residents in arrears, and also indicate to us whether this is higher, lower, or the same as last month. This figure is a running total which may fluctuate up or down over the months or remain the same. It’s therefore important to capture both increases and decreases.

7. Employment, education and training

Respondents to the impact measures have expressed interest in recording social value figures around employment, education, and training, as this is a big area of work currently. As a result, we have chosen five figures from the HACT Social Value Bank that will cover the majority of work done in this area.

Please don’t provide us with social value figures but send us the number of residents supported into different types of employment, education and training. Based on numbers you provide, The Centre will calculate the social value of people supported into employment, education and training from across the UK. For the purpose of UK-wide collection we will use the average social value figure each outcome (with deadweight applied), which does not differentiate for age and location. The full HACT Social Value Bank provides different social value figures for the age and location of the person supported. If you record these details yourself, you are encouraged to work out the precise social value figure you have produced, based on your location and the age of residents you’ve supported.

The five outcomes we are measuring are about supporting residents into:

  • Full-time employment
  • Part-time employment
  • Employment training
  • Apprenticeships
  • Volunteering

If you support people into work through the government’s upcoming KickStart programme, please record them as either “full-time employment” or “part-time employment”, depending on the placement.

8. Number of young people supported over the past month: this figure is about supporting young people in any way, including with activities, employment and training, or mental wellbeing. Please only provide the figures for the month which has just passed, rather than providing a total figure from all months so far.

9. Number of residents who “feel in control of life” in the past month

Respondents to the impact measures have expressed interest in a social value figure around mental health support, as this is a big area of work currently. As a result, we have chosen a figure from the HACT Social Value Bank to act as a proxy indicator for mental health. This measure requires a “before and after” survey. It is our aspiration that organisations return figures on this, and we are including it at this stage to see whether organisations are able to integrate this survey into their new and existing projects.

In order to claim a social value figure for supporting residents with mental health, we have chosen a social value measure which is titled “Feel in control of life”. This requires your staff to present residents with a statement which they must respond to. You must do in a “before and after” format, with the “before” question at least three months before the “after” question. The statement is: “I feel that what happens to me is outside of my control”

Residents have four possible responses:

• Often
• Sometimes
• Not often *
• Never *

To record a social value figure, residents’ answers must change between taking the “before” survey and the “after” survey. Residents must move from either “often” or “sometime” to “not often” or “never”. The earliest we would be able to see any results to this question would be in February 2021.  Please do let us know if you are planning to ask residents this question and to start returning a figure for this measure.

Based on numbers you provide, HACT/The Centre will calculate the social value of people who “feel in control of life”, a proxy for mental health. For the purpose of UK-wide collection we will use the average social value figure “feel in control of life” (with deadweight applied), which does not differentiate for age and location. The full HACT Social Value Bank provides different social value figures for the age and location of the person supported.

Please fill in the form before downloading the spreadsheet

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